IEC 62368-1 Safety Standard

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In 2014 the Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) released Edition 2.0 of the 62368-1 standard. This standard covers hazards and hazard prevention in the domain of information technology (ITE) and audio/visual (A/V) equipment, including consumer electronics, musical instruments, office appliances, and telecom hardware, and is intended to replace IEC 60950-1 and IEC 60065 sometime in 2019.

IEC 62368-1:2014 recognizes that requiring all existing certified components to transition to the new standard would impose a tremendous burden on manufacturers and certification bodies alike, and so in clause 4.1.1 states that, “Components and subassemblies that comply with IEC 60950-1 or IEC 60065 are acceptable as part of equipment covered by this standard without further evaluation other than to give consideration to the appropriate use of the component or sub-assembly in the end product.”

This second version of the standard is expected to be more widely adopted than the first, which was only adopted by the U.S., Canada, the Netherlands, Denmark, and South Africa. With the publication of the updated standard, member countries of the CB Scheme will be required to publish their national and regional differences from the IEC standard, as well as publishing their national standards based upon 2nd Ed.

In Europe, CENELEC is publishing EN 62368-1:2014, with a date of availability (DAV) in August and date of withdrawal (DOW) set for June 20, 2019. When these dates are accepted by the European Commission and subsequently published in the Official Journal of the European Union, the date of cessation of presumption of conformity of the previous legacy standards (60065 & 60950-1) with the low voltage directive will be the DOW. Manufacturers must demonstrate compliance to EN 62368-1 for all products placed on the market after the DOW.

The U.S. and Canada are expected to set mandatory compliance dates aligning with the EU; that is, mid 2019. New product certifications after this date will not be issued based on 60950-1 or 60065. Products that are already certified in the U.S. or Canada under 60950-1 or 60065 at the time of the 2019 transition date will remain certified for quite some time (no firm date has been set by the certification bodies as of this publication).

Other countries are also working toward publishing national standards based upon IEC 62368-1:2014; however, adoption by other countries, particularly in the Asian region, will undoubtedly lag North America.

Globtek’s GTM96 series of product will have safety approvals for 60601-1, 60950-1, 60335-1 and 62368-1. This should create a greater market acceptance for these products, particularly after 2019.

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