In January 2009, the International Electrotechnical Commission has published two new standards for Low-voltage switchgear and controlgear assemblies, the IEC 61439-1 & 2. These standards replaced the IEC 60439-1 standard and provide more safety, continuity of service, and compliance with end-user requirements
Let’s examine the certification process and the reason why compliance with IEC standards is such a priority for Schneider Electric.
Certification is a procedure by which an entity provides written assurance that a product meets specified requirements. It generally concerns the safety of the product, its performance, its suitability, environmental criteria etc. This entity is governed by an international standard (Guide IEC 65) that stipulates the requirements. The certification bodies must respect a certain number of important requirements that ensure impartiality, independence, equity, confidentiality, competence, and transparency.
Standardisation and certification in the electrical field has become structured over the last one hundred years and has continually adapted to changes in techniques and in world trade. Therefore, Schneider Electric has always been alert to the slightest change in order to adapt its products to the legislation changes. But why?
Conformity with IEC standards guarantees that Schneider Electric products are more than safe and efficient. Therefore, switchboard systems, such as Prisma+, Prisma iPM, OKKEN, Blokset, allow Schneider Electric to build up customer confidence and loyalty.
Moreover, compliance to IEC Standards provides more agility in this world more and more complex. Indeed, thirty years ago, in order to sell a product in a specific country, Schneider Electric had to bring that product to the country testing organization for testing and certification. That long and expensive process had to be repeated for every new country Schneider Electric wanted to sell in. In 1985, the IEC provides a solution the IECEE International Commission for Conformity Testing of Electrical Equipment. The aim of the system is “to facilitate international trade in certain electrical equipment. Its objective is the reciprocal acceptance of certified test results between participating countries in order to simplify certification at the national level”.
Therefore, Schneider Electric made conformity with IEC standards one of its priorities in order to assure the quality, safety and performance of its products as well as to implement a quicker and world wide “speed to market” strategy.
Find more information about the new IEC 61439-1 standard and Schneider Electric's offer for panelbuilding on the Panelbuilders website (www.PanelBuilders. schneider-electric.com).