CAB report to IEC Council

Dr Hiromichi Fujisawa, IEC Vice-President and Chairman of CAB (Conformity Assessment Board) reported to the IEC Council.

By Gabriela Ehrlich

Fujisawa gave an update on CAB activities in the 12 months since the Oslo GM (General Meeting). He talked about the creation of IECRE, the new IEC CA (Conformity Assessment) System for renewable energies, presented the work of some of the CAB working groups and of the WT CAC (Wind Turbine Certification Advisory Committee). Furthermore Fujisawa provided insights into the process that is currently being undertaken to harmonize the basic rules of the three CA Systems, IECEE, IECEx and IECQ.

Hiromichi Fujisawa, IEC Vice-President and Chairman of CAB at the 2013 General Meeting in Delhi, India

Masterplan implementation

To help with the implementation of activities outlined in the IEC 2011 Masterplan that are under its direct responsibility, CAB has tasked several of its working groups with different aspects of this work.

For example, CAB WG 10: Policy and Strategy has identified the many policies and related decisions that have been taken over the years and compiled a single document with the aim of eliminating redundancies. A final version is planned to be presented in the June 2014 CAB meeting. This should allow the CAB to improve the overall efficiency of its policy and decision making process. Additionally, WG 10 is working on the 2011 Masterplan implementation plan specific to the CAB arena.

CAB WG 11: Systems Issues is tasked with investigating the rules and operating structures of the CA Systems, while CAB WG 12: Energy Efficiency is identifying options for the development of a guide for a global energy efficiency CA framework for developing countries. The aim is to prevent further proliferation of energy efficiency labels. CAB WG 13: Product Piracy and Counterfeit Parts will be meeting in November to discuss the scope of next activities in view of the importance of this topic for industry.


CAB is currently undertaking a harmonization of the Basic Rules of the IEC CA (Conformity Assessment) Systems, which define the management and governing structure of each CA System. The aim is to identify those Rules that are consistent across the three CA Systems while accounting for fundamental differences.

Assessing renewable energy

At the CAB June meeting the decision was taken to establish a 4th CA System to manage new CA schemes in the renewable energy sector. To be known as IECRE, for Renewable Energies, it will focus on CA schemes for wind energy, marine energy and solar photovoltaic energy and, eventually, other technologies. In that context, IECRE will cooperate closely with TC 88: Wind turbines, TC 114: Marine energy and TC 82: Solar photovoltaic energy systems. In the future this new CA System will likely also include Solar thermal electric plants under TC 117, and fuel cell technologies which are covered by TC 105.

A defining characteristic of this new CA System will be that it will embody both systems approach and lifecycle approach conformity assessment.

An IECRE Stakeholders Forum was held just before the IEC GM in Delhi and another in the middle of November in Paris. The group agreed on a roadmap for establishing the Basic Rules of the CA System, which are an essential step before the new CA System itself can be established. The objective is to submit a proposal to the CAB for approval in June 2014 and to hold the first IECRE management committee meeting in September 2014 (subject to CAB approval).

Affiliate Countries involvement

The ACAS (Affiliate Conformity Assessment Status) will offer developing countries who participate in the IEC Affiliate Country Programme new benefits in all of the existing and future IEC CA Systems. The objective of ACAS is to assist countries who have signed the ACAS pledge to learn more about the IEC CA activities and services in order that they can benefit from their use. Affiliate countries with ACAS will benefit from regional awareness events, webinars and learning modules. They will have access to a resource database, documents and guides to increase their understanding of conformity assessment, and will be able to participate in the management activities of the IEC CA Systems as observers with commenting rights when appropriate. The learning modules will be available on the IEC website and in CD-ROM form. Some of these activities are already in place, others, for example the learning modules will be developed over the coming weeks.

Changing of the guard

This and next year many of the “oldtimers” will be leaving and new leaders will take up their work. Pierre de Ruvo IECEE Executive Secretary and COO is handing the baton to Kerry McManama after 14 years at the helm of IECEE (see also e-tech articles July 2013).

Dave Smith is stepping down as IECQ Chairman on 31 December 2013, having occupied that function for almost 10 years (see also e-tech interview), leaving his office to Marie-Elisabeth d’Ornano from France, who is starting her term on 1 January 2014. The CAB also appointed a new Vice Chairman of IECQ , Dr Young-Kwon Chang from Korea, who will start his mandate on 1 January 2014.

Last but not least, the CAB has appointed Dr Thorsten Arnhold from Germany as its new Chairman, based on his nomination by IECEx. Arnhold will start his job on 1 January 2014.

DSC_1055 Hiromichi Fujisawa, IEC Vice-President and Chairman of CAB at the 2013 General Meeting in Delhi, India
Complementary CAB is currently undertaking a harmonization of the Basic Rules of the three IEC CA Systems
renewables A fourth CA System, IECRE, is being established to manage new CA schemes in the renewable energy sector