There exists a dangerous misconception regarding the “Arc Rating” of infrared (IR) windows or viewing panes. Many reliability and maintenance professionals are under the impression that an IR window will protect them in the event of an arc blast; still others are under the impression that installing IR windows will turn non-arc-rated switchgear or electrical equipment into “arc-rated” cabinets. Neither is the case, and both misconceptions need to be corrected because they present very real safety concerns.
All major brands of IR windows are available as standard options on various brands of switchgear, MCC buckets, and other electrical equipment. They have also undergone extensive evaluation and testing as parts of arc-rated systems. Yet no IR manufacturer should ever lead the public to believe that any of these tests or system certifications have any broad-based or generic rating across all varieties of switchgear or electrical equipment. The simple fact is that there is no such “component rating” for generic “arc-resistance.” Any claims to the contrary are dangerous and negligent.
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Infrared Windows and Arc Ratings: Dispelling the Myth of Arc Resistant IR Windows