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June 2021: IEC in the news

Many publications discussed the work of the IEC in June 2020. Topics covered cyber security, smart manufacturing, renewable energy and motors. As the summer approaches, several consumer publications looked into the water resistance of various devices including phones, e-readers and watches.

Renewable energy

New technologies in solar energy are explored in several articles this past month. The MIT Technology Review provides an update on industry efforts to launch solar panels using perovskite. It mentions the IEC 61215 series of standards which define the test methods for outdoor silicon cells. An article in PV Magazine provides an overview about the growing market for floating PV, especially in Asia, and the need for standards.

Two articles, in Africa Outlook Magazine and Mercom India, discuss the requirements to conform to IEC Standards when deploying solar PV modules. An article in Urban Transport Magazine provides an overview of the available standards to ensure the basic safety for hydrogen fuel cells that could be used in passenger trains.

Motor efficiency

Several articles discuss motor efficiency classifications as defined by IEC 60034-30-1. In Modern Pumping Today, an article explains the classification system and argues that the adoption of high-efficiency motors will be necessary to reduce energy consumption and achieve the global carbon reduction targets set in the Paris agreement. Similarly, an article in Times of India calls for the adoption of more efficient motors in order for the country to become more sustainable.

An article in Empowering Pumps provides an overview of the different motor technologies available for pump installations. It notes that the IEC is working on the next edition of motor classifications which will introduce the Ultra Premium Efficiency class.

Cyber security

Cyber security continues to generate much media interest. While primarily focused on the protection of operational technology as it merges with IT, several articles examined industry specific requirements, information security as well as security requirements for edge computing and software systems.

Industrial automation and control systems

A number of articles explore how to protect industrial control systems with a focus on the IEC 62443 series of standards. Articles are published in Cybersecurity Ventures, Design News, Factoria del Futuro and Control Engineering. A detailed article in ISS Source provides a detailed overview of IEC 62443, the different parts of the series of standards and the risk based approach adopted.

Building automation

An article in Industrial Cybersecurity Pulse examines cyber security for buildings. According to the article, IEC 62443 can be used to specify building automation cybersecurity requirements.

Power equipment

In National Cybersecurity News, an article explains why power management should be included in cyber security protection plans. It highlights IEC 62443 as a resource available to address security vulnerabilities.

Information security

Two articles, in ICT Business and IT Chronicles, discuss the importance of information security. They mention ISO/IEC 27001 and its best practice approach for securing data and information.

Edge computing and software security

Several articles discuss how to ensure security for edge computing. In Hindustan Time, an article debunks cyber security misconceptions around edge computing. A blog post in APC by Schneider Electric discusses cyber security best practices for edge computing given the increased risk posed by more devices operating at the edge of the network. An article in Automation World details how to protect industrial control system firewalls.

In EE Times, an article addresses the security of software supply chains. It mentions ISO/IEC 5055 and its requirements to ensure software reliability, security and performance efficiency.


Two articles discuss the adoption of cyber security policy by regulations. In IT Daily, an article calls for strong cooperation between regulatory authorities and manufacturers to ensure the safety and security of connected devices in an industrial environment. According to an article in CBIA, the state of Connecticut in the US has adopted cyber security legislation based on standards published by, among others, the IEC.

Industry 4.0

Several articles discuss technologies that enable Industry 4.0, industrial automation, IIoT and time sensitive networks. Two articles, in Filiere-3e and Inter Empresas, mention IEC 61499 and the possibility it offers for industrial automation and IT/OT convergence. An article in Automation details the lack of consensus on the definition of Industry 4.0. However, it notes that work is underway in IEC TC 65 and its joint working group with ISO.

An article in Control Global provides an update on the software and protocols needed for implementing IIoT. It mentions the recently published IEC TS 60079-47 which defines two-wire IS Ethernet for use in hazardous areas.

Three articles discuss the upcoming publication of IEC/IEEE 60802 on time sensitive networks for industrial automation. Enterprise IoT Insights examines TSN from the perspective of 5G and the need to align with IEC/IEEE 60802. In Control Design, an article highlights the benefits of harmonization of TSN made possible with IEC/IEEE 60802. Finally, an article in Elektronik Praxis discusses TSN network convergence between manufacturers.

New technologies

The work of the IEC and ISO Joint Technical Committee on ICT (ISO/IEC JTC 1) in artificial intelligence and cloud computing is explained in two articles. The first article, in Regulatory Focus and written by the Chair of ISO/IEC JTC 1/SC 42, provides an overview of the standardization work in AI, big data and analytics. Silicon Luxembourg examines the standards for cloud computing.

An article in Vibra calls for standards for AI used in security cameras. While work is underway in the IEC, it has not yet been completed.

Ensuring products are water proof

A number of articles discuss how well electronic products resist against water, with some making specific reference to IEC 60529 and its IP ratings. Products reviewed include rugged mobile phones, watches, batteries used in electric vehicles, e-readers and motors. An article in Mac Daily reviews the IP rating of the Apple iPhone and the recovery of one phone after three days spent underwater.

Medical devices

An uplifting story in Better India discusses the work of a start-up in Hyderabad that is developing an affordable 3D-printed bionic arm. It is currently in the process of certification in Europe and the United States which includes the need to comply with the IEC 60601 series of standards.

An article in Gov Info Security examines cyber security for medical devices in the United States.


An article in Resource Recycling discusses the growing problem of e-waste and efforts in the IEC to develop a global e-waste standard.

A history of plugs

An article in IEEE Spectrum explains the history of why there are so many different plugs and sockets around the world. According to the article, the IEC recognizes 15 different plug and socket types.


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