Testing and measuring automatic door and gate safety

October 2005 Access Control & Identity Management

According to the latest European standards governing doors and gates, all automatic closing systems are governed by the Machinery Directives.

The aim of the new standards is to define the technical, constructive and operative characteristics and the testing methods for the devices which make up the automatic system and that act as a safeguard against risks that could occur during the operating life of the system.

The EN12453 standard (and the corresponding EN12445 relative to testing and measuring) determines how dangerous situations can be avoided or reduced according to the following methods:

* Respecting the safety measurements.

* The minimum protection level and force limitation.

* Detecting presence and using safety devices.

* Resistance to breakage and failure.

The use of safety devices (safety edges, photocells etc) has never been considered important in South Africa, and unfortunately we are falling way behind the rest of the world with regards to safety issues.

The only way to ensure compliance is if the safety of the automatic closing system is guaranteed by a torque system.

The EN 12445 describes the limiting of close force as follows:

1. The maximum force which may act on an obstacle must not exceed 400 N, for a period of time not exceeding 0,75 seconds.

2. After the 0,75 seconds period, the force has to be dropped to 150 N.

3. After the total time of 5 seconds, the static force has to decline from 150 N to lower than 25 N.

You need to ask yourself: Does my automation system meet these safety requirements?

For more information contact Nigel Graham, Dortech, 031 700 8260, nigel@dortech.co.za


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