Are There Borescopes for Hazardous Environments?

by | Nov 25, 2020 | News

When you’re inspecting a hazardous environment, such as a Class I Division II or a Zone 0 hazardous area, you need a hazardous environment borescope made especially for such environments.

Inspections of natural gas lines, fuel tanks, and any other inspections where the pipes could contain explosive material are extremely sensitive and need borescopes that are designed not to trigger a reaction or cause damage.

What Is a Class I Division II Location?

Locations where you will need an explosion proof borescope are considered as Class 1 and are places where flammable vapors and gases are present.

A Division II location is classified as such where these ignitable hazards are present in concentration and are handled, processed, or used. They’re kept in closed containers and systems, but there is a chance of these explosives leaking through a rupture or some sort of damage of the container or system that they are present in.

That’s why you need equipment that is intrinsically safe, which means it is designed with an explosion protection technique. Its electrical circuit is what sets it apart from regular equipment. The wiring cannot release enough energy—electrical or thermal, whether in normal or unusual circumstances—to cause an ignition and lead to a potential explosion.

A popular system for Law Enforcement is the Freedom View FVVS680 certified Class I Div II borescope.

What Is a Zone 0 Hazardous Location?

Similar to a Class I Division II hazardous area, a Zone 0 hazardous area means that it contains concentrations of combustible gases or materials that have been present in the location for a long and consistent period of time. When working in such areas, intrinsically safe borescopes are essential to avoid any unforeseeable interactions between equipment and volatile materials which could result in an explosion or accident.

What Kinds of Borescopes Can You Use for Hazardous Environments?

There are several different kinds of borescopes that you can use for hazardous environments, depending on the kind of inspection you are attempting to do. A hazardous environment borescope, also known as a hazardous portable inspection camera, can be a vital tool when conducting inspections where there is a safety hazard, such as chances of an explosion from using regular equipment and tools.

Here are the kinds of borescopes that professional prefer using in dangerous environments.

Heat Resistant Borescope

A regular borescope is not suitable for a high temperature environment. The sensors, electrical parts, and the lens used in these borescopes cannot withstand a temperature higher than 176 degrees Fahrenheit. A heat resistant borescope can function in environments where the temperature is as high as 572 degrees Fahrenheit.

Heat resistant borescopes often come with heat sensors that notify you when you are in a temperature that could damage the lens or machinery of the borescope. Both extremely cold and extremely hot temperatures are dangerous for regular borescopes, so having one that is designed to be resistant to heat is essential.

Water, Oil, and Dust Resistant Borescope

Borescope cameras that are designed to withstand high temperatures and heat allow you to explore a whole new area of hazardous environments which were previously off-limits or risky to inspect. These cameras are flexible, have rechargeable batteries, and can come with probes that are resistant to water and oil submerges, which means they are high pressure borescopes that aren’t affected by the pressure of the liquid.

However, when submerging these borescopes into liquids, make sure you read the user’s manual first and do not exceed the amount of time the camera can safely stay below the surface.

Intrinsically Safe Borescope

An intrinsically safe borescope is made so that its energy, both electrical and thermal remains at a level that doesn’t risk any kind of ignition of the combustible gases and materials present in that environment. These borescopes are great for confined spaces because of the differing sizes of their probes and their portability, making it easier to see inside pipes and engines without a risk of ignition and without having to dismantle the machinery first.   At present the only Class 0 Certified Intrinsically Safe Inspection camera is the P374 Camera.

Explosion Proof Borescope

An explosion proof videoscope is a key tool for inspecting environments for military, police, and forensic purposes, as well as for gas compression, oil and gas industries, aviation industries, etc. The advantage of using an explosion proof borescope is that it removes any sparks and puts them out before they can become a hazard or cause a reaction.

You can inspect locations which were previously avoided in a shorter amount of time and with more accuracy, enhancing the performance of your machinery and catching any problems.

Final Words

To have an easier time with your remote visual inspection in any environment, even locations that contain combustible gases and volatile materials, you should invest in a hazardous environment borescope.

These borescopes come with different probes that allow for extra navigation, distance covered, and higher quality images. What’s more, they come with portable batteries and are highly flexible, which makes them a convenient option to inspect even the tiniest of components and pipes and detect minor damages or changes effectively and clearly.

With a videoscope designed to be resistant to dangerous environments, high pressure, temperature, and explosions, you don’t have to take your machinery apart in order to do the inspections. You can simple select a probe that is appropriate for the location and get an image that is sent digitally for clearer viewing.

These borescopes are also lightweight, compact, and easy to maneuver, which means that with careful practice and precaution, you can learn to use them efficiently and without a risk of accident or explosion, as long as you are already skilled at using regular borescopes. They also have carry straps to hang around your neck for convenience, especially when working in tight spaces.

You should always rent or purchase your borescopes from reliable and certified retailers, such as USA Borescopes. We have an assortment of hazardous environment videoscopes that are specially designed for inspecting Class I Division II environments in a safe and secure way.