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Electromagnetic Compatibility (EMC) Directive


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Who Needs to Comply with the EMC Directive?

The EMC Directive is one of the 'New Approach' Directives and applies across all 27 member states of the European Union (EU). The Directive applies to all electronic or electrical products liable to cause or be disturbed by electromagnetic interference (EMI).  As a result a large number of manufacturers in the electronics or electrical industries need to ensure that their products are compliant with the requirements of the Directive and be able to demonstrate that this is the case in order to affix a valid CE Marking

EMC Directive in Brief

Compliance with the Electromagnetic Compatibility (EMC) Directive 2004/108/EC is mandatory for nearly all electrical and electronic equipment imported into the European Union (EU). The EMC Directive requires that all products should comply with the basic protection requirements;

  • The electromagnetic disturbance generated by the apparatus does not exceed a level specified in harmonised EMC Standards. This level is that above which radio and telecommunications equipment or other equipment may not be able to operate as intended.
  • It has a level of immunity to the electromagnetic disturbance to be expected in its intended use, which allows it to operate without unacceptable degradation of its specified performance.

The EMC Directive and Routes to Compliance:

The EMC Directive has two methods manufacturers can follow to demonstrate compliance:

Technical File Route - by performing a Technical EMC Assessment of the product.  The manufacturer must provide detailed documentary evidence that the product complies with the protection requirements in all possible configurations representative of its intended use. The results of this assessment are compiled in a Technical File.

Standards Route - by the use of EMC Harmonised Standards.  The correct and complete application of all-relevant harmonised standards whose references have been published in the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU) for all its intended operating conditions and configurations.

Technical Documentation

The documentation required by the EMC Directive consists of:

- The Technical File - the manufacturer compiles evidence that the product complies with the essential requirements of the Directive.  The purpose of this is to enable conformity of the product with the protection requirements to be assessed.

- The EC Declaration of Conformity - compliance with the essential requirements is declared by an EC Declaration of Conformity issued by the manufacturer.  The EC Declaration of Conformity must contain the following information:

  1. a reference to the EMC Directive
  2. an identification of the product to which it refers
  3. the name and address of the manufacturer and where applicable, the name and address of his authorised representative
  4. a dated reference to the specifications under which conformity is declared to ensure the conformity of the apparatus with the provisions of the EMC Directive
  5. the date of that declaration; and
  6. the identity and signature of the person empowered to bind the manufacturer or his authorised representative

Independent third party assesments by a Notified Body are no longer mandatory, however some manufacturers, before making a claim of conformity to the EMC Directive and affixing a CE Marking choose to have their products assessed.  Notified Bodies are appointed by national government authorities in each European member state.  

Technology International (Europe) Ltd is a Notified Body for the EMC Directive and can assess claims of conformity to the Directive on behalf of manufacturers.  Successful claims of conformity submitted for assessment are supported by a written Notified Body statement from Technology International.

Why use Technology International Group?

The Technology International Group has over 20 years experience of assisting clients with their regulatory compliance needs. With its extensive knowledge and highly qualified team of engineers Technology International can provide effective and efficient solutions that minimise the impact on cost and resources of complying with the EMC Directive.

The services offered by the Technology International Group include:

  • Product Compliance Reviews to ensure that a product meets all essential requirements prior to testing
  • EMC Testing, including identifying test requirements, preparing test plans and arranging or undertaking cost-effective testing
  • Advice on statutory obligations, for maintaining a valid CE Mark

With offices in the US, Europe and Asia the Technology International Group is recognised globally as an expert in the fields of EMC and Mechanical & Electrical safety.

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