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Regulations & Classifications

UNI EN ISO 16890

The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) has created a new global standard, ISO16890, which defines the classification and testing procedures for air filters used in general ventilation systems.
The new international ISO 16890 standard came into force on 1 January 2017, but only replaced the previous standard in May 2018.
The most important change concerns the filter classification criteria, which are classified according to capacity to filter fine dust, generally referred to as PM10, PM2,5e PM1.
PM stands for "Particulate Matter". The abbreviation refers to the suspended particles present in the air that we breathe every day, usually called fine dust or particulates. The number following the initials PM, for example, 10, indicates the diameter size of the particle, which can vary from 10 to 1 micron.

  • PM10 – particulate made up of particles with a diameter of less than 10 µm and up to 0.3 µm.
  • PM2,5 – particulate made up of particles with a diameter of less than 2.5 µm and up to 0.3 µm
  • PM1  – particolato formato da particelle con diametro inferiori a 1 µm e fino a 0,3 µm

. – particulate made up of particles with a diameter of less than 1 µm and up to 0.3 µm.

International regulation

The new parameters have international significance, dictating standards applicable all over the world. ISO 16890 replaces the European standard EN 779 and ASHRAE 52.2 (the US market standard).

International regulation

New tests

ISO 16890 tests filters with particles from 0.3 µm to 10 µm. The previous EN 779 only tested particles with a diameter of 0.4 µm. This means that filters are now tested under conditions much more similar to real-world conditions.

New tests

New categories of efficiency

Four new filter groups have been introduced: Coarse, ePM10, ePM2.5, and ePM1. The prefix “e” stands for efficiency. To be included a certain category, filters must be capable of capturing at least 50% of particulate matter corresponding to the dimensions indicated. Filters that capture less than 50% of PM10 dust are included in the Coarse group.

New categories of efficiency

Class table

GroupClassReference valueΔP Final (Pa)
ePM1 minePM2,5 minePM10
0,3 ≤ x ≤ 10,3 ≤ x ≤ 2,50,3 ≤ x ≤ 10
ISO Coarse< 50%Initial gravimetric arrestance200
ISO ePM10≥ 50%ePM10300
ISO ePM2,5≥ 50%ePM2,5300
ISO ePM1≥ 50%ePM1300

Graded products

Soft pocket bag filters
ePM1 60%
ePM2,5 60%
ePM10 60%
Coarse 60%
Coarse 65%
ePM10 50%
F7
F8
F9
G4
M5
M6
Coarse 65%
ePM1 60%
ePM2,5 60%
ePM10 60%
G4
M5
M6
F7
F8
F9
Corrugated synthetic filters
Coarse 40%
Coarse 50%
Coarse 60%
ePM10 50%
Coarse 30%
Coarse 65%
ePM1 60%
G2
G3
G4
M5
F7