Compliance & Precision News Round-Up - Issue 42
27th April 2015
This issue covers:
- Non-compliant cable causing concern
- Seaward has the measure of testing at fuse manufacturer
- BEAMA response to ECO Design study
- Counterfeiting of electrical products in Africa
- Revised edition of luminaires standard
- See us at MENE in July
The Approved Cables Initiative (ACI) is looking at the prevalence (or otherwise) of faulty electrical products in the UK construction sector.
The ACI, the UK industry-wide working group that addresses the issue of unsafe, non-approved and counterfeit cable entering the UK marketplace, has spoken out following news from Australia that Non-Conforming Products (NCP) are a significant problem in the country’s building and construction sector.
This follows news of more trouble in the Australian electrical supply chain, with another electrical cable product recall causing financial troubles in the supply chain. It also follows the ACI’s recent warning to UK distributors and importers about their need for awareness of their responsibilities under the revised Low Voltage Directive (2014/35/EU).
The recently recast Directive highlights clear responsibilities, and the ACI wants to make sure that those in the cable supply chain are fully aware of what they need to be doing to ensure compliance.
In Australia, further problems linked to counterfeit and non-compliant cable means that around 40,000 homes and businesses in the country still have potentially dangerous cable installed six months on from the recall.
Commenting, the ACI said: “We are keen to understand whether the problems experienced in Australia of non-conforming products are also being played out in the UK construction sector.
“Many of the reasons cited for the rise in NCPs have relevance for the UK too and we would ask all interested parties to let us know of any similar experiences they may have had.”
For further information about the ACI campaign visit www.aci.org.uk
One of the UK’s leading manufacturers of industrial and domestic fuse-links has specified advanced microhmmeters to improve resistance testing at its UK manufacturing plant.
Lawson Fuses Limited is using a pair of DO5000s from Seaward to achieve highly accurate low resistance measurement during the manufacture of low voltage and semi-conductor protection fuse-links at its Ponteland factory in Northumberland.
The use of the DO5000s as part of the manufacturing process enables highly accurate quality checking to be completed quickly, ensuring that tens of thousands of fuse-links produced and tested weekly comply with the relevant standards, BS 88-2:2010, IEC 60269-2:2010, BS HD 60269-2:2010, ASTA 20 authorisation and correctly function after leaving the factory gate.
A dedicated unit is also available for laboratory testing purposes.
Designed to handle all testing applications with a single highly flexible meter, the DO5000 measures from 0.1µΩ to 30,000Ω in eight ranges with manual or automatic selection and ±0.03% accuracy.
Products manufactured by Lawson are used in the UK electricity supply industry as well as the household electrical goods, industrial control equipment and instrumentation panels markets.
The DO5000 was chosen by technical manager Jozef Zugaj because it is a high quality product offering flexible functionality. He said: “Not only is the DO5000 the most cost effective solution for us but also the best, with functionality greater in terms of the scope of testing range and output.
“It’s fulfilled our expectations and has impressed with its performance in an extremely demanding, high quality production environment.”
The DO5000 series forms part of a comprehensive range of microhmmeters and precision measurement instrumentation.
BEAMA, the trade association for the UK electrotechnical industry, has voiced some concerns over the Eco Design preparatory study for smart appliances being undertaken under for the European Commission.
The study team started effectively in the Autumn of 2014 and is expected to be finished in September 2016. This study will provide the European Commission with an analysis of all technical, economic, environmental, market and societal aspects that are relevant for a broad market introduction of smart appliances.
On behalf of its members BEAMA has produced a special white paper on the scope of the study to and flag up some of the issues they have identified.
BEAMA’s interest in the preparatory study stems from questions on energy efficiency and smart control. In particular the paper argues that in order to determine smart control requirements for appliances wider system applications must be considered and this goes beyond energy efficiency to include controls for flexible loads.
The risk is that Eco Design sets measures for smart appliances that may be in conflict with future demand response applications. Full details of BEAMAs response is here
This is a first step, with more detailed guidance to be developed for the commission as BEAMA aims to ensure any decision made on the viability of implementing measures for smart appliances under Eco Design are fit for purpose in the UK and do not limit market growth and uptake of smart devices.
The first survey on counterfeit electrical products ever done in Africa has been conducted by Schneider Electric to determine the extent of the problem and highlight actions to mitigate its spread across the continent.
The report says counterfeit electrical products are common in all African countries, representing 40% to 80% of their markets, with China the main source of the fake merchandise entering the continent, followed by other Asian countries.
The five most common counterfeit electrical products in Africa, according to the survey, are, in order: cables, breakers, sockets, switches and extension cords.
Beyond the market impact of counterfeit goods, such products also pose a safety risk. The Schneider Electric survey was conducted in 11 African countries: Cameroon, Republic of the Congo, DR Congo, Ghana, Guinea, Ivory Coast, Kenya, Nigeria, Tanzania and Uganda with more than 500 “high level” officials and professionals contacted by 37 trained African investigators.
Professionals who have been struggling against counterfeiting asked for two main actions, Schneider said.
The first is for authorities to introduce stiffer controls and repercussions against counterfeiters and distributors. The second is expected from all manufacturers to help customers better identify the right channels and the right products. Full article here
The general standard for luminaires and lighting products has been updated and is now available. BS EN 60598-1:2015 Luminaires – General requirements and tests specifies the essential electrical safety and performance requirements of all types of luminaires.
The 2015 edition has been completely updated to include over 20 major changes that reflect the latest developments in lighting.
Revisions focus on how the product is to be made and tested, and include features for products with LED lighting, high frequency controls, fittings without ballast and fittings with non-replaceable ‘lamps’
Among other changes, under design guidelines, new requirements are specified for the application of over-voltage protection components and for components that bridge double insulation. New advice is provided on the levels of isolation required between low voltage and safety low voltage and a new category of ‘functional’ low voltage has been introduced. For details visit www.bsigroup.co.uk.
We will exhibiting at Manufacturing and Engineering North East (stand D15) on 8-9th July 2015 at the Metro Radio Arena, Newcastle, UK. On display will be the HAL 104 production line safety tester, Sentinel quality and conformance tester and the DO5000 digital microhmmeter
For all upcoming Seaward events visit our events page
Do you use Clare or Cropico equipment? - If you think you may have a story for future e-news bulletins, please let us know by contacting us here.
<< back to all Seaward news