International Standards and Conformity Assessment for all electrical, electronic and related technologies

IEC e-tech – March 2014

IEC e-tech: March 2014



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Editor in Chief:

Gabriela Ehrlich


Managing Editor e-tech :

Claire Marchand



Janice Blondeau

Aliyah Esmail

Morand Fachot

Zoé Smart


Smarter, safer transportation for all


This issue of e-tech focuses on transportation, from the role of the IEC in the automotive industry to new modes of urban transportation and maglev (magnetic levitation) high-speed trains. Smart transport and traffic management will also be covered. And last but not least, electric light and heavy-duty industrial vehicles.


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Maglev – a technology for the future?


Railways have constantly improved since they were first introduced. However, they still rely on basically the same principle: train wheels running on steel tracks and causing friction. A technology that sees trains "floating" over a track using magnets and superconductivity may radically change train transport in the future.

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Can smart traffic and cars save lives?


Each year, an estimated 1,3 million people die in road traffic accidents; a further 20-50 million are injured. Technologies that include new safety devices, connected and autonomous vehicles and intelligent transportation systems with their associated infrastructure and systems are expected to improve this poor record.


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Easier, safer, leaner and cleaner


Most major automobile manufacturers now offer a variety of electric vehicles. However, this often obscures the fact that the electrical and electronic content in vehicles powered by internal combustion engines has been growing steadily over the years. This makes for safer, more fuel-efficient and comfortable driving.


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EV wireless charging system: a standardization challenge


Since 2011 Dimitrios Ladas, IEC 2013 Young Professional Leader, has been a member the IEC TC 69: Electric road vehicles and electric industrial trucks, project team which develops the Standard for Wireless Power Transfer for EV charging. In this article he gives insights into the standardization challenges that developers of the EV (Electric Vehicle) wireless charging system face


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Heavy lifting


Electric vehicles are not limited to personal and urban transport alone, but extend more and more to other sectors. Commercial and industrial EVs make up 60% of the value of the overall EV market. IEC Standards are essential for the further development and introduction of this class of EVs and for the entire EV sector.


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Behind the scenes at the Sochi Olympics


Invisible but essential for the success of the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics, IEC work underpinned a host of technologies which helped in the smooth running of the Games. From access control and transportation for visitors, to timers and information systems for officials and athletes; cameras, microphones, lighting for announcers and the media, as well as the kilometres of cables and fibre optics in electrical and communication installations, IEC TC/SCs prepare Standards for components and systems used throughout the Games venues and in the Sochi region.


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Personal systems herald "smart mobility"


Automated or "self-driving" personal transport systems are no longer the preserve of science fiction. They are now up and running at several locations around the world. IEC standardization work will prove instrumental in the expansion of systems that use innovative pod-type vehicles as well as for two- and three wheeled "personal transporters".


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On the right track


Rail transport is a well-established and pivotal mode of transportation both for passengers and freight and a key component of the global economy. It has enabled many remote areas to be developed and, far from sliding into obsolescence, it is enjoying major expansion throughout the world. Standardization work by IEC TC 9 is central to the growth of the rail sector.


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Getting to know Kerry McManama


e-tech talks to Kerry McManama, the new Executive Secretary and Chief Operating Officer of IECEE (IEC System of Conformity Assessment Schemes for Electrotechnical Equipment and Components) to find out how he arrived at this point and the challenges he sees in his new role.


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Knowledge supports safety in Ex areas


IECEx Executive Secretary Chris Agius attended the Danish Forum in November 2013. The Forum is a network of about 350 participants who are registered on a mailing list and are invited to each event. Its purpose is to give participants a place to exchange experiences and knowledge and urge them to give a presentation on what they do in their company to comply with Ex related regulations in Europe.


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Safer cars, smarter drives


To ensure that the technologies being developed for vehicles around the world are reliable, IECQ created a programme that gives the automotive industry a standardized way of testing the components in those technologies.


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Smart energy for Africa


The first international Africa Smart Grid Forum 2014 will take place in Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire, from14 to 15 May 2014. Entitled The Smart Grids, a solution for emerging Africa, the Forum will bring together renowned Smart Grid experts from around the world who will be able to share their experience and expertise with all participants.


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Reaching out


With the introduction of social media to the communications landscape the way organizations interact with their stakeholders has changed irrevocably. The IEC has risen to the challenge with aplomb.


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Formula E approaches the starting grid


The inaugural season of the world's first fully-electric racing series, Formula E, will run from September 2014 to June 2015. For the first season, 10 teams with two drivers each will compete in 10 cities across the world.


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Nominations and extensions


SMB (Standardization Management Board) has approved the nomination of Giovanni Pirovano as Chairman of IEC TC 11: Overhead lines for the period 1 November 2013 to 31 October 2019. Several extensions of terms of office were also approved in recent months.


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Nanotechnology: a key to solar energy and energy storage


Nanotechnology will bring significant benefits to the energy sector, especially to energy storage and solar energy, a new study from the IEC and the Fraunhofer Institute for Systems and Innovation Research ISI has found. Improved materials efficiency and reduced manufacturing costs are just two of the real economic benefits that nanotechnology already brings these fields and that’s only the beginning.


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IEC material declaration Standard goes global


Every electrotechnical product has an environmental impact over its entire life cycle, from raw material acquisition, to the manufacture, distribution, use, maintenance, re-use and end of life of its components, and all of this across borders. An IEC International Standard for the material declaration for products of and for the electrotechnical industry, and its associated database have been adopted by European, Japanese and US industries.


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