Electronics Production | November 12, 2007
Partnership between UL and I²PS
Underwriters Laboratories is the first testing and certification company to offer extensive international certifications for electrotechnical components and products used in industrial automation technology under the terms of the CB scheme.
The CB scheme is an international system for certifying the safety of electrical and electrotechnical products that was launched by the international electrotechnical commission, the IECEE. The CB scheme facilitates the mutual acceptance of tests in the countries party to the multi-national IEC agreement. Until now, the CB scheme was used by testing organisations mostly to provide international certificates for consumer goods, for example as the basis for the GS testing mark. Underwriters Laboratories is now using the CB scheme for the first time to also certify electrotechnical components and industrial automation technology products for access to international markets. Companies now only have to turn to one partner for their international approvals: UL.* CB certificates are accepted in virtually all countries, including those that are not party to the agreement. The CB scheme was given a particular boost thanks to the fact that relevant testing makes access to the Chinese CCC mark much easier than it is normally. The CB Scheme also provides access to the D mark as part of the Nordic Certification Scheme, the GOST-R mark in Russia, the Inmetro mark in Brazil and the S mark in Argentina, for example. As a special service to industry, UL currently offers the D mark as part of the CB report. With the D mark, manufacturers can not only confirm the safety of their products in Europe, but also, with the CB report, achieve further local testing marks in order to expand their business in other regions. It is therefore a natural step, in this context, to also seek cover for North America with the UL Mark. The goal of Underwriters Laboratories is to make the industry's access to international markets as easy as possible. This is why Underwriters Laboratories has extended its range of certification solutions through cooperation with the Institute for International Product Safety GmbH, the I²PS in Bonn. I²PS acts as the CB Testing Laboratory (CBTL) under the National Certification Body (NCB) of UL Denmark. UL is thus able to take advantage of the vast wealth of expertise and the I²PS's broad testing spectrum in the field of electrical engineering, electronics and environmental simulation. The I²PS's testing services range from materials testing, the simulation of environmental stresses such as climate, vibration/shock, protection class and EMC testing to short-circuit and internal arc tests with currents of up to 300,000 A. What's more, I²PS also offers state-of-the-art analytical tools such as high-speed video, laser vibrometers and X-ray testing systems for more detailed investigations.