Testing the electromagnetic compatibility of products at the VDE Institute

Mandatory EMC certification for non-telecommunications, electrical products in South Africa

South African import regulations require EMC (electromagnetic compatibility) tests for most electronic products. To that end, a new program for issuing EMC certificates in South Africa has now been implemented.


Christine Clark

SABS and ICASA have agreed to subject all non-telecommunications, electrical devices that will be released in the South African market to a conformity assessment procedure and introduce mandatory certification for the same. Furthermore, regular monitoring is conducted by the South African Bureau of Standards (SABS) and the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA). The VDE Institute provides assistance in the approval process for these products in South Africa. The certificate of conformity is valid for three years from the date of issue.

All non-telecommunications, electrical products whose components can produce electromagnetic interference are subject to mandatory certification. As a result, the following device groups are affected:

  • Information Technology Equipment (ITE)
  • Household devices, power tools and similar devices
  • Sound and TV receivers along with the accompanying equipment (terrestrial and/or satellite)
  • Electrical lighting and similar devices
  • Non-telecommunications industrial, scientific and medical (ISM) equipment
  • Uninterrupted power supply systems (UPS)
  • Vehicles, boats and combustion engines
  • Fire and burglar alarm systems and public alarm systems
  • Low-voltage switch gears and gearboxes
  • Low-voltage power supplies (DC output)
  • Electrical devices for measurement, control and laboratories
  • Adjustable electrical drive systems

Telecommunications-enabled, electrical devices are subject to other mandatory certification processes, irrespective of the new regulations.

Only accredited test laboratories that have been verified by SABS can test electrical devices for electromagnetic compatibility. In addition to the already long-established certification of many electrical products with regard to electrical safety and for telecommunications-enabled electrical devices, the VDE Institute assists its customers with an additional service during the certification of their products in South Africa.

Source: SABS

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