Company RGM joins the EPSMA
'Embedded Software Verification and Validation in Power Supplies'
'New document - Guidelines for Lifetime Specification of power Converters'
Updated documents released
“Accurate efficiency Measurements”
“PFC Harmonic Current Emissions guide to EN61000-3-2:2014”
“CE marking for Power Supplies”
- Slovenian Test House SiQ joins EPSMA as an affiliate member
- Bourns and Block transformatoren join EPSMA
- Inpotron and Murr Join EPSMA
- EPSMA presents to PSMA at APEC Long Beach 2016
- EPSMA Releases Accurate Efficiency Measurements white paper (Jun 2015)
- EPSMA Releases Lead-free Soldering Guidelines
- New Telecom Power Supply Safety Approval Guidelines from the EPSMA
- Updated EPSMA Guide on PFC
- EPSMA Meets at Electronica, Munich, see below
- EPSMA Guide Helps Engineers with Thermal Measurement Issues
- New Safety Guidelines Available from EPSMA
- European Power Supply Community Concern over IPC-9592 “Guide” see below
- HDP User Group Launches Application Guidelines for Board Mounted Power Supplies, see below.
- EPSMA Identifies Leading Power Electronics Universities in Europe, see below
- EPSMA Reorganises For Growth, see below
- EPSMA Publishes Reliability Prediction Guide
- Cenelec and EPSMA Sign a Cooperation Agreement, see below
- Epsma Withholds Awards Due To Poor Industry Performance, see below
- Is Industry Ready for EN61000-3-2?, See below
- EPSMA Wins Fight Against Anti-Dumping Duties, see below
- STMicroelectronics and Vishay Win EPSMA Awards, see below
- EPSMA Opposes Undermining of EMC Directive, see below
Bourns welcomed as a new member of the EPSMA
Inpotron welcomed as a new member of the EPSMA
Murrelektronik is welcomed as a new member of the EPSMA
Website now features reduced fees for published documents and e-commerce
Standardisation reports for India and China available on website to members - see members’ area
EPSMA presents to PSMA at APEC 2016, Long Beach California
EPSMA vice chairman Paul Lee presented to the AGM of the Power Sources manufacturers Association (PSMA) at the annual APEC convention in California. An update was given of the EPSMA activities and collaboration discussed. See presentation here
EPSMA Releases ‘Accurate Efficiency Measurements’ white paper
The objective of this white paper is to specify a standard, how to determine efficiency of AC-DC and DC-DC power supply units (PSU) accurately and comparably. Thermal steady state is assumed unless stated otherwise.
Deviating measurements result either from random or systematic error. Random errors mainly in the device under test (DUT) are caused by unknown and unpredictable parameters like parts tolerances, which can mostly be described by a Gaussian normal distribution. By referring to a reference DUT, random errors can be neglected in this guide.
The focus is on minimizing systematic errors like:
measurement setup (source, sink, wiring, mounting)
environmental conditions of the DUT (temperature, altitude)
instrument inaccuracy (range, temperature drift)
This 32 page paper was assembled by a team of authorities from power supply and semiconductor manufacturer representatives within the EPSMA.
The paper is freely available for download
EPSMA Releases Lead-free Soldering Guidelines
Wellingborough, UK - 20 February 2013 - Lead-free solder has almost entirely replaced leaded solder in today’s electronics due to the Reduction of Hazardous Substances - RoHS requirements. The resulting change of the soldering processes with associated higher soldering temperatures has gradually been accepted by and implemented in the industry during the last decade (2001 - 2010).
The introduction of lead-free soldering has however introduced a number of new issues which have the potential to influence reliability characteristics in a previously reasonably well understood product area. There are still major concerns regarding lead-free soldering and these new issues arising from the use of different materials manufacturing and assembly processes.
The reliability characteristics of concern include Moisture Sensitive Levels (MSL), Electro-migration in solder joints, Tin Whiskers, Dendrites, Conductive Anodic Filaments (CAF) and how metallization on terminals are affecting reliability.
To raise awareness of these not so commonly understood areas, the European Power Supply Manufacturers Association (EPSMA), has published a paper which examines these reliability characteristics in detail and importantly provides recommendations to minimize, and where possible, avoid any degradation of reliability. The paper is invaluable with its collation of these issues in one document. It includes an extensive reference section which exemplifies the diversity of sources used.
This 24 page paper was assembled by a team of authorities from power supply and semiconductor manufacturer representatives within the EPSMA.
The paper was written for members of EPSMA and is also available now for purchase by non-members.
New Telecom Power Supply Safety Approval Guidelines from the EPSMA
Wellingborough, UK – 10th November – The European Power Supply Manufacturers Association (EPSMA) has launched the latest in its series of power supply safety approval guides, with the new document focused on telecom power supplies. The documents aim to help design engineers in their continuous battle to keep up to date with regard to the latest safety standards and certifications.
This is the fifth such guideline document produced by the EPSMA over the last 3 years. The other guides cover:
Safety approvals of DIN-rail power supplies
Safety requirements for AC/DC power supplies used in hazardous locations
Safety approvals for AC/DC products used in railway applications
Safety approvals for AC/DC power supplies used in medical applications.
All of the guides provide detailed information about the design issues, definitions and useable standards that are appropriate in each case. They are designed to provide engineers with a common understanding of which safety rules and certifications should be used, depending on the final application of the standard. Furthermore, they also give a general interpretation of how different standards requirements for power supplies are realised in practice.
Bernhard Erdl, Chairman of the EPSMA, commented: "Our Technical Committee has invested considerable time and resources in producing these guides which should be very valuable to any companies active in power supply design".
For more information about the guidelines, please contact the EPSMA at www.epmsa.org.
Updated EPSMA Guide on PFC
Wellingborough, UK - 17th December – The European Power Supply Manufacturers Association has just released an updated version of its popular guide to PFC legislation in Europe. This updated document can be downloaded free of charge at the www.epsma.org.
The new document brings the guidance completely up to date, reflecting changes made in EN6100-3-2: 2006 and subsequently. These changes include:
Addition of medical equipment and the partial inclusion of lighting applications.
Minor changes and clarification of requirements for the measurement of harmonics and the application of limits.
Applicability to all electrical and electronic equipment that are connected to the public low-voltage AC distribution network.
Introduction of four classes, which have to fulfil different harmonic current conditions.
The removal of the lower power limit for discharge lighting equipment; for other lighting equipment the lower power limit of 75W has been lowered to 25W.
Commenting on the document’s release, Lars Thorsell, who heads up the EPSMA Technical Committee, said: "Over the last few years, the PFC guide has provided many thousands of engineers across Europe with a valuable overview of the legislative requirements in this complex area. This updated version of the guide will ensure that the EPSMA continues to serve its power supply customers well in understanding the legislation in this important area".
EPSMA Meets at Electronica, Munich
Wellingborough, UK – 19th November – The European Power Supply Manufacturers Association (EPSMA) met at Electronica for its annual general meeting. EPSMA members received presentations on Silicon Carbide (SiC) and Gallium Nitride and its use in power supplies, by industry experts from Cree and Infineon.
The meeting was opened by EPSMA Chairman Bernhard Erdl of PULS. He addressed the members and praised both the management committee and technical committee for its work during the previous twelve months. The organisation now has more than 30 members, made up of leading power supply manufactures, semiconductor suppliers and universities speacialising in power electronics.
The EPSMA Technical Committee Chairman, Lars Thorsell of Powerbrand Consulting, gave an overview of completed and upcoming projects. These included recently updated guidelines regarding Power Factor Correction (PFC) and the fifth in a series of safety guidelines; this one for power supplies in telecommunications. Other ongoing project areas include an energy efficiency database, reliability issues with lead-free soldering, electronic lighting and wide band-gap materials.
Guest presenters from Infineon and Cree were then invited to speak on wide band-gap materials (SiC and GaN). EPSMA members were given an insight into both the technical aspects of these materials, the benefits of their use in power supply design and how the market for SiC and GaN in various applications is predicted to develop over the next few years. A round-table discussion and networking opportunity followed. The EPSMA will meet again in the first quarter of 2011. For further information please contact the Secretariat (email@example.com).
About the EPSMA
The European Power Supply Manufacturers Association (EPSMA) was formed in 1995 to represent the specialised needs of the power supply industry in Europe. The association currently has around 30 members from 13 countries, employing over 8,000 people, and with combined annual power supply sales exceeding three billion Euros. www.epsma.org
New EPSMA Guide Helps Engineers with Thermal Measurement Issues
The thermal performance of board-mounted DC/DC converters is increasingly critical in many applications as voltages fall and current levels rise. However, measuring the thermal performance of an on-board converter can create many problems, as it depends largely on how the converter is actually used in the application. The EPSMA has produced a guide to help engineers understand the complexities of this issue and promote common understanding across the industry.
The guide starts by examining the different methods of thermal measurement for board-mounted DC/DC converters. It goes on to examine the thermal testing procedures for these products, covering the four main application scenarios: heat dissipation through the pins, use of additional heatsinks, thermal coupling to a chassis, and rack-mounting. In each case, the test set-up is examined, the measurement parameters listed, and potential issues discussed.
The guide is available free of charge at www.epsma.org. Bernhard Erdl, Chairman of the EPSMA, commented: “Thermal problems can be a major factor behind any lack of reliability of board-mounted DC/DC converters in the field. This guide should prove a valuable resource to engineers designing in this area. Thanks are due to our Technical Committee, which has invested considerable time and effort in producing this valuable document”.
New Safety Guidelines Available from EPSMA
Power supply design engineers can now access new guidelines designed to help them in their continuous battle to keep up to date with regard to the latest safety standards and certifications.
Three new guides have been recently published by the European Power Supply Manufacturers Association (EPSMA). These guides cover safety approvals of DIN-rail power supplies, safety requirements for AC/DC power supplies used in hazardous locations, and safety approvals for AC/DC products used in railway applications.
The three guides provide an overview of the design issues, definitions and useable standards that are appropriate in each case. They are designed to provide engineers with a common understanding of which safety rules and certifications should be used, depending on the final application of the standard. Furthermore, they also give a general interpretation of how different standards requirements for power supplies are realised in practice.
EPSMA member companies receive these guidelines as part of their membership. Any other companies interested in obtaining them should contact the EPSMA at www.epmsa.org.
European Power Supply Community Concern over IPC-9592 “Guide”
London, UK – 5th June 2007 – The European Power Supplies Manufacturers Association (EPSMA) has written an open letter to IPC to express its grave concerns over the IPC’s draft document IPC9592 ‘Performance Parameters for Power Conversion Devices.’ The EPSMA has cast doubt on the approach taken in the IPC9592 document, which has been drafted without consultation with the main power supply industry players worldwide.
Lars Thorsell, who chairs the EPSMA’s Technical Committee, commented: “A guideline of this type is useful but the document should look very different. At the moment it feels like a standard. The documentation required by IPC9592 is excessive, and makes it impossible to protect suppliers’ confidential information. Furthermore the extensive testing specified would significantly increase cost and time-to-market, which runs completely counter to market demands.“
In its letter to IPC, the EPSMA highlighted a number of concerns.The IPC draft is considered too broad, attempting to address too many products and applications. In addition, the document is overly prescriptive in its attempts to secure quality and does not leverage existing standards from JEDEC, IEC, IEEE and ISO.
Bernhard Erdl, Chairman of the EPSMA added: “The EPSMA and the PSMA have already supported the High Density Packaging User Group (HDPUG) which represents a large number of companies from the communication and system integrator industries. It has done a lot of work in producing guidelines for board-mounted power supplies (BMPS) over the last two years, working closely with the user community. This work has resulted in a comprehensive document of nearly 150 pages, aimed at a mature and bilateral understanding between users and manufacturers of such products. The BMPS Applications Guidelines was published and released by HDPUG in late March this year.”
The EPSMA would again be happy to share its expertise with IPC, as it did previously with its collaborative work with HDPUG. It proposes to work closely with IPC to develop a document with collective input from both users and manufacturers.
HDP USER GROUP LAUNCHES APPLICATION GUIDELINES FOR BOARD MOUNTED POWER SUPPLIES
Scottsdale, Arizona March 28, 2007 - The High Density Packaging (HDP) User Group announces the launch of the industry’s first Board Mounted Power Supply (BMPS) Application Guidelines. The 148-page document is designed to support the communications and electronics manufacturing industry by promoting understanding of BMPS products. Originally started as a project within the Power Sources Manufacturers Association (PSMA) in 2002, the activity was incorporated into an HDP User Group Project in 2005. Since then major users and manufacturers of BMPS products, have worked to define the market’s requirements with respect to such products and to communicate manufacturers’ capabilities for meeting these requirements. The BMPS Application Guidelines document is the result of their efforts..
Contributors to the document include Alcatel-Lucent, Ericsson, International Rectifier, NetPower Technologies, TDK Innoveta, Siemens Networks and Tyco Electronics. The document is endorsed by users and systems integrators including Alcatel-Lucent, Ericsson, Intel Corporation, Juniper Networks, Siemens Networks, and supported by the Power Sources Manufacturers Association (PSMA), the European Power Supply Manufacturers Association (EPSMA), Artesyn Technologies (Emerson), and TI (PowerTrends).
“The introduction of the BMPS Application Guidelines will help our member companies to communicate, for example, reliability requirements and various impacts of design decisions. It will also help designers and users of board mounted power supplies to better understand and use these products,” says Marshall Andrews Executive Director of the HDP User Group.
“We’re happy to see this project, originated by the PSMA, come to a successful conclusion and we’re eager to see it being adopted by the industry,” says Bruce Miller PSMA Chairman.
The document is the first for this industry and by far the most comprehensive of its kind, covering everything from basic topologies, power architectures, and reliability to today’s most topical issues, like digital power and energy savings. The BMPS Application Guidelines document is available from the HDP User Group offices and on the HDP User Group web site http://www.hdpug.org. It is free to members of HDP User Group and to contributing BMPS manufacturers, and will be priced at 2500USD to the public. Members of EPSMA/PSMA will receive a discount.
EPSMA Identifies Leading Power Electronics Universities in Europe
The leading universities in Europe for power electronics research are ETH (Zurich), Switzerland, Aalborg, Denmark and Aachen, Germany, according to a recent piece of research by the European Power Supply Manufacturers Association (EPSMA).
The EPSMA conducted a survey of European power electronics research groups, asking them questions on a variety of topics such as the size of their research group, their facilities/equipment, sources of funding, published papers, and the scope of their work. One question asked each respondent who they considered to be the top five university research groups in Europe. The ranking obtained was:
1. ETH Zurich (Switzerland)
2. Aalborg (Denmark)
3. Aachen (Germany)
4. Delft (The Netherlands)
=5. Madrid (Spain)
=5. Nottingham (UK)
Outside Europe, a number of universities were also mentioned who were leading research in the power electronics field. These included Virginia Tech. (USA) and University of Wisconsin (USA).
A second part of the survey asked respondents for their five year vision of future trends and developments in the power electronics field. A wide range of different issues and objectives were mentioned such as:
Increasing power density/integration in power converters, which in turn will drive improved packaging and new thermal management techniques and materials.
Shift to higher switching frequencies enabled by new power switching devices, for example using silicon carbide, and new materials for magnetics and insulation.
Displacement of analog control by digital control enabling converters to provide extensive feature sets and communicate.
Dedicated design- and simulation-software (circuit simulation efficiently coupled with 3D-field simulation) will become an essential tool in power electronics system design.
In total, around 30 research groups were identified with a significant focus on power electronics. Matthew Towers of the EPSMA Secretariat commented: "The European power electronics industry wants to attract more high quality electronic engineering students into the power area. Historically this has been perceived by students as a less attractive option than, for example, digital design. However, it is now apparent that many of the key developments in the electronics industry over the next decade will be in the power sector. The EPSMA is committed to working more closely with the key university research groups in Europe to help promote power electronics as the most attractive area for new EE engineering students".
EPSMA Reorganises For Growth
The European Power Supply Manufacturers Association (EPSMA) has announced a radical shake-up of its structure and membership rules. From 1st May 2005, a much wider spectrum of power supply producers will be eligible for full membership. At the same time, a new division of the association has been created specifically for major suppliers to the industry.
The EPSMA Chairman, Bernhard Erdl, commented “We are very excited about these changes. The more relaxed membership rules will enable us to attract more US- and Asian-based power supply producers into the association. In addition, the new supplier division will provide a mechanism for us to work much more closely with our key suppliers, particularly on technical matters of common interest.”
Historically the EPSMA limited full membership to those companies that had substantial design or production activity in Europe. However, the trend to outsource production to Asia has resulted in even European-based companies moving power supply production and design out of Europe, reflecting an industry that is increasingly global in nature. The changes in Full Membership rules will allow the association to continue to serve all power supply companies that have an interest in offering good, direct support to European customers.
The EPSMA’s technical committee is involved in a wide range of technical work looking at issues such as power factor correction, CE Marking, reliability, and the WEEE and RoHS directives. Greater involvement from major suppliers to the power supply industry will help to further improve this work, which will benefit the whole power electronics industry.
EPSMA Publishes Reliability Prediction Guide
The European Power Supply Manufacturers Association (EPSMA) has announced the publication of its latest Technical Committee report titled “Guidelines to Understanding Reliability Prediction”. This report is available to download free of charge from this website.
A range of different methods are currently used to predict reliability and failure rates for power supplies. What users sometimes fail to appreciate is that these methods can give radically different results.
The EPSMA report aims to improve users’ understanding of this complex issue and it gives an extensive overview of reliability issues, definitions and prediction methods currently used in the power supply industry. It defines different methods and looks for correlations between these methods in order to make it easier to compare reliability statements from different manufacturers that may use different prediction methods and databases to predict failure rates. Furthermore the report provides a thorough aid to understanding the problems involved in reliability calculations and guides users of power supplies to ask power supply manufacturers the right questions when choosing a vendor.
The EPSMA’s technical committee is involved in a wide range of technical work looking at issues such as power factor correction, CE Marking, reliability, and the WEEE and RoHS directives.
The European Power Supply Manufacturers Association (EPSMA) is a non-profit organisation, formed in 1995 to address issues of concern to the power supply industry in Europe for the benefit of both suppliers and users. Today the association has over 25 power supply companies as members. These members come from 12 different countries, employ over 8000 people and account for over half of the European power supply market. EPSMA actively monitors and participates in the formation of technical standards through the activities of its Technical Committee (TC), and the Co-operation Agreement signed with CENELEC (The European Electrotechnical Standards Agency) in January 2002.
Cenelec and EPSMA Sign a Cooperation Agreement
CENELEC, the European Electrotechnical Standards Organization and EPSMA, the European Power Supply Manufacturers Association, signed yesterday an important cooperation agreement in Brussels.
The agreement, signed by Mr. Parlevliet, Secretary General of CENELEC, and by Mr. Erdl, Chairman of EPSMA, allows for direct cooperation and mutual contribution to each other's work. Specifically, and as stated in CENELEC Guide 14, this agreement guarantees direct input from EPSMA into the standardization work undertaken by CENELEC. EPSMA may thus advise on and state standardization priorities, may propose drafts as a contribution to the European standardization process and may deliver expert advice on legislative consequences of new standards.
Founded in 1995, EPSMA has become the "voice" of the Power Supply Industry in Europe. Today, the association has around 30 power supply companies as members representing 13 different countries and employing over 8000 people worldwide.
EPSMA not only provides a coherent source of information to all its members on legislative and standardization developments with a direct impact on the power supply industry; it also plays an active role in the field of the electrotechnical standardization. This commitment is evident from the number of EPSMA experts already directly involved in different CENELEC and IEC projects at National Committee level.
EPSMA's achievements are also visible in the different guidance documents they have published covering major issues of importance for its membership and beyond.
As Mr. Parlevliet declared during the signature ceremony, "we are now giving an official framework to our common present and future interests. EPSMA may from now on take advantage of this agreement and increase the good work achieved during the past years".
Mr. Erdl thanked CENELEC for its particular interest in further cooperating in the Power Supply Sector and predicted a very long and fruitful partnership between CENELEC and EPSMA in the interest of both organizations and of the power electronics market in general.
Epsma Withholds Awards Due To Poor Industry Performance
At a recent meeting in Munich, the European Power Supply Manufacturers Association (EPSMA) decided not to select any semiconductor or component manufacturer as its "Vendor of the Year". This unprecedented step was taken due to the poor performance of the industry during 2000 when component shortages were rife and service levels deteriorated massively.
EPSMA Chairman Bernhard Erdl commented: "It is with great regret that the EPSMA has taken the decision not to present its annual awards for 2000. The semiconductor and component industries have offered very indifferent service to the power supply industry during the past 12 months, and in some cases the performance of manufacturers has been appalling. As well as the difficulties associated with obtaining some products, many manufacturers have been renegotiating prices upwards to exploit product shortages, even when existing contracts are in place".
The EPSMA membership usually selects its award winners through a nomination and voting process, taking account of factors such as product quality and reliability, delivery performance, and technical innovation aimed at power applications. However, most EPSMA members refused to nominate any companies for 2000, indicating that it was impossible to select a supplier that deserved the award.
Recent winners of the EPSMA's annual award have included Epcos, International Rectifier, STMicroelectronics and Vishay.
11th May 2000
Is Industry Ready for EN61000-3-2?
In January 2001, new EMC regulations will affect electronic equipment up to 16A input current. The EN 61000-3-2 standard will then require additional circuitry or a redesign of the power supply in most electronic systems. The European Power Supply Manufacturers Association (EPSMA) believes that the widespread impact of this standard has not yet been fully appreciated, or widely discussed.
What is the problem?
Harmonic currents and non-unity power factor loads cause problems for utilities in areas such as waveform distortion, and current flows in neutral conductors. For larger systems, consumers and manufacturers also suffer because the real power from a fused supply reduces as the power factor deteriorates. Manufacturers also have to deal with the EMC challenge of high harmonic current flows.
What is EN 61000-3-2?
The standard sets out to control harmonic currents in the mains by requiring equipment to comply with more stringent and power-dependant criteria than the previous EN 60555-2, and with one other major difference. EN 60555-2 applied only to household equipment, whereas EN 61000-3-2 applies to ALL electrical and electronic equipment up to 16A input. The only exceptions are non-public networks, medical technology, voltages less than 220V or effective input power less than 75W. EN 61000-3-2 therefore applies to most domestic, commercial and industrial electronics.
The European power supply industry has invested significantly in the development of suitable solutions in readiness for these regulations, with both passive and active Power Factor Correction, but there are some inevitable consequences of this additional circuitry:
More components - Leads to reduced reliability
Additional converter stage - Conversion losses will offset gains from a better power factor
More components and complex design - Leads to higher cost
Power supply manufacturers already have systems and components available to meet these requirements, but is the customer ready to pay the added cost? With the IT industry already pleading for special status and exclusion from the terms of EN 61000-3-2, at least in the short term, there seems to be no great enthusiasm.
Who should pay?
Is regulation at the equipment and power supply level the most efficient or effective way to ease the load for the utilities? As the number of equipment types covered increases, the accumulated effect across the phases within a building, for example, will tend to balance out. Is adding complexity to every small piece of equipment really the best solution, or could utilities or building owners tackle the problem with less cost at a higher level of the distribution chain, aggregating individual effects?
The EN 61000-3-2 compliance date has historically proved moveable, but today is fixed as January 1st 2001, and after a transitional period (currently expected to be 4 years) will even be applied to equipment down to only 50W input power. The power supply industry is ready, but system manufacturers must either prepare their designs and their new prices now, or discuss the implications and lobby to change the regulations. Some markets and customers (e.g. telecom operators) may prefer or even require equipment to meet EN 61000-3-2, but certainly not all. Perhaps the ideal solution is to let the market decide when and where to comply with EN 61000-3-2. Equipment manufacturers could use compliance as a competitive edge in specific applications, with power utility companies offering lower cost energy for unity power factor loads.
Is industry ready for EN 61000-3-2?
28th May 1999
EPSMA Wins Fight Against Anti-Dumping Duties
The European Commission recently failed to impose anti-dumping duties on large aluminium electrolytic capacitors (LAECs) produced in the USA and Thailand. This was to the great relief of manufacturers of power supplies and other end-equipment, such as variable speed drives and televisions, which use these products. In the final meeting of the national representatives to vote on the issue, the Commission failed to secure the necessary majority support for the duties.
The European Power Supply Manufacturers Association (EPSMA) has been very active over the last 18 months in opposing these duties, which would have had the effect of penalising power supply manufacture in Europe. LAECs are key components in power supply design. Anti-dumping duties would have raised capacitor prices for European manufacturers to the benefit of power supply companies who produce outside Europe.
Further action from the Commission is anticipated to try to impose duties on LAECs which are produced in other regions of the world. The EPSMA will continue to lobby strongly against these actions in order to protect employment within the EU.
28th May 1999
STMicroelectronics and Vishay Win EPSMA Awards
At its recent annual meeting, the European Power Supply Manufacturers Association (EPSMA) presented its 1998 Quality Awards.
The semiconductor award went to STMicroelectronics for the first time, after the company had steadily improved its performance over the last three years. STMicroelectronics achieved the top position in two of the four performance categories, for delivery and commercial service.
Vishay won the passive components award, also for the first time and again after steady improvement over three years. Vishay narrowly beat last year's winner, Siemens, for the top overall ranking.
The EPSMA's Quality Award is conducted every year to raise awareness of the size and importance of the power supply industry amongst component suppliers. EPSMA members rate vendors of power supply components in terms of product quality/reliability, delivery, commercial service level and technical support.
Also at the annual meeting, the results of the EPSMA's 1997/8 University Competition were announced. The competition's aim is to stimulate interest amongst bright electronics undergraduates in the power electronics industry.
Hugo Jorquera of Supelec in France was the winner of the award for the second time. His project, entitled "Conception d'un Convertisseur Triphasé à Absorption Sinusoidale en un seul étage à un seul Interrupteur et à Isolement Galvanique" was considered by the judging panel to offer the most innovative solution to the design questions set.
28th May 1999
EPSMA Opposes Undermining of EMC Directive
The European Power Supply Manufacturer's Association (EPSMA), representing more than 75% of European power supply manufacturers, is concerned at a recent development that may undermine the whole EMC Directive.
The EPSMA has learned that the Committee responsible for drafting the EN61000-3-2 standard for harmonics on the input current is to vote on whether computer manufacturers can be allowed to work to relaxed limits for an extended period of four years.
If the vote - which closes in March - is in favour of the relaxed limits, manufacturers of larger computer systems, largely of US origin, will have successfully gained exclusion from tight limits which power supply manufacturers have been developing new products to meet in readiness for the 1st January 2001 deadline.
The EPSMA is concerned that the EMC Directive will be abused, since many diverse manufacturers may opt to class their equipment as 'Professional IT Equipment'. Given that the equipment concerned consumes more than 600W, they will significantly affect the quality of the mains supply - the main reason why the standard is being introduced.
The EPSMA regrets the distinction between "Professional IT Equipment" and other professional equipment. It results in having different limits for the input current for similar power supplies. This forces the power supply manufacturers to produce nearly identical power supplies with a different input section, thus reducing batch sizes and increasing costs.
The EPSMA will be lobbying the various committees associated with this standard across Europe to ensure that there is a "NO" vote for an extension, thus ensuring a more harmonised application of the standard.