Placing on the market, technical requirements

The information set out below is a summary of what is necessary to comply with the requirements of the R&TTE directive and licensing situation at this time.

1. Conformity to the R&TTE directive

The European Commission (EC) decided to include GPR/WPR within the scope of the Radio and Telecommunications Terminal Equipment (R&TTE) directive 1999/5/EC.

Directives are legal instruments used by the EC to regulate/ harmonise and create a more open market in the European Union (EU).

This directive is known as a new approach directive, which unlike the older type of directive allows self declaration to demonstrate conformity to the essential requirements, which are set out in article 3 of this directive.

Demonstration of compliance to this directive is a legal requirement, which then allows the manufacturer or his authorised representative to place the product on the market for sale.

This ruling applies to manufacturers both within EU or external to the EU.

There is a choice in the methods used to demonstrate compliance to the R&TTE directive 1999/5/EC, but the most commonly used are either,

  1. Application of the Harmonised standards whose reference is published in the Official Journal of the European Union (OJ) can be used to demonstrate compliance.
  2. Submitting technical documentation to a notified body, who will assess whether or not the documentation properly demonstrates that the essential requirements of the directive have been met. If compliance of the apparatus is confirmed the notified body will issue a statement confirming compliance.

The essential requirements set out in article 3 of the directive are as follows;

3.1a) Protection of the health and safety of the user and any other person, including the objectives set out in with respect to the safety requirements in the low voltage directive73/23/EEC, but with no voltage limit applying.

The harmonised standard which can be used to demonstrate conformance with the safety requirements is the CENELEC harmonised standard EN 60950 (but with no safe voltage limits). This standard can be obtained via the National Standards organisations in any of the EU member countries.

The harmonised standard which can be used to demonstrate conformance with the health and safety in respect of human exposure to electromagnetic fields (General public) is the CENELEC harmonised standard EN50371.This standard can be obtained via the National Standards organisations in any of the EU countries.

3.1b) The protection requirements with respect to electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) contained in Directive 89/336/EEC.

The harmonised standard (published in the (OJ)) which can be used to demonstrate conformance with the EMC requirements is the ETSI harmonised standard EN 301 489-32. The standard can be obtained from the secretary of the EuroGPR Association.

3.2 The radio equipment shall be constructed that it effectively uses the spectrum allocated to terrestrial/space radio communication and orbital resources so as to avoid harmful interference.

The harmonised standard which can be used to demonstrate conformance with the spectrum requirements is the ETSI harmonised standard EN 302 066-2 (published in the (OJ)). Reference to EN 302 066-1 is necessary as it contains the methods of measurement and limit values.

1.b) Declaration of conformity to the R&TTE directive

This is a legal requirement and must include the following:

  • A reference to the directive
  • An identification of the apparatus to which the declaration refers
  • The name and address of the manufacturer and where applicable the name and address of the authorised representative in the EU.
  • A dated reference to the specifications under which conformity is declared to ensure conformity of the apparatus with the provisions of this directive.
  • The date of that declaration
  • The identity and signature of the person empowered to bind the manufacturer or his authorised representative.

1.c) CE marking

The CE mark must be affixed to the apparatus or its data plate. Where this is not possible or warranted on account of the nature of the apparatus, it must be affixed to the packaging, if any, and to accompanying documents. See directive for details.

1.d) Documentation

All documentation associated with the declaration of conformance must be available for up to 10 years after production of that apparatus ceases.

2. Licencing

Although conformance to the R&TTE directive 1999/5/EC, allows the placing of a GPR/WPR product on the market for sale, it does not give authority for its use. In order to use the equipment in the majority of EU member countries a licence is required. The licence is controlled and issued by the radio administration in each of the member countries.

Unfortunately the approach is not consistent throughout the EU, and it is sometimes difficult to obtain a licence, or it may be in the form of a temporary licence, an experimental licence, but not a full licence.

This situation has been improved following the European radio administrations, Electronic Communications Committee (ECC)) agreeing and issuing a decision for GPR/WPR. The decision involved is ECC/DEC/(06)08, but unfortunately it is not legally binding on member countries. To date less than half the EU member countries have introduced this decision into their legislation.

The ultimate goal for GPR/WPR is to be included into an EC decision, which then gives it a legal basis for use and application in all member countries. In other words a harmonised approach for permission to use GPR/WPR would result in all EU countries, which in turn would overcome the majority of difficulties in obtaining a licence.

The EC committee which agrees and produces EC decisions is RSCOM (Radio spectrum committee),

 

Norman Lightfoot

May 2009

European and International technical standards for GPR

Technical standards for GPR equipment manufacturers valid under the European, USA and Canadian legislations are available to EuroGPR members for download. These standards effectively cover also most other regions of the world as many other countries accept European or USA regulations on electromagnetic emissions.

Technical standards for GPR equipment