ATEX and IECEx-certified products are crucial in any area that could contain or have activities that create explosive or potentially explosive atmospheres. There are many places that can be considered to be in an explosive atmosphere. Some more obvious, like an oil rig. But there are also other locations that might be classified as such, such as flour mills.

We all have heard of ATEX certification and IECEx certification. But, the question that many people are asking is: What makes them different? We share our knowledge and highlight the differences between each certification.


The French word ATEX is the source of the name ATEX. Atmosphere EX The term possible refers to the equipment and use that a product is required to be found in an explosive environment. The ATEX certification, which is required in Europe, covers all aspects of the manufacturing process through to the installation and usage. These two parts can be described as:

Directive 99/92/EC- The ATEX Use Directive focuses primarily upon the safety and health of workers working in potentially explosive environments. It covers the proper selection, installation, inspection, and maintenance of Ex equipment.

Directive 2014/34/EU- ‘The ATEX Equipment Directive‘, which is primarily concerned about trade, includes equipment that could be used in potentially dangerous areas. It also covers the sale and manufacture of Ex equipment.


IECEx stands for International Electrotechnical Commission Explosive. ATEX is a European mandatory application. IECEx, however, is an international certification that is accepted in many countries. It helps to build trust in the safety and security of Ex equipment. It facilitates international trade in equipment and services that are used in explosive atmospheres.

IECEx certification can offer many benefits, including:

  • – Lower testing and certification fees
  • – Shorter time to market

International confidence in product assessment

IEC Ex certification is similar to ATEX certification. It provides assurance that all aspects of equipment and installation, as well as the manufacturing, operation, and maintenance, are compliant with IEC international standards.

While there are slight differences between the certifications, ATEX is very similar to IEC Ex. The only difference is where the certification is recognized and accepted. While ATEX is a European requirement, IEC Ex can be accepted in many countries around the world.