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overview of types of plugs and sockets
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Over decades the number of types of plugs and sockets that can be found in Brazil has steadily raised. The most commonly used plugs are North American flat blade (with or without earth), European round pin (Europlugs and similar) and plugs with angled pins (identical to NEMA 10-20).
An overview of Brazilian plugs and sockets is shown below.

Brazil is one of the few countries that uses both 110 and 220 Volt, 60 Hz. In some cities you may find a mix of 110 and 220 Volt.

INMETRO, the Brazilian organization for standardization is now actively promoting the introduction of one standard type. They have chosen for the new NBR 14136 standard, which is based on the IEC 60906-1 standard household plug. Brazil aims to phase out the other types.
NBR 13146  10A socket
NBR 14136 10A socket


Brazilian US type flat blade socket Brazilian US type flat blade and EU round pin socket
NBR 14136 10A socket
Multi-socket fo US, IEC, EU and IT type plugs
Brazilian US type flat blade plug Brazilian EU round pin plug
NBR 14136 10A plug
Brazilian 15A unearthed flat blade plug

1, 5
Earthed flat blade socket and plug similar to NEMA 5-15. The symbols that indicate the rating are uncommon; presumably they mean 15A-110V / 10A-220V. See  also note below.
The shown socket orientation differs from standard U.S. orientation, but seems to be usual in Brazil, given plug no. 5.
2 Dual standard socket for flat blade plugs and unearthed round pin plugs, similar to Europlugs.
3, 7
NBR 14136 standard 10A socket and plug, based on the IEC 60906-1 design. For details, see IEC 60906-1 page.
Another variant of a NBR 14136 plug is shown in images 15-17.
4 Multiple standard socket the accepts unearthed U.S.-type flat blade plugs, 2-pin Europlugs and similar unearthed round pin plugs, 10A Italian plugs (CEI 23-50 standard)* and NBR 14136 plugs. Note the following details:
(i) The slots for line and neutral pins of 'Euro', Italian and NBR 14136 plugs have a diameter of 4.2 mm.
(ii) The dual slot for earth pins has a diameter of 4.2 and 5.2 mm. However, 5.2 mm is larger than necessary for a 10A NBR 14136 earth pin, but too small for the earth pin of a U.S. plug.
(iii) The socket is not suitable for a 20A NBR 14136 plug, or a 16A Italian plug (they have respectively 4.8 and 5.0 mm pins).
(iv) There are additional, 5.2 mm line and neutral slots, spaced 26.5 mm (indicated by ?), probably meant for an Italian type 16A plug. However, only a, now obsolete, non-earthed 16A plug can be used because the central earth slot has a diameter of 4.2 rather than 5.2 mm.
(v) Internal wiring for round pin L and N slots is separated from flat blade L and N slots, which means that the reversed polarity can be respected, and - in theory - the sockets can be wired to 220V (round pin) as well as 110V (flat blade).
* CEI 23-50 plugs are not commonly used in Brazil, but they are one of the standards in neighboring Uruguay.
6 2-pole, round pin plug rated at 10A-250V. The model shown only fits in non-recessed sockets. Also Europlug type, unearthed plug are available in Brazil. They would fit in recessed NBR 14136 sockets (see no. 3).
8 2-pole U.S. type flat blade plug rated at 15A-250V (see note below). The plug is not polarized because L and N blades have the same width. Socket nos. 1 and 2 have a wider neutral slot which suggests that also polarized flat blade plugs are available in Brazil.
note There is no strict distinction between types of socket for 110V and 220V. Flat blade sockets may also been connected to a 220V network. NBR 14136 sockets are used for 220V as well as 110V. Sometimes they have a label indicating the voltage of the network. Examples are shown on the IEC 60906-1 page.

Brand names of shown devices: Alumbra, Brazil, except multi-standard socket no.4: Cambre, Argentina.


Brazilian angled 20A socket Brazilian angled 20A plug Comparison of BR and AU socket layouts Comparison of NBR 14136 10A and 20A sockets

Alumbra 20A split-phase socket Scheme of split phase wiring
Spezialelectric, Germany

We are supplying electric material and accessories as per German and all foreign standards.

D-71634 Ludwigsburg

9, 10
Brazilian socket and plug rated at 20A - 250V, with an outline of poles identical to US NEMA 10-20 plugs and sockets.
The inset of image no. 10 shows an atypical shape of the earth pin, possibly the result of the production process.
In Brazil this type of plug is known as 'tipo tristinha' (sad face type). Because of the permitted use of relative high currents it is frequently used for air conditioners. For connecting new equipment a 20A version of NBR 14136 is recommended (see no. 12).
11 Comparison of slots of a Brazilian 20A socket (green) and Australasian standard socket (blue). With earth slots of both types projected exactly on top of each other it is clearly shown that Australasian plugs will not fit in a Brazilian 20A socket, vice versa.
Designations as 'typo australiano' or 'typo argentino' are incorrect. Note the reversed polarity between BRazil and AUstralia.
12 NBR 14136 10A outlet (top; comparable to no, 3) and 20A outlet (bottom). 10A plugs have a pin diameter of 4.0 mm, whereas 20A plugs have 4.8 mm pins. A NBR 14136 20A plug is shown on the IEC 60906-1 page.
13, 14
The Alumbra company offers the same socket as no. 9 also for split-phase wiring (see drawing no. 14). Depending on the wiring of the plug, nominal 110 Volt (poles W and Y, or W and X are connected), or 220 Volt (using X and Y poles) is available. The voltage in Brazil may differ between province and/or city, but even buildings can have both voltages, which points to split-phase wiring. Note that there is no equipment ground available when using these '3-pole' plugs and sockets.

Each of the plug and sockets shown above have been donated to the museum by Spezialelectric, Germany.


PIAL-Legrand NBR 14136 plug PIAL-Legrand NBR 14136 plug

Brazilian NBR 14136 adapter

15 PIAL Legrand plugue versátil. The plugs can be assembled in two ways: (a) with pins in line with the plug housing, or (b) at a 90º corner. Details are explained in image no. 16. The example shown is rated at 10A - 250V. A 16A version exists too.   {LG}
16 A 'versatile' plug consist of two parts. The pin holding part has to be opened out to connect the wires. After that the plug can be assembled in two ways, indicated by green arrows, which results in two different types of plugs (see image no. 17).   {LG}
Adapter plug with NBR 14136 4.0 mm pins and outlet for 2-pin Europlug-like plugs and NEMA 1-15 and 5-15 flat blade plugs. The mechanism to open the safety shutters hinder connecting a earthed flat blade plug. Manufacturer: Alumbra.   {FSE}


Click the flags at right for an overview of plugs and sockets in Argentina and Uruguay.
Argentinian electrotechnical companies Cambre and Richi also serves the Brazilian market.

Argentina, flag  Uruguay, flag


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