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European Commission announces motor and power converter efficiency directive regulation

Publication date: 
December 2018
Rob Boteler, Confluence Energy LLC
Type of media: 

On October 22, the European Commission submitted its plan to expand motor and power converter efficiency regulations. As part of the EcoDesign directive, the Commission has been working on expanded motor and drive regulations for several years. The European Union directive will address both motors and variable frequency drives (VFDs) from .75 to 1,000 kW (1 to 1340 hp).

Efficiency directives in Europe are drafted by the Commission with individual countries responsible for enforcement. Unlike the USA where the regulation is promulgated and enforced at the federal level through the Department of Energy, each country within the EU has enforcement responsibility. Though some complain that the DOE rule making process is very lengthy and stressful, it does provide all interested parties with an opportunity to be heard. The EU Commission also has a process for the development of regulations, and many would argue that the manufacturers are somewhat less of an integral part of the EU process.  

The directive that will cover the new EU motor and power converter regulations is referred to as the “annex EN.” It has yet to receive its reference number. EC640/209, the current directive, will be replaced.