The IEC General Meeting (GM), which will take place from 21 to 25 October in Shanghai, is already exceeding all expectations. Around 4000 delegates have registered to attend the numerous workshops and technical committee (TC) gatherings that will be organized.
An important event will be the announcement, on October 22, concerning a key IEC publication, IEC 62257-9-5. The technical specification (TS), which evaluates stand alone renewable energy products for rural electrification, and is published by IEC TC 82, will be directly available in the Chinese language. This is a crucial milestone both for the IEC and the Chinese National Committee (NC), as it is the first time that any IEC International Standard or TS is directly published in Chinese.
“The Chinese NC worked very hard on this matter. There was an important exchange of dialogue with the IEC about copyright and related issues. The NC also oversaw the translation work. The plan in future years is to translate an increasing number of IEC TC 82 Standards into the Chinese language”, says Vice-Chair of IEC TC 82 Zhengxin Liu.
“It took a lot of work to overcome potential concerns about technical content as well as administrative processes. I would like to specifically thank IEC TC 82 Vice-Chair Zhengxin Liu, and TC 82 Assistant Secretary Liang Ji as well as joint working group (JWG) 1 Co-Convenor Arne Jacobson for their personal dedication to making this happen. This is a great step forward and sets the precedent to improve the accessibility of IEC standards in the future”, adds IEC TC 82 Secretary George Kelly.
China formally joined the IEC in 1957 and became a permanent member in 2011. It is actively contributing to the IEC International Standards governance and Standards systems improvement.
“The majority of off-grid solar lights which are referred to in IEC TS 62257-9-5 are manufactured in southeast China and are exported throughout the world. Manufacturers and exporters have better access to developing markets if they follow IEC International Standards. In some cases, compliance to these standards is required by national regulations”, Kelly explains.
Working with Lighting Global
IEC TS 62257-9-5 contains test methods that are used for evaluating off-grid solar products for solar modules up to 350 Watts. The methods were originally developed in 2008 through a joint programme involving the International Finance Corporation and the World Bank. Called Lighting Africa, the programme began with pilot activities in Kenya and Ghana. It has since expanded considerably and is now relevant across Africa, Asia, the South Pacific Islands and Latin America. In 2013, the Lighting Asia programme was launched and an umbrella programme was established soon afterwards. Called Lighting Global, it manages the quality standards and assurance activities associated with the programme.
“In 2013, JWG 1 published the first edition of IEC TS 62257-9-5. The document has since been revised twice with new versions being published in 2016 and 2018. By the end of 2018, almost 40 million products that met the Ligthing Global Quality standards, based on testing to IEC TS 622257-9-5 guidelines, had been sold worldwide, benefitting an estimated 180 million people”, says Arne Jacobson, Co-Convenor of JWG 1 with Leon Drotsche. Arne Jacobson is also Director of the Schatz Energy Research Centre at Humboldt State University in California.
Meeting sustainable development goals (SDGs)
The IEC TS 62257 series is one of the key set of IEC publications helping to meet the United Nations SDG 7, which aims to enable access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all by 2030.