The VDE Institute at a glance
Nationally and internationally, we ensure that your products meet the applicable standards in terms of quality, health, environmental protection, safety and social responsibility in almost every market in the world. We have a wide range of accreditations and approvals and a unique knowledge and know-how when it comes to overcoming regulatory restrictions, market impediments and supply chain problems.
The VDE Testing and Certification Institute helps to improve products during the development phase and to makes market access quick and efficient.
Numbers, data and facts
The approximately 500 employees of the VDE Institute carry out about 100,000 tests annually for about 7000 domestic and foreign manufacturers. Around 200,000 types of electrical products from 50 countries carry VDE certification marks and are thus subject to continuous product monitoring.
The VDE Institute thus makes an important contribution to
- product safety,
- development of electrotechnical standards,
- update the state of technology,
- product conformity according to EU directives in conjunction with national and international standards and regulations
- protection of the general public from dangers and from electromagnetic incompatibilities when handling electrical appliances.
VDE Institute in Offenbach
VDE TESTLAB Battery and Environment in Offenbach
Overview on our historical development
The VDE Institute and the known VDE mark has existed for more than 96 years. On our experts and our expertise you can rely on.
Leading personalities of German electrotechnology founded the VDE in Berlin on 22 January 1893. Dedication to science, enhancement of progress in the electrotechnology and the propagation as well as profundation of the gained results were the major aims of the Association.
In many years of cooperation, wide circles of electrotechnology took much interest in dedicating their experience to the activities of the VDE in order to adapt the safety of electrical installations and equipment to the state of German electrotechnology.
With the increasing utilization of VDE specifications there was a need to mark appliances in conformity with these specifications. For this reason, a testing agency was founded in 1920 in Berlin with the task to test electrotechnical products (Installation materials, appliances, cables and cords etc.) for conformity with VDE standards and beyond that to undertake preparatory steps for the solution of technical tasks of the VDE.
The collapse of Germany in the year 1945 meant an intermediate ceasure of the activities of the VDE.
In Berlin, the seat of the Association at that time, the responsible British occupant force implemented a trust administration for the VDE. With the exception of the lecturing service which had to be suspended by order of the authorities, the core activities of the VDE central office could be revived gradually by a small staff of highly qualified employees. Main topics were the administration of VDE standards, activities of the VDE Testing Institute, the making available of the funds of the ETZ publishing house, reformation of the FNE committees, the starting of standardization work and the reestablishment of contacts to other VDE localities and dislocation centres.
By order of the military command, the VDE was dissolved on 6 May 1946. On 11 May 1946, the VDE House and VDE Berlin was subjected to financial control.
The activities concerning VDE specifications and standards for electrotechnology which had been started with many efforts obtained an intermediate home in the German Standardization Committee (Deutscher Normenausschuss) on initiative of relevant circles of the Berlin electrotechnology. This organization was operable together with a newly established testing laboratory.
In Western Germany, however, it was possible to gradually establish a new VDE. The activities of the VDE Testing Institute were started in 1948 in Wuppertal. By the middle of the year 1949 a number of 487 applications for testing had been received, among them 35% of thermal appliances and 43% installation materials. On 16 May 1949, in Bacharach the "Association of German Electrical Engineers on the united economic territory" (Verband Deutscher Elektrotechniker (VDE) im vereinigten Wirtschaftsgebiet) with head office in Frankfurt am Main was established. The testing institute moved to Frankfurt on 4 May 1950. On 20 February 1961 the VDE House in Stresemannallee 21 is officially inaugurated. The VDE Testing Institute was accommodated in the same building on a surface area of 2000 m². On 22 January 1968, the VDE Institute starts operations in the buildings at Merianstrasse 28 in Offenbach am Main. Laboratories and administration building comprise a surface area of around 4300 m² on a terrain of 17 000 m². After completion of the first extension on 18 May 1983 and the second extension on 6 December 1988 the surface area was increased to 17 000 m².
The name of VDE Testing and Certification Institute was adopted in 1990 in order to express both functions - testing and certification. Today, its scope of testing comprises nearly the entire range of electrotechnical products. As one of the leading institutes in its area, the independent VDE Institute with its 500 employees and with accreditations on national and international level contributes greatly to safety and quality of electrotechnical products and systems. Testing and certification together with factory and market surveillance are corner stones for safe products on the market. Therefore, they describe a socio-political task for the benefit of consumer safety.