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Hazardous Locations Safety Science Research

Providing innovative and independent research to advance hazardous locations (HazLoc) safety science.

Researchers looking at data on a tablet


Hazardous locations safety science research is a growing challenge around the world. You can leverage our expertise and extensive research services for your specialized area of focus and benefit from our dedication to science to help establish manufacturing best practices and standards.

Research has served as the foundation for our hazardous locations services since the early days of UL.

Our first hazardous locations bulletin of research was published in 1937 on the topic of floating dust in grain elevators. Over the subsequent decades, hazardous locations research has spanned a variety of explosion protection issues. One key research effort involved the determination of explosive properties of dust based on testing, utilizing a custom-designed vessel.

Another key research effort involved the determination of explosive properties of chemicals based on testing, utilizing a custom-designed vessel known as the Westerberg Explosion Test Vessel (WETV). This research into explosive properties served as the basis for the current grouping of materials in National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 70 and NFPA 497.

Recent research efforts are focusing on issues such as measuring temperatures on LED array surfaces, ignition properties of alternative refrigerants, spark ignition test results involving elevated temperatures, and current flow through combustible dusts.


Sharing information, education and best practices is the backbone of our industry. That’s why we’re active members of industry associations and codes and standards committees, such as the American Petroleum Institute (API), International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC), Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and NFPA. When you work with us, you’re uniquely positioned to learn from other leading stakeholders, from manufacturers to inspection and regulatory authorities, instrumental in moving the industry forward. As industry needs change and technology evolves, we are involved in studying and sharing the potential impacts on markets, customers, standards and, above all, safety.

At our state-of-the-art research facilities—including the only laboratory in the world for explosive dust testing involving grain and magnesium dust—we are committed to helping keep safety ahead of innovation.

New research opportunities are always under consideration. Contact us if we can help your company or your industry.

Why UL

We drive global research and standards to continually advance and meet ever-evolving product safety, performance and interoperability needs. You can benefit from our global network of technical experts and state-of-the-art facilities, along with our long-standing relationships with regulatory authorities, partner laboratories and industry technical leaders. This helps you gain the compliance credentials you need to compete in a more complex global supply chain. Leverage our global brand acceptance and trust to add value to your innovations.

Single-source provider

Our global family of certification staff can help save you time and money with a single, local point of contact for your certification needs.

Knowledge and speed

We have technical expertise versed in all protection methods with comprehensive industry knowledge that translates into actionable business efficiencies for our customers to speed time to market. Engineers perform Quality Audits bringing a higher level of technical competency to the audits. With a U.S. based certification officer (CO) on staff, certification time is reduced.

Global Market Access

Leverage our active participation and leadership in the global standards writing process. You can benefit with faster time to a global marketplace with the UL certification process, not only do we understand the requirements—we helped develop them. In fact, we participate in more than 50 Standards writing committees, such as: TC31 (IECEx), Standards Technical Panels (STPs) (North America), NFPA, American Petroleum Institute (API), and Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) and Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) committees. UL can help streamline the certification of custom-built HazLoc equipment including control panels, for global market access by including UL, C-UL, ATEX and IECEx certifications.  

Webinars on Demand

Global HazLoc & Explosive Atmosphere Markings

Standard Changes for Zone 2 Equipment 

Non-Electrical Equipment for Use in Hazardous Location – An Introduction 

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