The new ErP (Energy Related Products) is coming on the 1st of January 2013, are your fans compliant? Axair Fans UK Limited Marketing Manager Fabien Carbonell explains.
The European Union has defined the 20-20-20 target, with the aim to reduce energy consumption and carbon emissions by 20% and increase the share of renewable energies by 20%, by 2020. The new ErP Directive implements requirements for fans driven by motors with an electric input power between 125W and 500kW.
In order to accurately define fan compliancy to the new regulation, a Fan Motor Efficiency Grade (FMEG) is given to all types of fans. The FMEG levels are already set by the Directive and vary between types of fans (axial, centrifugal backward or forward curved, with or without housing, cross flow, etc). Each fan must be measured following an equation taking into account the airflow and pressure at peak efficiency and the power consumption, and an overall efficiency grade “N” is given to the fan. The grade is then compared to the FMEG level, deciding if the fan is compliant or not. The compliancy to the energy efficiency target will be the condition for the fan CE marking allowing operation within the EU.
There are 2 sets of efficiency targets, the first set for 1st January 2013, followed by a stricter stage set for the 1st of January 2015. All fans will have to comply, not only fans as complete assemblies for commercial & domestic applications, but also fans as OEM parts. Non-compliant fans may be used only as spares or replacement of existing equipment or for export outside the EU. The race for compliancy has now started for all fan manufacturers, usually in 2 steps, first carrying extensive testing to find out where the current range is performing, the second one to work towards finding alternatives to non-compliant products.
As a distributor, Axair Fans role is just as crucial as the manufacturers. Axair do not have to test fans but it is important to understand the Directive just as much as the manufacturers, and need to find alternatives to non-compliant products. Distributors can also bring valuable feed-back to principal suppliers, especially evaluating which products are exempt because of their application.
Axair is also member of the Fan Manufacturers Association who provides important feedback from the industry and has set up a Technical Group. This group follows up on the work of manufacturers, including Ecofit, Rosenberg, Sodeca and SEAT. Also being a fan manufacturer, Axair have had to look carefully at the new directive, but a big part of Axair’s work is with ATEX certified or corrosion resistant fans, both types being exempt of the ErP.
As all directives, there are a number of exemptions, but finding the way can be a minefield:
Axair Fans can now offer a number of alternatives to Non ErP products, including AC fans that have been redesigned and “tuned” in order to comply to both ErP 2013 & 2015, but also by offering EC fans (Electronically Commutated). Axair offers the range from the Rosenberg Group, Ecofit and Rosenberg; both ranges have extended considerably since the ErP has been confirmed, and customers now have the opportunity to integrate ErP compliant fans, but also use a much more energy efficient technology with infinite control possibilities. Spanish manufacturer Sodeca also offers a selection of EC products for commercial applications.