Regulatory Compliance Testing
Regulatory Compliance Testing: Streamlining Product Development and Safety
In today’s era of continued global economic growth, manufacturers face numerous product regulatory compliance requirements and standards. These regulations are primarily focused on two crucial areas: Electromagnetic Compatibility (EMC) and Product Safety. Adhering to regulatory compliance requirements, including EMC testing and product safety, is essential for ensuring the quality, reliability, and marketability of products.
VPI Technology, a reputable multi-disciplinary technology firm, specializes in certification and testing for electronic devices. We provide comprehensive regulatory compliance testing services to meet the standards set by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), Industry Canada (IC), Conformité Européene (CE), and UL. Our expertise centers around three key testing areas: Electromagnetic Interference (EMI) testing, including 5GHz Dynamic Frequency Selection (DFS) testing; Electromagnetic Compatibility (EMC) testing; and Safety testing.
EMC requirements exist in nearly all countries worldwide, and many nations have harmonized their EMC standards. Developing a product with EMC considerations in mind is crucial. Testing your product against the appropriate EMC standards early in the development cycle is important to minimize last-minute design changes that can potentially delay time to market.
Federal Communications Commission (FCC)
In the United States, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) governs the regulatory compliance for EMC. FCC Part 15 of the Rules outlines the requirements for unintentional (incidental) radiators and low-powered unlicensed transmitters. Common low-powered unlicensed transmitters include mobile phones, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Zigbee, and Z-Wave.
Innovation, Science, and Economic Development Canada (ISED)
In Canada, Innovation Science and Economic Development Canada (ISED), also known as Industry Canada (IC), serves as the certification body for intentional and unintentional (incidental) radiators. ISED covers technical specifications, administrative requirements, and other conditions related to the marketing of such radiators.
Voluntary Control Council for Interference (VCCI)
Emissions control in Japan is performed on a voluntary basis, under the supervision of the Voluntary Control Council for Interference (VCCI).
The radiated and conducted emissions limits established by the VCCI are identical to those of CISPR 22.
Product Safety Testing
Product safety testing is a critical aspect of regulatory compliance that must be considered during the product design phase. In the United States, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) administers product safety standards for the workplace. Any product used in the workplace must be approved by a Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratory (NRTL) to ensure its safe use. NRTL approval applies to products used in workplaces subject to OSHA’s jurisdiction, including many private employers and federal government facilities.
Global Common Harmonized Product Safety Standards
Most countries around the world have established product safety requirements, with many European and other nations adopting common harmonized product safety standards. The United States and Canada also follow similar harmonization. As with EMC testing, evaluating and testing your product against the appropriate product safety standards early in development can expedite time to market.
European CE Mark
The European CE testing primarily focuses on EMC and Safety, emphasizing the protection of the public and consumers. Harmonization with national regulations is a key objective to reduce regulatory barriers between European countries and facilitate the movement of goods. To obtain the CE Mark through CE testing, manufacturers must adhere to the EMC (2014/30/EU), Low Voltage (2014/35/EU), and Radio Equipment (2014/53/EU) Directives, where applicable, and reference applicable harmonized standards.
Other Regulatory Considerations
In addition to EMC and product safety testing, other regulatory considerations include FDA regulations for medical devices, Energy Star compliance, and compliance with the Restriction of Hazardous Substances Directive (RoHS).
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VPI has demonstrated its competence to perform regulatory compliance testing by being accredited by the U.S. Department of Commerce, National Voluntary Laboratory Accreditation Program (NVLAP) (Lab Code 100272-0).
Accreditation criteria are established in accordance with the U.S. Code of Federal Regulations (CFR, Title 15 Part 285), NVLAP Procedures and General Requirements, and encompass the requirements of ISO/IEC 17025 and the relevant requirements of ISO 9002.