"Explosion Proof" (Yes, It is a Thing) Motors at Digi-Key?

I had a customer asking about what sort of “explosion proof” DC motors we offer. I had to look this up, and it is apparently a type of motor made for corrosive/explosive gas operating environments.

He was mostly just wondering what we offered, if anything, in a DC motor in the roughly 3000 RPM range (he didn’t specify anything else, he said he knows that vague but he is essentially just shopping around).

As far as I could tell we don’t seem to offer any motors that would fit the “explosion proof” applications, but I’m wondering if someone knows something I don’t. This is as far as I got for standard DC motors in the 2000-4000 RPM range, but none of them seem to be the “explosion proof” type.


Any suggestions or relevant information from anyone would be much appreciated!

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No, you would be correct.

The customer is looking for a Class 1 rated motor. Typically found in mines or other locations with uncontrolled flammable gases or vapors, they are built like bricks to either contain any explosion internally or to prevent any leakage at all to start. If I recall correctly Digi-Key would only have some switches or enclosures but nothing in the motor category would even come close to being rated for Class 1. His best bet is going be either a specialized motor firm, or a company that works in the industry he is also in, mining, ag or chemical processing something like that.

Hazardous Locations: Classes, Divisions and Groups


Choose the Right Electric Motor for Hazardous Locations


Companies that may help

Bluffton Motor Works


L&S Electronic


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Nice, I appreciate all the information Nick, very useful.

I especially like that last link with the irrigation equipment running in the picture; having spent a couple years designing control electronics for them I get more excited than a person should when I see them. :slight_smile:

I concur with Nick, I would especially not recommend any brushed motors as they spark a lot :):star_struck:

I would advise the customer visit the following UL site:

UL Certifications Directory

and punch in PTDR under UL Category Code:

They should get a listing of existing products that meet specs for motors in hazardous environments

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Ah, very nice, thank you Kristof.

Hi Alec,

from an international standpoint, there might be different norms for explosion proof.
Here in Germany we have quite some different classes, depending on the environment they are used in.
On the German Wikipedia Page you can find quite some information on it.

Unfortunately the English Version is way less informativ. But I recommend to use google Translate to read it.

So first the customer would need to know which classes he would need, but also which voltage and current he is working in. But I am sure he knows that, and just wanted to see it in general.

Coming back to the question of the customer, what sort of explosion proof motors DC we offer, basically none, as we don’t sell motors with a housing. That the motor would be explosion proof, the contacts have to be in an explosion proof chamber, and not open.
That said, it’s most likely possible, that the some motors can be used to get them explosion proof, if a matching housing would be build, but then he would need to test and get a certificate to be explosion proof.

I just guess he is looking for a ready build motor.

BR, Michael