A new survey from Schaffner reveals continuing uncertainty around the industry’s readiness for the changing EMC regulations regarding the extension of compliance testing of devices down to 9 kHz. With responses from companies across multiple sectors, the survey reveals that many of those who will be most affected by the change are uncertain about their ability to comply, with many needing longer to take the actions needed.
John Harrison, Managing Director Industrial UK said, “Nearly three-quarters of the respondents to our survey who believe they will be impacted, said that they estimate it could take up to two years to ensure their new and existing products comply, so they want to be able to take action now.”
Nearly 90 percent of respondents acknowledged their belief that the phased-in extension down to 9 kHz will have at least some direct impact on their business. There is less certainty, however, about exactly how the legislation will affect current design projects, and what can be done now to accommodate the new design requirements the legislation required.
The uncertainty is largely due to a lack of comprehensive information, and differing levels of understanding of what is currently known about the changes. The survey encompasses professionals from machinery and robotics; automotive; energy management; lighting and many other industries across the spectrum.
The lowering of the required testing and compliance range is being implemented because an increasing number of devices are causing potentially disruptive electromagnetic interference at the low end of the frequency spectrum. The regulatory move is expected to help ensure that all electronic devices can operate freely, harmoniously and with little to no interference, which has become increasingly difficult in recent years with the exponential increase in the number of potential interference signals generated by devices such as LED lighting, switching power supplies, and small motors that have not previously been regulated.
To achieve compliance, the majority of survey respondents feel that they might need active filtering. However, 86 percent of them currently only use passive filtering techniques that they believe will be largely inadequate, and only half have access to facilities capable of testing to 9 kHz.
To address the need, Schaffner has drawn from its extensive repository of electrical engineering knowledge and compliance data to develop and offer “Active Filter Technology”, designed to take the guesswork out of compliance and accelerate the ability to achieve it.
“We are very conscious of the need for these new regulations to help ensure a seamless experience for electronic device users, which is practically everyone,” added John Harrison, Managing Director Industrial UK. “That need has become particularly acute in recent years, so we applied our expertise to deliver a solution that will help our customers make the transition to those new frequency testing requirements. We are delighted with what Active Filter Technology can do and encourage everyone to come and discuss what it can do during SPS 2023.”
Among other new products Schaffner will feature at SPS 2023 will be the new FN304X filters, designed for use with grids that have exceptionally challenging operational and situational requirements as well as other applications that are highly focused on safety and reliability.
“The remainder of 2023 and the whole of 2024 is set to mark a watershed in ECI regulation,” added John Harrison, Managing Director Industrial UK, “And, once again, Schaffner is proud to lead from the front, as we will demonstrate at SPS 2023.”