Product Safety Engineering
many years has PSE been involved in the Compliance Industry?
began as a safety laboratory in 1986, working with ITE manufacturers
to list their products with UL and CSA. PSE quickly expanded operations to include
an EMC/EMI/TELECOM test facility so that we may deliver a total international
key player on our engineering staff has an extensive and expert background in
their respective field. Unlike most oversized agency labs, the PSE EMC
facility has seen NO turnover on the engineering staff in over ten years.
This means that you can enjoy the familiarity and knowledge base that grows with
each and every project. Our Open Area
Test Site (OATS) currently performs testing to meet the requirements for
US (FCC), Europe (CE Marking), Japan (VCCI), Australia/New Zealand and numerous
other Worldwide markets.
PSE's mailing address? Where should I send product / information?
12955 Bellamy Brothers Blvd
Dade City, FL 33525
(352) 588-2209Contact Us
Fax (352) 588-2544
I contact at PSE to obtain a quotation?
a PSE Marketing Representative via phone, fax, or e-mail and we will supply a quotation
including schedule and time frame for the product evaluation. From that point on, your PSE Marketing
Representative will act as your single-point-of-contact for all future inquires.
588-2209 Ext. 102
- Federal Communications Agency
FCC Part 15?
15 is a federal regulation that sets exact limitations on the amount of electromagnetic
interference (EMI) allowable from digital computing and other electronic devices as
diverse as wristwatches and musical instruments, typewriters and telephones. It was
promulgated by the Federal Communications Commission under its authority to regulate the
airwaves, especially to limit interference with broadcasting.
electronic devices (unintentional radiators) that contain clocks/oscillators which operate
at a frequency above 9kHz must be tested under FCC part 15 Subpart B, radio frequency
rules & regulations. The FCC has broken down Part 15 into two categories, Class A
(commercial) and Class B (residential).
FCC's penalties for non-compliant products include halting all distribution, levy of fines
and publication of public notices.
the new FCC Part 15 Self Declaration Procedures?
the new procedures for DoC/Self Declaration there is no longer a need to submit/certify
computing devices and peripherals with the FCC.
manufacture simply has the testing performed at a A2LA approved OATS, applies the new FCC
label to there product, and issues a Declaration of Conformity to be shipped with the
product. The real benefit is that there is longer a submittal to the FCC, so a product can
hit the market as soon as it is shown to be in compliance, saving several weeks in the
display a product at a Trade Show that is not in compliance with the FCC's Code of Federal
Regulations? (e.g. Part 15 & Part 68).
You can display a product, in the U.S., that hasn't yet meet the FCC requirements
provide you post a statement informing the consumer of the product's
non-compliant status. The verbiage of the statement, as defined in the
Part 15 rules, can be obtained by request through the PSE Marketing Dept.
in emissions limits?
heard that the emissions requirements for Europe, Japan, the US and several other
countries are all very similar. Is it possible to perform one test that covers several
markets for emissions?
on the type of product that you manufacture, it may be possible to perform one emissions
test, generally based on the CISPR 22 limits, and only perform deviations for the other
it is important to confirm that your test lab is qualified and accredited to perform
testing for these different markets. For example, the VCCI (Japan) requires that the
testing laboratory be a member, and if you are going to self declare a computing device to
meet FCC Part 15 requirements, the lab must be A2LA accredited. PSE holds both
of these accreditations.
in mind that whether you are trying to meet EMC or safety standards, it is always
important to define all intended markets before testing begins. PSE always strives to meet
our client's needs in the most cost effective and time efficient course possible. By
having a clear understanding of which markets you are seeking, we will be in a better
position to satisfy your needs.
the FCC mean by Class A or Class B?
device which is marketed for use in an industrial application and is not intended for use
in the home or residential area. Since the product is being sold to a commercial market,
the emissions limits are significantly less stringent than Class B (residential) devices.
Products that fall under the category of Class A do not require an official submittal, but
simply need a Verification test performed and the data must be keep on hand by the
device that is marketed for use in the home or a residential area by the customer. Class B
devices can require either Verification, Certification, or Self Declaration depending on
the type of product. Class B Verification is for devices that are marketed for in home
use, but are not permanently connected to a personal computer. Computing devices and
peripherals need to meet the same test limits, but the formal data needs to be submitted
to the FCC for Certification, or the manufacturer can choose to issue a Declaration of
Conformity under the new FCC DoC/Self Declaration Procedures.
my product experiences a failure during the formal testing? Can PSE provide engineering /
PSE employs a staff of experienced engineers whose chief responsibility is providing
engineering assistance to bring our client's product into compliance. Whether you are
looking for pre-compliance design review, a quick retro fit, or complex board level
modifications, PSE's dedicated team of engineers will provide a level of experience and
service that far exceed industry standards.
the FCC Part 15 rules applicable in Canada?
Industry Canada has its own rules for governing the RF spectrum and
telecommunications equipment. Conveniently, the Canadian rules are almost identical
to the FCC rules in most areas. In many cases, compliance to the FCC's
Part 15 automatically makes a product compliant to the IC's ICES-003 equivalent.
issue to be aware of involves application for formal approval (telecom &
transmitters). An intentional radiator or a telecom device must be
registered with the FCC and Industry Canada separately.
The rules that govern these devices are very similar, but each agency will
require an individual submittal of applications and supporting paperwork.
VCCI (Japan) - Voluntary Control
Council for Interference
How do I
test and register a product with the VCCI for Japan?
the name suggests, the Voluntary Control Council for Interference by Information
Technology Equipment, is a voluntary organization which regulates computing devices and
peripherals in Japan. The VCCI focuses on the emissions of the product (similar to FCC
Part 15 / EN 55022).
key to this process is that the manufacturer must use a test lab that is a member of the
VCCI, like PSE, and the manufacturer must also become a member of the VCCI. The PSE staff
is happy to guide clients through the membership process.
the EMC directive?
EMC directive is just one of many pieces of European legislation designed to produce
uniform technical regulations throughout Europe and to foster trade between European
countries. Because the standards have been selected mostly from existing international
standards it is hoped to have a neutral effect with the rest of the World.
put, the EMC directive requires products to generate no harmful electromagnetic emissions
and be immune to defined electromagnetic disturbances and phenomena.
Magnetic Compatibility is the ability of an electrical / electronic device or system to
function reliably in a typical electromagnetic environment (such as an industrial shop
floor or a domestic home) while not unduly affecting that environment.
is not measurable as such, but it is possible to test equipment by monitoring its
emissions, or subjecting it to simulated emissions to establish Electro Magnetic
Compatibility against internationally recognized standards.
the CE marking actually mean?
CE marking on a product indicates that you are sure your product complies with all the
applicable European directives and you can provide evidence if required.
marking is not an approval like UL or CSA which always involve third party testing or
agency certification. CE simply indicates the product complies with the directives and
applicable standards. Many other Directives may be applicable to a given product and PSE
will help determine relevant testing as we assist our clients in attaining the "Marks
CE marking has a very distinct layout and must be a minimum of 5mm high.
Artwork Example (282K)
components in your product are CE marked, do you need additional testing?
end product (system) must meet the requirements of all applicable directives. The
compliance of individual components with the requirements of appropriate European Norms
(EN) does not imply compliance of the end product. End product testing ensures that
interconnections as well as manufactured CE marked components are performing to what is
formally stated in their declaration of conformity.
products must comply to the EMC Directive?
to a formal advice document from the European Commission the EMC Directive is applicable
to 'electrical and electronic apparatus, as well as to the equipment and installations
which contain electrical and/or electronic components'. The term, 'apparatus' has been
further defined by the commission as being a finished product delivering an 'intrinsic
function' and 'directly usable by the end user', and can be sold as a single commercial
components do not need marking and the definition of 'component', which has no intrinsic
value, has become a major focus of the electronics industry and in some cases is still
the penalties for non-compliance?
EMC directive requires the EU member states to take all appropriate measures to ensure
agencies will test equipment thought not to comply and if they are proven non-compliant,
prohibit sales in Europe. They can even seize products or entire systems.
person found guilty of knowingly affixing a CE marking to non-compliant equipment is
liable to criminal prosecution. The penalty is a fine and up to 6 months
What is the Low Voltage
Low Voltage Directive (73/23/EEC) directs developers to implement safety standards which
apply to the products and environment they operate in. It applies to all electrical
equipment, designed to operate (normally) in the voltage range 50-1000Vac or 75-1500Vdc.
Can I complete testing
required to show compliance to the LVD myself, or must I use a third party lab?
CE marking according to the Low Voltage Directive is a manufacturer's self declaration of
conformity. The manufacturer is obligated by law to be able to support their claim with
proof that the product meets the essential health and safety requirements of the
directive. This test data can be obtained from a third party, or manufacturers can provide
The benefits of using an outside lab
include tapping into
their expertise, the tractability of the data, and impartial approach.
What do I need to do to sell my product in a
Most countries have regulations for products entering into
their country. PSE provides a high level of knowledge and experience to assist
manufacturers in meeting the regulations for specific countries. Regulations
present many different conformity assessment options. Some options may allow
self-declaration, others may require a manufacturer to obtain third-party
certification in order to be accepted into the marketplace.
best bet is to consult a compliance professional for advice and
assistance. It like law in the US, you could read up on it and represent
yourself in court, but you probably would not be too happy with the results.
What is the CB Scheme?
CB (Certification Body) Scheme is a system designed to facilitate
international trade by establishing mutual acceptance of test reports
participating safety certification organizations (the CB's) in more
countries. The CB Scheme was established by the International Electro
technical Committee for Conformity Testing to Standards for Electrical
PSE has many options available to our clients to facilitate the
approval of a CB Scheme safety report.
the c-tick marking mandatory for Australia?
the time of this writing most product are required to bear the c-tick marking if
distributed in Australia. The market requires emissions testing, similar
to the FCC Part 15 in the US. The distributor must also submit a simple
application to the Spectrum Management Agency in Australia for approval to use
I need the TUV mark in order to ship my product to Europe?
there are actually numerous TUV organizations now in existence, all stemming
from the German national authority. They all offer private certifications
that utilize the TUV name. In some cases, a product may see a marketing benefit
by having the TUV mark, such as a TUV-GS mark, but it is NOT mandatory.
Can you tell me about UL factory inspections?
UL Representatives audit a manufacturer periodically to make sure that a
product continues to be manufactured the same way it was manufactured when it
obtained UL certification. Factory inspections are unannounced and are conducted
on a periodic basis. The UL Representative typically checks random samples of
the customer's current production against the product description (Follow-up
Service Procedure) written by the engineer who originally evaluated the product.
If the product contains materials that are not readily identifiable, UL may
conduct sample testing. Though PSE may provide the engineering, testing
and report writing associated with the UL listing of your product, we will not
be involved in the factory inspection. UL will coordinate all follow-up
service with your firm directly.
What is the Follow-up Service (FUS) Agreement with UL?
The FUS Agreement is a contract which explains the terms under which the UL
Mark may be used. It also explains manufacturers' obligations to continuously
monitor their production so their products continue to meet UL's requirements.
The Follow-up Service Agreement also describes the terms under which
Follow-up Service inspections are conducted. For example, the manufacturer
agrees to allow UL personnel immediate, unannounced and unrestricted access to
any part of the facility in which Listed products and components may be
fabricated, assembled or stored.
Can you explain UL's Initial Production Inspection?
The Initial Production Inspection (IPI) is an inspection scheduled by UL to
coincide with the first production run of UL Listed products. An IPI is
conducted whenever there is a new factory or a Listing is established in a new
product category in an existing factory. The UL Project Engineer may waive the
IPI in an existing factory if the product is in a similar category to a Listed
product already under Follow-up Service at that facility.
During an IPI, the UL Representative performs a complete inspection of the
product using the Follow-up Service Procedure, just as in any regular
inspection. If the product complies with the requirements described in the FUS
Procedure, the UL Representative will release labels to the client to use on
In most respects, an IPI is like any other factory inspection. A major
difference is that the UL Representative schedules an IPI with the client rather
than arriving unannounced. In addition, because the UL Representative may not be
familiar with the product and the factory, the IPI might take a bit longer than
the regular inspection.
What would UL do if the manufacturer was not in
compliance once the UL Listing was obtained?
If the examination discloses that the product is not in compliance with the
requirements, the manufacturer is required either to correct such items or to
remove the Listing Mark from the product.
What is the difference between Listing,
Recognition and Classification?
UL's Listing Service is the most widely recognized of UL's safety
certification programs. The UL Listing Mark on a product is the manufacturer's
representation that samples of that complete product have been tested by UL to
nationally recognized Safety Standards and found to be free from reasonably
foreseeable risk of fire, electric shock and related hazards.
UL's Component Recognition Service covers the testing and evaluation of
component products that are incomplete or restricted in performance
capabilities. These components will later be used in complete end-products or
systems Listed by UL. UL's Component Recognition Service covers millions of
components, such as plastics, wire and printed wiring boards, that may be used
in either very specific, or a broad spectrum of end-products, or even components
such as motors or power supplies.
Products that bear the UL Classification mark have been evaluated for
specific properties, a limited range of hazards, or suitability for use under
limited or special conditions. Typically, products Classified by UL fall into
the general categories of building materials and industrial equipment.
If we are using all Recognized Components,
does our product automatically become UL Listed?
The evaluation of an individual component is obviously limited to certain
parameters. A UL evaluation of a complete product is needed to determine how
these components function as a "system" in your end product. The use
of Recognized Components reduces the complexity of the evaluation and can save
you time and money.
How much does it cost and how long does it
take to have a product tested for UL listing?
Cost varies depending on the product and complexity of test requirements.
Once PSE's engineering staff has reviewed your product information to determine
the scope and time involved in the testing process, we will provide you with a quotation
estimating total time frame and cost. To provide a quotation based on a
brief verbal description of a product would be very unfair to the manufacturer
and may result in a cost limit increase after the project commences. It is
PSE's position to try our best to provide an exact quotation based on a thorough
evaluation of the product's overall construction, intended markets and component
approval status. In order to truly understand the safety related aspects
of your product's design, we often need very detailed documentation or a physical
sample for review.
How many samples are required and
they be returned?
Samples for testing may be required. The number required is determined by the
anticipated test program. Samples should not be sent until requested.
Destructive tests are usually involved in our thorough test programs so, in many
cases, the samples may not be usable as returned. All samples will be returned
unless otherwise indicated by the Applicant.