Wednesday, February 29, 2012

2011 market surveillance report EU –are tablet PCs a target for 2012?

English: CE logo

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Bundesnetzagentur (Federal Network Agency) of Germany, for Electricity, Gas, Telecommunications, Post and Railway has the responsibility to carry out the market surveillance under the EMC and R&TTE Directives.

The agency published a summary of the 2011 market surveillance campaign on its web site. The campaign’s primary focus in 2011 was with the EMC directive and in particular, LED lighting equipment. The report also combines results from the 2010 and 2011 campaigns to give a summary overall and to achieve a low error probability due to the larger sample size.

For some background on emissions concerning LED product, see July 2011 post “Radio interference from LED lighting”.

The surveillance looked at administrative conformity, such as marking, documentation and declarations, as well as the technical aspects of the directive namely compliance with the emissions and immunity requirements. A total of 168 products were sampled in 2011.

On the administrative side, the surveillance found that 76.8% of the samples were compliant with the CE marking requirements, while only 39.9% were compliant with the Declaration of Conformity (DoC) requirements.

For the technical assessment, 61.5% of product complied with the radio emissions requirement, and 91.3% were found immune to specific interference phenomenon, out of 46 products tested overall.

In total, only 17.3% of LED lighting equipment was found to be fully compliant.

For the “reactive market surveillance”, the overall rate of non-compliance for electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) was 38.9%. For radio and telephone terminal equipment (R&TTE) a majority, 65.5%, was found non-compliant according to the report, but most concerning was that 75.6% of the R&TTE products checked were non-compliant with the safety and health measurement requirements.

The 2011 surveillance resulted in 90 EMC sales bans, 177 R&TTE sales bans, 353 “memoranda of understanding” between the two directives, and total revenues of €1,046,000

The report details some objectives for 2012 indicating supporting the revision of the EMC and R&TTE directives and transposition into national law, including harmonizing product assessment for market surveillance, and increasing cooperation with European market surveillance and customs authorities as well as adapting the national database for market surveillance results, to the European ICSMS database.

Two product group targets were mentioned for 2012, one a coordinated German/Dutch campaign targeting tablet PCs focused on the R&TTE directive, and another targeting “Ready-made connecting devices”, or laptop power supplies.



Market surveillance statistics 2011

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

New EMC Directive

European flag outside the Commission

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I thought I would include this in my Q&A series.  I have been receiving these questions often,

Do you expect that a new EMC directive will be coming ?


What impact may it have on my current test plan or program ? 

The answer  to part one is yes, and it could be very soon. As part of  the “Goods package”, the current EMC directive, 204/108/EC, is being amended in what is called an alignment with the New Legislative Framework of the European Union (or NLF). The EMC directive is part of what is called an “Alignment Package”. Eight other directives will also be processed in this alignment.

On the second question, the first thing to note is that the new approach directives are not technical in nature, but rather legal documents. Think of them as the “Law” of the land on the topics they cover. How you comply with the laws are another matter. The technical aspects are primarily addressed by Harmonised Standards or “EN” specifications. So, the EMC technical requirements, i.e. your testing, should not be impacted by this amendment to the EMC directive. While it is expected that the scope of the EMC directive will remain essentially the same, anytime that a directive comes up for amendment, interested parties look at it as an opportunity to address issues they may want included, see for example my post on cables being proposed:

The areas that would see significant change are;

  • your documents (Declaration of Conformity) will change.
  • A new directive number may require documents be modified, such as test reports, however there should be a reasonable transition period.
  • Traceability requirements and product labeling, with specific identifying information on each product.
  • Economic operators must keep records of supplier and distributor (already required for consumer goods)
  • New supply chain duties, harmonized across the EU.
  • Enforcement authority will be able to target more directly those infringing due to supply chain reporting requirements.
  • Expectation is that Post market surveillance activities could increase substantially (this is one of the main points of the “Goods Package”)

If not already, please subscribe to updates of the EMCrules blog. The blog is helpful in providing timely information on rule changes, and other topical news, that may affect our broad clientele. Comments are welcome.



EMC directive at EUR-Lex -  32004L0108

/* COM/2011/0763 final */  (Alignment of ten technical harmonisation directives to Decision No 768/2008/EC)

Marketing of products - CE conformity marking

New Legislative Framework (NLF) Alignment Package

Proposals to Align Nine Directives with the New Legislative Framework – Published by BIS Department for Business Innovation & Skills

Single market for goods New Legislative Framework

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Industry Canada publishes new / updated Radio standards

On January 28th Industry Canada published the following radio standards; (Link to IC web site)

  • Radio Standards Specification RSS-111, Issue 4: Broadband Public Safety Equipment Operating in the Band 4940-4990 MHz, which sets out the requirements for certification of radio transmitters and receivers in the band 4940-4990 MHz for public safety applications;
  • Radio Standards Specification RSS-182, Issue 5: Maritime Radio Transmitters and Receivers in the Band 156-162.5 MHz, which sets out the requirements for certification of radio transmitters and receivers in the maritime service in the band 156-162.5 MHz; and


In addition Industry Canada announced changes to RSS-Gen and RSS-310 , effective immediately , via notice NOTICE 2012-DRS0126. These changes modify section 2.2 of RSS-Gen covering Receivers, and noted that section 3.1 from RSS-310 is no longer required.

RSS-Gen section ‘ 2.2 Receivers ’ clarifies that ;

Only radiocommunication receivers operating in stand-alone mode within the band 30 MHz to 960 MHz and scanner receivers are subject to Industry Canada requirements


All other receivers are excluded from any Industry Canada certification, testing, labeling and reporting requirements.

Monday, February 20, 2012

FCC Calling for Volunteers with Expansion of Nationwide Broadband Tests

Character for children of FCC"Broadband"

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The FCC is back for a second round of volunteers, this time for the “2012 Measuring Broadband America” process. The FCC plans to issue two “Measuring Broadband Reports” for 2012. This time the FCC will be expanding the study group into new regions of the country, and include more technologies within the study. The first round begins in March 2012.

The first study examined offerings from 13 wire line broadband providers with the help of thousands of volunteers during March of 2011. The report, and other information, can be found at

The FCC is requesting volunteers. Volunteers that sign up, will receive a free wireless router from SamKnows, an FCC contractor. The router will be pre-programed to measure broadband speeds to the home. For more information on how to volunteer,  visit

see the FCC Public Notice at

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Solve for X: Anthony Sutera on low power wireless everywhere

What do you think? Completely Impossible?

To quote the 1st of Arthur C. Clarke’s three laws of prediction
 “If an elderly but distinguished scientist says that something is possible, he is almost certainly right; but if he says that it is impossible, he is very probably wrong”

Is this the 1st stage of Clarke’s Law of Revolutionary Ideas, or just Science Fiction? If it is for real, this would indeed be a revolution in antenna design. If not, it's still an intriguing thought, and on that alone the video is worth a look.

In an article from Technology review back in 2009, a process for creating nano-capacitors developed by Sang Bok Lee, and Gary Rubloff was described. The process was similar to the ones used to make memory chips, orders of magnitude more difficult than the "spray on" method described in the Solve for X video.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Are on-board electric vehicle battery chargers exempt from FCC equipment authorization?

English: Google Electric Car Seciurity 2008 (V...
Image via Wikipedia
Under Title 47, Part 15 Subpart B § 15.103, the first item on the list of exempted devices is
“(a) A digital device utilized exclusively in any transportation vehicle including motor vehicles and aircraft.”
The clear answer is “Yes” to the question, “are electric vehicle battery chargers exempt”,… right? … What would you say?

As is the case with much of part 15 subpart B, in order to comply with the intent, you need a little common sense, good familiarity with electromagnetic energy propagation, the ability to think like an FCC engineer, and finally, a Knowledge Database publication (KDB) from the FCC with a clear “yes” or “no” answer to any question you may have, and you may have many.

See Publication Number: 892282
Is a battery charger and associated digital electronics on-board a vehicle that is used for charging the vehicles battery while parked and connected to AC power lines exempt from an equipment authorization under 15.103.
No. Section 15.103, Exclusions, paragraph (a) does not apply to battery chargers for electric vehicles that can be used for charging while stationary and connected to an AC power line. The exemption is only intended for digital devices which operate primarily when the vehicle is operating in a mobile environment such as on a road or highway where the potential for interference is low. When stationary and connected to the AC power line, typically in a residential environment such as a home garage or driveway, the potential for interference by both AC lines conducted and radiated emissions is greater. The battery chargers and associated electronics on board an electric vehicle are therefore subject to an equipment authorization under the verification procedure as a Part 15  Class B or Class A (industrial vehicles) unintentional radiator (switching power supply and digital device).

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

OET requesting comment on TV bands database system test

The FCC's Office of Engineering and Technology (OET) is requesting comment on the 45-day public trial of Telcordia Technologies Inc.’s (Telcordia’s) TV bands database system that was completed on January 20, 2012.

Link to OET request;
OET Request - ET Docket No. 04-186