All electrical and electronic devices can be a source of electromagnetic disruption. This is defined as any electromagnetic phenomenon that may cause a deterioration in the functioning of equipment, e.g. electromagnetic noise, an unwanted signal, or a change in the propagation environment itself. You can sometimes encounter interference between items such as your food mixer and televisions or radios.
The Directive on electromagnetic compatibility set out rules for electrical devices and installations in order to keep this disruption to a minimum. This means that the device itself cannot cause any impermissible magnetic interference, but also that the device must be able to function effectively in its electromagnetic environment.
Almost all electrical or electronic devices and equipment which contain electrical and/or electronic components fall under the EMC Directive.
Some devices do not fall under the scope of this legislation:
- Radio and telecommunication devices;
- Radio devices that are used by radio amateurs;
- Aeronautical products, parts and equipment;
- Evaluation models that are intended for professional use and exclusively in facilities for R&D and are used for such purposes;
- Devices that cannot generate disruption, such as cables, batteries or torches (without electrical circuits).
- The general safety requirements for electrical devices are set out in the Code of Economic Law, Book IX with on the safety of products and services. The requirements of this law are supplemented and specified for specific requirements for electromagnetic compatibility in the Royal Decree of 1 December 2016 on electromagnetic compatibility.
This Royal Decree is the transposition of European Directive 2014/30/EU into Belgian law.
Obligations for manufacturers
Before placing a product on the market, the manufacturer, or the initial importer into the European Union, must meet the following criteria:
- The product may only be supplied to the market if it meets the essential requirements;
- A technical file must be created in which the manufacturer demonstrates that the product meets these requirements;
- Manufacturers must ensure that they apply procedures for continuously guaranteeing the conformity of their series products;
- Every product must be identifiable by means of a type, batch or serial number;
- The name, brand and postal address at which the manufacturer can be reached must be indicated on each productor, if this is impossible, on the packaging;
- The device must be accompanied by instructions and information on use in a language easily understood by consumers and other end-users, in other words in the language of the region where the product is to be sold;
- A declaration of conformity must be drawn up and signed and the product must bear the CE marking.
More detailed information on the conformity assessment procedure that applies can be found in the Royal Decree of 1 December 2016 on electromagnetic compatibility.