Common Compulsory Standards
European Standards (EN)
European Norm; EN standards are a protocol to follow when manufacturing a product or performing a function.
European standards are maintained by European Committee for Standardization (CEN), European Committee for Electrotechnical Standardisation (CENELEC) and European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI).
Power conversion and supply products from Ideal Power are predominantly associated with:
- EN 60950-1 – Information Technology Standard
- EN 60601-1 – Medical Standard
- EN 60065 – Audio, Video and Media Electronics Standard
- EN 60335-1 – Electrical Household Items Standard
- EN 60335-2-29 – Household & Battery Charges Standard
A CE mark is a combination of LVD / EMC / RoHS. Products carrying the CE marking represent a declaration by the manufacturer of conformity to applicable European Product Directives. The CE marking or formerly EC mark is a mandatory conformity marking for certain products sold within the European Economic Area (EEA) since 1985. Products exported internationally made within the EEA will still carry a CE marking.
You can find details of the LVD, EMC and RoHS directives below.
Low Voltage Directive (LVD) – Current Mandatory Level: 2014/35/EU
The LVD covers all health and safety risks of electrical equipment operating with a voltage input or output of between 50 and 1000 V for alternating current and between 75 and 1500 V for direct current.
In order to sell an electrical product within the EU, the LVD must be met.
Electromagnetic Compatibility (EMC) – Current Mandatory Level: 2014/30/EU
EMC refers to the unintentional electromagnetic interference (EMI) that a power converter or supply may generate as a by-product of operation, the purpose of the EMC directive is to limit EMI to a reasonable amount, so as to limit interference with radio and telecommunication equipment.
In addition, the directive also governs that powers supplies or converters should be immune to radio or telecommunication interference when applied to its intended use.
Restriction of Hazardous Substances (RoHS) – Current Mandatory Level: 2011/65/EU
The full term for RoHS is ‘Directive on the Restriction of the use of certain Hazardous Substances in Electrical and Electronic Equipment’.
The original RoHS directive was adopted in February 2003 by the European Union and has been in force since July 1, 2006 with the primary goal of restricting the use of hazardous materials in the manufacture of electronic and electrical equipment. RoHS was superseded in July 21, 2011 which contained further regulations and guidance.
RoHS received a further update on January 2, 2013 which further defined the directive.
Finally, in 2015 a further update was introduced detailing four more restrictive substances; the full list of restricted substances are:
- Mercury (Hg): < 100 ppm
- Cadmium (Cd): < 100 ppm
- Hexavalent Chromium: (Cr VI) < 1000 ppm
- Polybrominated Biphenyls (PBB): < 1000 ppm
- Polybrominated Diphenyl Ethers (PBDE): < 1000 ppm
- Bis(2-Ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP): < 1000 ppm
- Benzyl butyl phthalate (BBP): < 1000 ppm
- Dibutyl phthalate (DBP): < 1000 ppm
- Diisobutyl phthalate (DIBP): < 1000 ppm
- Lead (Pb): < 1000 ppm
Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals (REACH)
REACH is legislation from the European Union to regulate the production and use of chemicals and their negative impact and came into force on June 1, 2007. In contrast to RoHS, REACH regulates and bans substances that are proven to be hazardous. REACH puts liability on the industry to assess and manage the risks involved with chemicals.
Energy Related Products (ErP II) – Current Mandatory Level: 2009/125/EC: EC 278/2009: Power Supplies
In November 2009, the Eco-Design Directive EuP was replaced with the new energy-related products directive (ErP) 2009/125/EC. The ErP directive is also known as the Ecodesign of Energy Related Products Directive and compliance.
ErP II is considered a green and environmentally-friendly directive with the aim of constantly improving the energy efficiency of energy-using products (EuP) and energy related products (ErP), specifically when in a standby or sleep state, but it also applies to the general design and operation of the device. Not only does this save energy in general which is positive for the environment, but it also offers potential utility bill savings for end-users.
A clarification of the difference between EuP and ErP can be found below:
- Energy-using Products (EuPs), which use, generate, transfer or measure energy (e.g. electricity, gas, fossil fuel), including consumer goods such as boilers, water heaters, computers, televisions, and industrial products such as transformers, industrial fans and industrial furnaces.
- Energy related Products (ErPs) which do not necessarily use energy but have an impact on energy and can, therefore, contribute to saving energy, such as windows, insulation material or bathroom devices (e.g. shower heads, taps).
This also applies to power converters and supplies that are connected to a mains AC socket which is switched on (live) but no device is connected to the output. A mobile-phone charger would be an example of this type of power supply or an internal power supply unit (PSU) where the device is in a low-power mode such as sleep or standby.
Manufacturers must show an active interest in redesigning their products to lower the impacts associated with production. And, must also appropriately label products so that consumers can review product impacts.
The CB scheme is an international agreement among participating countries and certification organizations, which aims to facilitate trade by promoting harmonising national standards with a body of international standards.
This results in prescribed IEC standards which are equivalent core standards found in different parts of the world. A good example of this is IEC 60950-1, which sets to harmonise with global standards UL 60950-1, EN 60950-1 or BS 60950-1 to name a few.
Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Recycling WEEE – Current Mandatory Level: WEEE Regulations 2006
The EC introduced the WEEE Directive in 2005 to address the environmental impacts of unwanted electrical and electronic equipment at end-of-life disposal and it became law on January 2, 2007.
The directive aims to put the financial liability on the producers to manage the recycling of the unwanted equipment. A producer can be defined as a manufacturer, importer, supplier or seller of electrical or electronic products.