The definition for DC Isolator as published in AS/NZS 4417.2 is:
An electrical device that—
(a) is an air-break d.c. rated isolator; and
(b) is for connection to the wiring of a household photovoltaic (PV) electrical installation, other household renewable energy installation, or household energy storage installation.; and includes
(c) any dedicated individual enclosure where the dc isolator is classified as enclosed outdoor.
The old version was AS/NZS IEC 60947.3 has been updated to AS 60947.3:2018 and now has important upgraded safety requirements for DC Switch disconnectors used in PV systems and was written with the requirements of AS/NZS 5033 is mind. It is important that the standard is followed to address the numerous unsafe incidents which have occurred with DC switch disconnectors installed in accordance with AS/NZS 5033. It is easy to identify which of these products is certified to the latest requirements, because the Certificate for the items will have the approved standard as AS 60947.3:2018 and they will be a Certificate of Conformity with the class description of “DC Isolator”.
For information on which State has which requirements, please see the CEC announcement here: http://www.solaraccreditation.com.au/products/dc-isolator-updates.html
To re-certify with us, you need to follow the attached notice from the ESO.
The latest version of AS 60947.3, which has important upgraded safety requirements for these products, was not published until 29 June 2018. Note that there is a 12 month transition period in the standard during which the previous version may be used. However, as this is an important safety issue the Electrical Safety Office (ESO) in Queensland has provided a document with directions for how manufacturers and test laboratories can gain compliance and certification in the interim. A copy of this document is below and we will be certifying on this basis only.
The aim is to get the certificate holders to have their products retested and certified to the new requirements as soon as possible. The ESO are being flexible with the certification requirements to assist us in this goal.
ERAC (the Electrical Regulatory Authorities Council) has issued a new notice for direct plug-in power supplies which are tested to standards requiring two means of securement. You can find the whole notice here: http://erac.gov.au/images/Downloads/4_6%20-%20information%20notice%20-%20021%20-%20power%20supply%20or%20charger%20-%20may%202018.pdf.
In summary, for direct plug-in power supply types only, if they are tested to a standard which requires two means of securement on the enclosure, such as AS/NZS 61558 or AS/NZS 60335, then the two means of securement must be different types, such as ultrasonic welding and screws, or screws and glue, etc., then the test in the notice must be applied. We will be enforcing this for any applications affected by the requirement.
ESO letter on PV Switch disconnectors
Certification requirements for dc isolators for use in solar PV installations
Changes in Risk Level
On 30 June 2018 DC isolators were re-classified, moving from “In-Scope” electrical equipment risk level 1 to risk level 3 under the Electrical Equipment Safety System (EESS) in participating jurisdictions who apply defining standard AS/NZS 4417.2.
The standards that may be considered for certification:
- The current standard is AS 60947-3:2018, which is an adoption of the IEC 60947-3 edition 3.2 with additional Australian deviations (can be applied immediately and will supersede AS/NZS IEC 60947-3:2015 12 months after publication).
- IEC 60947-3 edition 3.2 published in 2015 which includes an appendix specifically for DC Isolators for solar installations.
- Concurrently AS/NZS IEC 60947-3:2015 remains current until 29 June 2019, which is a direct text adoption of IEC 60947-3 edition 3.1. The standard IEC 60947-3 edition 3.1 was published in 2015, however, does not reference any specific criteria for dc isolators for solar PV installations and should not be used solely to ensure the product is suitable for the intended use.
The new standard AS 60947-3:2018:
The new standard includes requirements specifically for DC isolators for use with PV solar installation. The main changes, including Australian deviations, to AS 60947-3:2018 are:
- for devices for use outdoors, a rating of IP56NW (means no water in enclosure after IPX6 water jet test is applied); and
- the solar effects test on switchgear in its enclosure at rated current (this is in the latest IEC 60947-3 edition 3.2 published in 2015).
- There are also a number of classifications that must be applied, and clarity on instructions to be supplied.
The preferred options to apply for certification purposes of dc isolators for solar PV installations is, in order of preference:
- AS 60947-3:2018 *
- IEC 60947-3 edition 3.2 *published 2015 + if for outdoor use IP56 (and preferably IP56NW) + instructional requirements from AS 60947-3:2018
- AS/NZS IEC 60947-3:2015 (*, **) + assessments to ensure suitable for use in solar PV installations + the intent of instructional requirements from AS 60947-3:2018 (if for outdoor use then part of the assessment of suitable criteria for use in solar PV installations should include at least IP56, if not IP56NW rating) – as a transitional allowance prior to upgrading to AS 60947-3.
* : See Note 1,2 and 3
**: Apply NOTE 4
NOTE 1: Test reports for use in options 1), 2) or 3) can be from test facilities accredited to at least IEC 60947-3 edition 3.2 until test facilities are accredited to AS 60947-3:2018. Test reports for option 3) can be from test facilities accredited to AS/NZS IEC 60947-3:2015 or IEC 60947-3 Edition 3.1.
NOTE 2: The certificate of conformity should list Class Specification under which has gained certification, for option 1): “AS 60947-3:2018”; for option 2): “IEC 60947-3 Ed 3.2”; for option 3): “AS/NZS IEC 60947-3:2015”. When using options 2) or 3) the certificate expiry date should not exceed 30 June 2019.
NOTE 3: DC-PV2 and DC21B voltage and current ratings are different. Products certified as DC21B should not be on the same certificate as products certified to DC-PV2.
NOTE 4: additional assessments/criteria/characteristic to be required under option 3 (use of AS/NZS IEC 60947-3), to meet criteria in the current AS/NZS 5033:2014, includes:
- semi-independent or independent manual operation
- not be polarity sensitive
- be load breaking
- be suitable for isolation
- interrupt all live conductors simultaneously
- be marked with on / off (closed / open) position
- be capable of being secured in the open position
- if supplied as a ‘dc isolator’ in a dedicated enclosure (i.e. the dc isolator as sold is a “switchgear inside an enclosure”), have been tested within the enclosure supplied
- if not supplied with a dedicated enclosure details of minimum dimensions of enclosure that it has been tested in
- indicate if suitable for indoor use only or if suitable for outdoor use
- If outdoor use, IP55 minimum when tested in enclosure supplied (more suitable is IP56 and preferred is IP56NW) and, or information of suitable enclosures it can be installed it to obtain the IP rating (if switchgear is of a rotary actuator type, where the actuator extends out of the enclosure, it must be tested with supplied enclosure only)
- be supplied with details of the conventional enclosed thermal current rating (Ithe)
- be supplied with the d.c. voltage (rated operational voltage Ue) and operational current (Ie) ratings for each configuration of contacts the manufacturer allows
- If outdoor use, have current ratings at operating temperatures to cover off installation in situations of “ambient +40°C”
current ratings to be at uninterrupted duty rating (this rating due to issue that switch contacts are not regularly operated to remove / clear oxidisation/dirt accumulation)[:zh]新闻
旧版本的AS/NZS IEC 60947.3:2015已经更新成AS 60947.3:2018。AS 60947.3:2018采纳了标准AS/NZS 5033要求，对应用于PV系统的直流隔离开关的电气安全要求进行了更新。现有已认证的直流隔离开关按照标准AS/NZS 5033要求安装后在使用中出现了大量的意外事故。新版本标准AS 60947.3:2018合理的涵盖了此类风险。因此按照新版本AS 60947.3:2018进行测试与认证变得尤为重要。我们可以轻易分辨出哪些产品符合新标准要求。符合新标准要求的直流隔离开关的证书上会显示这是一份符合性证书，产品分类是直流隔离开关，标准号是AS 60947.3:2018。
最新标准AS 60947.3:2018 已于2018年6月29日发布，对应用于PV系统的直流隔离开关的电气安全要求进行了更新。新标准允许自标准发行后12个月内旧版标准依然有效。然而，因为这是一项重要的电气安全事件,昆士兰电气安全办公室（Electrical Safety Office，ESO）提供了一份指导文件，指导制造商和实验室于过渡期间如何使产品符合标准并获得产品认证证书。如附件所示。我司将以此文件为唯一认证发证基准。
ERAC (Electrical Regulatory Authorities Council 电气管理理事会) 发布了关于要求有两种外壳固定方式的直插式电源的一项最新公告。更多信息请参考此链接：http://erac.gov.au/images/Downloads/4_6%20-%20information%20notice%20-%20021%20-%20power%20supply%20or%20charger%20-%20may%202018.pdf.
概括来讲，对于直插式电源，其适用的测试标准要求外壳需要有两种固定方式的，比如AS/NZS 61558 或者AS/NZS 60335，这两种固定方式需要是不同形式的，例如超声波焊接和螺丝钉，或者螺丝钉和胶水，并且需要按照公告要求对这两种不同形式的固定方式进行测试。[:]