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Non-sparking materials

Non-sparking materials

Would somebody be able to tell me if ductile iron and stainless steels are considered to be "non-sparking" materials?  Our data sheet calls for non-sparking materials but the listed materials are A 536 (ductile iron) and 17-4 PH stainless steel.

I appreciate any help you can provide!

RE: Non-sparking materials

I don't think so.  Nonsparking materials are those such as Copper, Aluminum, Bronze.  BTW they can make sparks, but usually of such low temperature the sparks will not ignite anything.


"I think it would be a good idea."
- Mahatma Gandhi (1869-1948),
when asked about Western civilization  

RE: Non-sparking materials

Be careful, aluminium is considered as a "sparking material" in underground coal mining environment and excluded from use in all Australian u/ground mines.

RE: Non-sparking materials

The definition depends on the context.  For the purpose of a coupling guard, this would normally be satisfied by aluminum or plastic.  For a disaster bushing in a seal, it would typically refer to brass, bronze or carbon.  For bearing housing seals, it might be brass or plastic of some sort.  When my father worked in an ammunition plant in the 1970's, only Beryllium tools were considered to be non-sparking.   What is the context?

Johnny Pellin

RE: Non-sparking materials

Thank you everyone for your responses.
This is for a liquid ring vacuum pump for a petroleum plant.  Oddly, the process fluid is recycle water (I thought non-sparking would only be required for petroleum products).

RE: Non-sparking materials

It may use recycle water for a seal fluid, but it is drawing vapors off of some process. If the vapors contain hydrocarbon and oxygen, then there is a potential for an internal explosion if a spark is generated.  In this context I would not consider 17-4 PH stainless steel or ductile iron to be non-sparking.  If there is hydrocarbon vapor and oxygen present with the potential for a combustible mixture, I would suggest that you consider another material combination if one is available.  

Johnny Pellin

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