C-Tick & RCM Testing
C-Tick Testing, RCM Certification, Regulatory Compliance Mark, EMC Compliance Testing for Australia
On March 1st 2016 Australia introduced a new single compliance mark for Electrical Safety and EMC approvals. The new single compliance mark is called the Regulatory Compliance Mark, or RCM mark. It replaces the C-Tick, A-Tick and Unique Electrical Safety Approval Number, making it easier for purchasers and installers to identify if a device is fully compliant with Australian electrical safety, Telecommunications and EMC regulations.
Compliance with the Australian EMC regulations is mandatory and they apply to almost all electronic products supplied to the Australian market. Application of the RCM mark signifies compliance with appropriate Australian EMC standard. EMC Compliance requirements are currently limited to mains terminal disturbance voltage measurements (RF emissions travelling along the AC power lines), telecommunications terminal disturbance voltage measurements (RF emissions travelling along the telecommunication lines) and radiated RF emission measurements (RF emissions emanating from the device through the air).
The most commonly referenced EMC standards for Australian RCM compliance are detailed as follows:
- AS/NZS CISPR 11 : EMC requirements for ISM Equipment
- AS/NZS CISPR 12 : EMC requirements for Spark Ignition Engines
- AS/NZS CISPR 14.1 : EMC requirements for Appliances & Power Tools
- AS/NZS CISPR 15 : EMC requirements for Lighting Equipment
- AS/NZS CISPR 32 : Electromagnetic compatibility of multimedia equipment – Emission requirements
- AS/NZS 61000-6-3 : Generic EMC requirements for Residential, Commercial and Light Industrial Environments
- AS/NZS 61000-6-4 : Generic EMC requirements for Heavy Industrial Environments
Regulatory Compliance Mark – RCM Testing
For more information on EMC compliance testing services available in Australia, contact us on (03) 9763 3079. We also provide other services including RF shielding, vibration and shock testing, EMF shielding, interference investigation, environmental testing and CE testing.
As one of Australia’s most prominent testing companies, Compliance Engineering has experience in compliance testing of a wide range of products. Our testing facilities utilise advanced test equipment and procedures to ensure efficient tests and accurate results every time.
Supplying a product to the Australian market
The ACMA regulate the compliance of electronic products with relation to EMC, telecommunications, radiocommunications and EMR. Suppliers of electronic products bound for the Australian market are required by law to ensure they comply with these mandatory requirements prior to release.
Following are 5 steps to ensure you are in compliance with Australia RCM requirements:
Step 1: Check the rules to follow
As a supplier, you must know and follow the ACMA rules for your product.It is important you read the ACMA rules carefully as your product might not fit neatly into one group.
Step 2: Show that your product complies
You must show your product complies with the ACMA rules.Depending on your product, you can show it complies through testing or certain documents.
What products need testing?
Mostproducts need testing to show they comply.
The ACMA will assess the risk of supplying products that do not comply with their rules.
Your labelling notice sets out the risk level for your product.
Generally it is true that for a:
- low or medium-risk product (levels 1 and 2), you can use a testing body
- high-risk product (level 3), you must use an accredited testing body
High risk equipment is identified in AS/NZS CISPR 11 (Group 2 equipment)
Equipment in which radio-frequency energy is intentionally generated and used in the form of electromagnetic radiation, inductive and/or capacitive coupling, for the treatment of material or inspection/analysis purposes.
Compliance Engineering can test your product and verify that it complies with the applicable standard/s detailed in the ACMA rules.
The ACMA technical requirements for telecommunications customer equipment and customer cabling are listed on the Telecommunications standards page.
The ACMA technical requirements for radiocommunications devices are listed on the Radiocommunications standards page.
Electromagnetic Compatibility (EMC)
The ACMA recognition of conformity assessment bodies for the purposes of EMC under the APECTEL MRA only extends to bodies testing to EMC standards that are directly relevant to telecommunications equipment and appear in the list of ACMA-mandated EMC standards.
Currently the relevant recognised standards are those mandated standards listed at Serial 3, Serial 7 and Serial 54 on Part 2 of the EMC standards page.
Electromagnetic Energy (EME)
TheACMA technical requirements for EME for telecommunications equipment as specified in the APECTEL MRA include certain mobile and portable radiocommunications transmitters supplied with an integral antenna. These devices must operate on a frequency between 100 kHz and 300 GHz.
Equipment must comply with the Radiocommunications (Electromagnetic Radiation – Human Exposure) Standard 2014 (the Human Exposure Standard). Testing must be conducted in accordance with the methodologies prescribed in the Human Exposure Standard and the limits defined by the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA) in the Radiation Protection Standard for Maximum Exposure Levels to Radiofrequency Fields – 3kHz to 300 GHz (2002) (the ARPANSA Standard).
Step 3: Sign and keep records
Compliance records are documents that show your product complies with the ACMA rules.
The ACMA may ask for your records as part of an audit or investigation.
Records you need
The records you need depend on your product. They might include a:
- declaration of conformity
- test report
- description of your product
- product guide for customers
- statement about a product change
If you use an agent, you need an agency agreement.
How to keep records
Generally, your records:
- must be in English
- may be in electronic form
- may be a copy of the original record
You must keep your records for the number of years, after you stop supplying your product in Australia.
They must be available to the ACMA on request.
Declaration of conformity
You must not supply your product without signing a declaration of conformity (DoC).
- You may create your own format for the DoC, but it must include all of the information in the ACMA Declaration of Conformity (Form C02).
Your DoC should say that your product complies with the ACMA standard.
You may only use a DoC that an overseas manufacturer has signed if it:
- includes all the information in the ACMA DoC form
- says that your product complies with the ACMA rules
Whoever signs the DoC must:
- see the evidence that your product complies with the ACMA rules
- agree that your records show that your product complies with the ACMA rules
A test report must say:
- what your product is (type, model and batch number)
- who the tester is
- how the tester tested your product
- what the results mean
- what standards your product complies with
A test report might also include rules for how an installer must install your product.
An agency agreement is a written, signed agreement between a supplier and an agent.
An agreement gives the agent permission to act on behalf of the supplier.
You can create your own agreement form.
Your agency agreement must clearly say who is responsible for following the ACMA rules, including:
- checking the rules to follow
- testing the product
- signing and keeping records (such as a declaration of conformity)
- labelling the product
- updating the records when the product changes
It is recommended you seek independent legal advice before signing an agreement. You should fully understand what you are agreeing to.
Be aware: even when you use an agent, you are generally still responsible for following the ACMA rules.
Step 4: Register as a responsible supplier
Registering as a responsible supplier on the national database ensures the ACMA can identify and contact you if required.
How to register as a supplier
Register online at the national database. There is a user guide to help you under ‘Quick Links’.
Select ‘ACMA only’ if your product does not have to comply with the equipment safety rules under the Electrical Equipment Safety System.
If your product has to comply with equipment safety rules, you must also register each product.
When registering, give:
- an address in Australia
- the name and contact details of a representative
How to register as an agent
Register online at the national database.
Select ‘ACMA only’ if your supplier’s product does not have to comply with the equipment safety rules under the Electrical Equipment Safety System (EESS).
If your supplier’s product has to comply with equipment safety rules:
- register each product
- register as an authorised representative
- have your supplier register
- make sure your supplier nominates you as their representative
You might have to pay registration fees when you register on the national database.
If your product only has to comply with the ACMA rules, it is free to register.
If your product has to comply with the equipment safety rules under the Electrical Equipment Safety System (EESS), there are fees.
Send your questions about registering under the EESS to firstname.lastname@example.org or contact via EESS enquiries: 1300 362 128.
Step 5. Labelling your product
A compliance label shows that your product complies with the ACMA rules. It has the Regulatory Compliance Mark (RCM) symbol.
After completing this final step, you can supply your product to the Australian market.
When to apply your label
Check your product’s labelling notice for whether it needs a label.
Generally all products need a label to show they comply with the ACMA requirements.
There is an exemption for certain cabling products.
You cannot automatically supply a product with an overseas compliancemark (for example, the CE or FCC mark).
Only apply a label once you have completed steps 1 to 4 above.
Check your product’s labelling notice for our physical rules.
Generally they cover:
Scale and visibility
- The label must be legible and visible to the unaided eye.
- The label may be in any colour, as long as it is visible. This might be through contrast with the background colour or marking in relief (for example, moulding or engraving).
- The Regulatory Compliance Mark (RCM) must be no smaller than 3 millimetres in height.
- The label should be a permanent feature on your product.
- You must apply the label to a surface of your product that is easily accessible.
- You can apply the label by any suitable means (for example, printing, painting, moulding, etching or engraving).
- The label should be durable, meaning not likely to fall off, be washed off or fade.
If a product has a built-in display, you may show it electronically ratherthan on the surface of your product. (Displays that connect to the product, but are external, are notbuilt-in.)
Your product instructions for the consumer must explain how they can view the electronic label. For example:
- during the product’s power up sequence
- under the product’s system information page
- under the product’s help menu
If it is not practical to apply a label to the surface of your product (and you do not show it using a built-in electronic display), apply the label to both the:
- surface of your product packaging
- product documents (such as instructions or warranties)for the consumer
A label on the surface of your product packaging must:
- be clearly visible
- take up an area that is greater than 1% of that surface (this is not the case for products under the Telecommunications (Labelling Notice for Customer Equipment and Customer Cabling) Instrument 2015)
If you do not apply a label to the surface of your product, you must keep records that say:
- why you did not apply the label to the surface
- where you applied the label instead
This does not count if you label electronically.
Download the Regulatory Compliance Mark
The Regulatory Compliance Mark (RCM) shows that a product is safe to supply to the Australian market.
Electrical Equipment Safety System
The Electrical Equipment Safety System (EESS) also uses the Regulatory Compliance Mark.EESS is managed by participating jurisdictions of the EESS.
Questions about registration, such as registration fees (supplier or product), need to be sent to the EESS website.You can also contact EESS enquiries on 1300 362 128 or via email: email@example.com