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RoHS Directive

Introduction

RoHS directive (2002/95/EC) aims to limit the use of six hazardous substances in the composition of electric and electronic equipment. Since 8th June 2011 this directive have been recast in directive 2011/65/EU (RoHS 2) on the restriction of the use of certain hazardous substances in electrical and electronic equipment. 2011/65/EU Directive came into force July 21st, 2011 and transposed by member states before January 2nd, 2013, when Directive 2002/95/EC has been officially repealed.

This Directive is applicable to all new products place on the European Union market, whether imported or manufactured in the EU.

RoHS substances

The article 4 of Directive 2002/95/EC define the substances involved, and the decision of the Committee on August 18, 2005 specifies the maximum allowable concentrations by weight of homogeneous material:

Hazardous substancesMaximum concentration
Lead0,1%
Mercury0,1%
Cadmium0,01%
Chromium VI0,1%
Polybrominated biphenyls (PBB)0,1%
Polybrominated diphenyls ethers (PBDE)0,1%

Concerned equipments

Directive 2002/95/EC applied to eight categories of products specified in the European WEEE directive:

  • Category 1: Large household appliances (LHA)
  • Category 2: Small household appliances (SHA)
  • Category 3: IT and telecommunications equipment
  • Category 4: Consumer equipment
  • Category 5: Lighting equipment
  • Category 6: Electrical and electronic tools
  • Category 7: Toys, leisure and sports equipment
  • Category 10: Automatic dispensers

Batteries are not covered by the directive (because aleready covered by other European texts such as Directive 2006/66/EC on batteries and accumulators and waste batteries and accumulators).

Since the recast in 2011, the new RoHS 2 directive includes categories 8 and 9 and create a 11th category:

  • Category 8: Medical devices (including in vitro diagnostic medical devices)
  • Category 9: Monitoring and control instruments including industrial monitoring and control instruments
  • Category 11: Other EEE not covered by any of the categories above.

Labelling

Since 1st of July 2006, all new products put on the market are expected to comply with the RoHS directive. Since 22nd of July 2014, the new RoHS 2directive requires that products bearing ‘CE’ marking are presumed in the absence of evidence to the contrary, to comply with the directive.

However, some manufacturers have introduced their own identification system: “Pb free”; “RoHS compliant”; “Lead free”; etc.

References

– European parliament and council. Directive 2011/65/EC of June, 28th2011
– European parliament and council. Directive 2002/95/EC of January, 27th 2003.
– European parliament and council. Commission decision amending directive 2002/95/EC of the European parliament and of the council notified under 2005/618/EC. August 18th 2005.

Updated on July 31, 2017

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