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a world leader in control for hazardous environments

LIGHTPATH is an obstruction and escape route illumination system, utilising flexible side-emitting optical fibre to project a continuous line of light that carries no electrical power.


JCE Group (UK) Ltd, a world leader in the design and manufacture of Ex and Safe Area Control Systems, have collaborated with PhotoSynergy Limited (PSL), a research and development company based at St Andrews University School of Physics and Astronomy, to develop an ATEX approved version of the fibre lighting system.


Following a request by a number of companies for a product which could be used to light escape routes, and operations in confined space working, we identified the need to create a design suitable for potentially explosive and challenging environments both on the surface and in the water.


As a result, we developed the LIGHTPATH Ex unit which took a number of years to design and build, and incorporates LIGHTPATH into a flameproof enclosure.


LIGHTPATH Ex has a range of applications in a number of sectors where there may be a risk of fire and/or explosion, including nuclear power stations, petrochemical plants, offshore installations and distillery/bonded warehouse operations. The hazardous area LIGHTPATH system is designed to improve the safety of workers operating in these industries by illuminating guide paths in both installed applications and rapid deployed systems with or without battery back-up. 

The key advantage of this innovative product is the fact that no voltage exists within the fibre making it totally safe for the user/operator. It combines second-generation, high-performance light emitting diodes (LED) with a life expectancy of 50,000 hours/five years continuous operation. 

This innovation can significantly improve safety on offshore platforms as it can light inaccessible areas such as spider decks, tanks, columns, walkways and production legs, supplying a continuous line of light to clearly delineate escape routes. Within marine and offshore windfarms, it can potentially be used in areas such as deck guard rails, open hatches, ship transfer systems and wind towers.

JCE Group (UK) Ltd and PSL are committed to developing and producing innovative, cost effective technology in line with industry requirements to improve safety across the sector. Our product, LIGHTPATH Ex, really is one of a kind with the potential to make a significant global impact. 


Frank Maes, Technical Director at JCE Group, said: “We were very pleased to have the opportunity to collaborate with the team at PSL to develop the innovative explosion-proof fibre light unit.  It’s fair to say that together we have achieved a technologically advanced design.”


PSL Director Don Walker said working with JCE Group (UK) Ltd had been an excellent learning and development opportunity. The new product had been successfully trialled and is now commercially viable.