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The recent introduction of the CPR regulation in Italy lead to confusion about the use of special cables for industrial automation. Therefore, we would like to give to our customers some clarifications about the application in the different industries.

La recente introduzione del regolamento CPR in Italia ha portato incertezze e confusione, in termini applicativi, nell’utilizzo dei cavi speciali per l’automazione industriale: desideriamo pertanto fornire ai nostri clienti alcuni spunti chiarificatori rispetto al mercato di appartenenza.

The information included below regarding the correct use of electric cables is partly taken from EU Regulation 305/2011 and partly from AICE (Associazione Italiana Industrie Cavi e Conduttori Elettrici) [Italian association of electric cable and conductor industries].

Details on the new CPR for the use of electric cables

The new CPR applies to the fields below:

  • Art. 1 – it establishes the conditions for placing construction products on the market or making them available
  • Art. 2 – par. 1) – “construction product”: any product or “kit” which is produced and placed on the market for permanent incorporation in construction works or parts thereof.
  • Art.2 – par. 3) “construction works” means buildings and civil engineering works (e.g. houses, industrial and commercial buildings, offices, hospitals, schools, underground train facilities, airports, etc.)

Electric cables are without doubt subject to the CPR, but it applies only to cables that are permanently incorporated in the construction works and are used in the building itself (be they for the transport of energy or of data, at any voltage and with metal conductors or optic fibres).

This means that the cables for electrical machine equipment and cables used in industrial facilities are not subject to CPR but must still comply with the Machinery Directive EN 60204-1.

The new CPR defines a number of classes of reaction to fire, which will be applied depending on the location the cables are installed in.

Here is a LINK to download the current situation governed by the Italian law CEI UNEL 35016.

From the description in the enclosed table it is clear that the application of products with CPR classification regards electric cables but has no technical or legal value in the field of industrial automation.

In particular, the following characteristics can be seen for the Eca class:

  • This class is suitable only for residential buildings in which there is no risk of fire and hazards for people or objects
  • It has no additional requirements (such as tests for smoke, dripping or acidity)
  • It considers cables that can be installed individually.

In light of the above, we believe this classification is of no interest in the application of special electric cables for industrial automation.

For additional explanations, you can contact us directly.

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