ENERGY STAR has created a completely new system of requirements and procedures for qualifying energy-efficient products. Navigating the new routes to qualification can be a challenge, given the multiplicity of newly defined requirements for testing, certification and verification. What are Recognized Laboratories, Certification Bodies and Accreditation Bodies? What roles do they play in the process? Can manufacturers still perform their own product testing for qualification? This article will chart the landscape and describe how to choose the fastest and most economical route through EPA’s Enhanced Testing and Verification Program.
The “Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval” was launched in 1909 by Good Housekeeping Magazine. The publication, a first in consumer protection (in the early Spring of social advocacy) guaranteed satisfactory use of products that bore their Seal. The guarantee states that “if any product that bears our Seal or is advertised in this issue (with certain exceptions) proves to be defective within two years from the date it was first sold to a consumer by an authorized retailer, we, Good Housekeeping, will replace the product or refund the purchase price.”
What does “certification” mean to you? What is the value of becoming “certified?”
The answer to this question has to include an answer to another question, “what is being certified?” In the electrostatic control arena, the world’s Premiere organization for education and standards development is the ESD Association. The ESD Association has established several types of certification. ESDA offers facility certification programs to ANSI/ESD S20.20 through the various certification bodies that are also performing audits and certification reviews to ISO 9001. They also offer personal certification programs, namely the Program Manager and Device Design Certifications. These three prestigious titles carry a wealth of meaning behind them in terms of knowledge, competence, and problem-solving ability. In addition to the certifications offered by the ESD Association, ESDA is also affiliated with The International Association for Radio, Telecommunications and Electromagnetics (iNARTE), which offers certification for ESD Engineers and Technicians. The ESD Association, through this affiliation with iNARTE, provides a large amount of the training for person’s seeking iNARTE certification.