Protecting displays in hazardous locations

Display devices such as LCDs and plasmas are no longer just used for computer and televisual applications. The price of modern display devices ahs fallen to such a level that the use of such devices in applications such as digital signage is now widespread.

Displays such as LCD and plasma are ideal for Outdoor digital signage purposes because they are backlit so when it comes to safety signs such as fire exits they are superlative to conventional signs are found in all sorts of locations from factory floors to outdoors.

However, as electronic devices displays are vulnerable to many of the hazardous elements found in industrial and outdoor locations. Dust, dirt, wind, rain and wash down locations are all areas where normally LCDs and plasmas cannot go.

Fortunately rugged LCD enclosures are designed to combat many of these hazardous environments often designed and built to European IP standards. The IP rating signifies the amount of protection the LCD enclosure offers against dust and water. An IP54 LCD enclosure will be ideal for industrial or rugged locations while and IP66 LCD enclosure is better suited for wash down environments.

By using LCD enclosures, digital signage can now be placed outdoors, in industrial environments and even in wash room locations without fear of damage to the LCD or plasma.

Whilst many manufacturers produce LCD enclosures they can vary in quality and design. In assuring that an LCD enclosure is of good quality it is important to ensure it has adequate cooling (or heating if it is to go in cold conditions) and has a good airflow. With LCD enclosures designed for washrooms this can be challenging with some manufacturers adopting complex but effective positive pressure chambers such as plenum chambers.

Always ask a manufacturer how they combat such things to insure you are getting a good quality product.

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