Protection classes for electrical equipment
Protection class I (protection by protective earth)
In protection class I, electrical devices have an electrically conductive connection with the protective conductor contact. The electrical connection in the device must have a strain relief. If the connecting cable is torn off, the protective conductor must last be mechanically stressed and torn off. If, in the event of a fault, a live conductor touches the housing connected to the protective conductor, the circuit is interrupted and de-energized via an upstream fuse or a residual current circuit breaker.
Protection class II (protection by protective insulation)
Electrical systems and devices of protection class II have double or reinforced insulation between the mains circuit and the output circuit. All conductive surfaces are thus protected against contact with live parts in the event of a fault. The connecting cable for the operating voltage is two-core and thus designed without a protective conductor and is fitted with either a Euro plug or a contour plug.
Protection class III (protection by extra-low voltage)
Protection class III devices provide protection against electric shock by limiting the voltage to a level that is not life-threatening to humans. A basic distinction is made between:
Safety Extra Low Voltage, SELV Safety Extra Low Voltage
Functional extra-low voltage with electrically safe isolation, PELV Protective Extra Low Voltage
Functional Extra Low Voltage without electrically safe isolation, FELV Functional Extra Low Voltage
Depending on the version, the applicable standards and regulations must be observed.
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