Previously, we explored the emerging developments around UV legislation and standardisation and what they are likely to mean for UV businesses. In this follow-up article, we’ll take a closer look at how the regulatory landscape should evolve to create a conducive environment for further innovation.
Today, UV-C LED disinfection has several use cases, notably for air and surface cleaning, as well as water treatment. However, although the use of UV for disinfection dates back over a century, the regulatory environment around the technology stays immature. Fragmentation persists significantly across geography, industry and utility.
Looking ahead to 2023, there is a need for standards to simplify UV-C legislation to foster further innovation around UV-C LED air disinfection and other germicidal applications. A lack of standards and regulations for these applications affects the adoption and market trust in innovative technologies. In this article, we delve into the outlook for 2023 and beyond by exploring the potential implications and advancements in this field
Taking a forward-looking approach, there are discussions around changing standardisation rules for medium-pressure UV lamps, as well as greater standardisation planned for municipal LED applications. Translating these discussions into legislation will take time, but it is key for businesses to proactively stay informed about the current trajectory at the earliest opportunity.
At the ICULTA 2023 in Berlin, new upcoming GUV (germicidal ultraviolet) Guidelines and standards for air disinfection were presented as ‘under development’:
ASHREA GPC 37 – Guidelines for the application of upper-air UV-C devices to control the transmission of airborne pathogens
ASHREA 185.3 – Method of testing in-room devices and systems for microorganisms or inactivation in a chamber.
NALMCO – Creating a newly standardized curriculum and certification protocols for GUV devices maintenance staff, installation technicians and system designers in the field.
For UV-C water disinfection, there are upcoming test standards for the use of UV LEDs in public drinking water disinfection. Official drafts are planned to be released at end of 2023:
DIN 19294-1 (published)/ DIN 19294-2 (planned end 2023)
Testing of Composition, Function and Disinfection Effectiveness for (LP) Low Pressure UV devices and (MP) Medium Pressure UV devices.
DIN 19294-3 (published) / DIN 19294-4 (planned end 2023)
Reference radiometers for LP and MP UV devices
DIN 19294 – 5 (DRAFT planned end 2023) Devices for the disinfection of water using devices equipped with UV LEDs – requirements and testing – Research project DINoLED project
The goal of the DINoLED project is the development of a DIN draft standard for UV LED-based water disinfection devices in public drinking water treatment (point-of-entry and point-of-use devices are not considered in the standard). The DINoLED project is funded by the German Federal ministry of Economic Affairs and Energy and it is the result of a cooperation between several UV companies (Xylem, OSRAM) and educational institutes such as Technologiezetrum Wasser.
In terms of UV LED products, a clear distinction between regulation and validation should be kept front of mind. Regulation sets parameters that UV technologies must adhere to, while validation provides companies with the means to decide whether they are working within those parameters.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, air disinfection has received a major push forward. Innovative technologies like LED and UV are now more common and better known. In the US, threshold limit values (TLVs) supply recommendations around biological exposure to UV radiation. All radiation below 250 nm has different TLV standards, with exposure limits being much higher than they were previously. A study on far-UVC at 222nm, published in Nature Scientific Reports (2022), showed that it efficiently inactivates airborne pathogens. This research also showed that 222nm devices are safe for human skin and eyes.
Image: Study presented by David Brenner at ICULTA conference (Columbia University) showing the effects of FAR UVC to skin
Currently, most of the responsibility around the design, production and operational quality is with the manufacturer of UV-C LED disinfection solutions. The current lack of clarity around regulations and guidelines means that many manufacturers are simply taken on their word. Compliance is promoted through marketing claims, which may or may not be verifiable.
UV validation brings confidence, making it crucial for manufacturers to test and validate their systems. While clear standards exist for water disinfection, challenges arise when it comes to new LED technology such as UV-C LED. This is primarily due to variations in validation requirements across applications and the power variability of current LEDs. These variations depend on the LED manufacturer, product, drive current and temperature. Adding to the complexity is the fact that current LED datasheets are rarely representatives of the ‘real-world’ performance. Thus, to obtain reliable data, it becomes necessary to measure system performance in operation.
The opportunities of UV-C LED systems and their applications are being explored by the industry. There are many challenges to overcome, such as the power efficiency, costs and reliability. At Nedap, our LED driver technology can support testing and validation of UV-C LED solutions, supplying data insights and full control of the power supply. Our smart driver technology is designed to suit current regulations, with an eye on future developments. Get in touch with us to find out how our UV technology can help you navigate the current regulatory landscape, with a design that prioritises both validation and standardisation.
To make the Unimulti Lamp Driver more universally applicable, the input voltage range has been extended. This new version now also supports the North American standard input voltage of 120Vac.
Sustainability is one of the biggest challenges facing businesses today, and solutions such as Nedap’s driver technology hold the key to tackling the issue head–on.
Nedap UV drivers with high Power Factor and low THD, reduce up to 97% of the power grid losses, compared to others in the industry. This adds up to the 2% energy saving due to the high efficiency of the Nedap lamp driver itself.
Sustainability is an increasingly important factor for consumers, investors and businesses alike. According to research, 85% of investors considered environmental, social, and corporate governance (ESG) factors in their decisions (Gartner, 2020). Nowadays, 85% of global consumers said they have shifted towards a more sustainable buying behavior in the past five years (Business Wire, 2021). Embracing sustainability is not only necessary but can also boost profits by as much as 60% through efficiency improvements (McKinsey, 2020). Companies may want to boost their sustainability credentials, but they need to do so in a way that not only doesn’t impact productivity negatively but can improve it too. The key to doing this is having the right technology in place. This is where Nedap’s driver technology comes in.
Ultra violet (UV) low and medium–pressure lamps are crucial components for water treatment and curing applications. The lamp drivers that power these UV lamps, can have a positive influence on the overall sustainability of the system. For instance, choosing well specified drivers with regard to efficiency, Power Factor and THD, specially at high power installations. Implementing high quality drivers reduces the carbon footprint of purification plants or curing equipment significantly.
Image: Overheated neutral
We often see systems that use electricity in a way that is not always best compatible with conventional power grids, and this can cause additional losses. The impacts of lower Power Factor and higher harmonic currents and voltages, are increased losses in power from infrastructure such as transformers and power lines, as well as overheating and degradation of conductors, insulating material and other connected equipment.
Image: Thermal images show uneven heating in the windings of a Three Phase Step-down Transformer due to Harmonics.
But not only do these compatibility issues lead to less efficiency in the short term. As more power is consumed than should have been otherwise necessary, it also gives components a shorter lifespan. It means they have to be replaced sooner. This is both unfavorable for the environment and for a company’s profits.
It is for this reason that increasing the efficiency and lower the THD of UV lamp drivers is vital to helping regulate this use of power, leading to greater efficiency in the way electricity is consumed while also extending the lifespan of components. This has long been the ambition of many manufacturers, but the driver technology has not always been up to the task. Nedap has changed all that.
Committing to sustainability is not just a moral and financial imperative for companies, it is something they will increasingly have to adhere to in order to comply with legislation. The European Commission has introduced the corporate directive as part of the EU’s Green New Deal, which aims to make the EU carbon neutral by 2050. On 5 January 2023 the Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD) entered into force in Europe. This directive requires companies to report on how sustainability issues impact their business and how their operations affect people and the planet.
In 2022, the UK also enacted two mandatory disclosure laws, that require certain companies to provide climate-related financial disclosures in their strategic report. Similarly, the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has also proposed new rules to enhance the regulatory framework for disclosures.
Moreover, the International Sustainability Standards Board (ISSB) has passed a vote on new global climate and sustainability disclosure rules, which will come into effect in 2024. And while it will be up to individual jurisdictions or countries to decide whether the standards should be mandatory, the ISSB has said it will push for them to be adopted globally.
These developments illustrate that sustainability will be one of the defining issues facing companies in the coming years, and it is no longer something that can be avoided.
Nedap’s driver technology combines high efficiency power conversion with peerlesscontrol for optimized UV output and lamp life. Recommended by major UV lamp manufacturers, Nedap’s drivers power lamps effectively, providing solutions for low–pressure and medium–pressure, and LED lamps. Nedap’s lamp drivers also provideflexible stepless dimming to help build more energy–efficient systems that provide a significant boost to the environment.
Intelligent solutions for low pressure UV lamps combine high-efficiency electrical power to UV conversion with intelligent controls and pre-programmed lamp characteristic settings for optimal lamp life, as well as for HO- and Amalgam lamps.
Nedap’s technology has been used in New York City’s largest UV drinking water purification plant, which provides 8.3 billion liters of clean water to the more than nine million inhabitants each day. In this plant 12,000 240 W Low pressure UV lamps are powered by Nedap –Assuming 50% of the lamps are on at 80% power–. An increase of 5% efficiency in the UV lamp drivers equals 590.114 kWh reduction per year. This translates into a reduction of 118.028 kg in CO2 emissions and annual savings of $63,440 –Based on Industrial energy price of $ 0,1075 per kWh and € 0,150 per kWh–.
Medium pressure lamps are widely used in different industrial technologies such as printing for ink curing. Nedap’s extensive field of experience with a large number of lamp drivers paired with medium-pressure lamps has proven high product reliability and increased lamp life. Additionally, these lamp drivers also help UV system integrators to create more sustainable solutions by reducing the loss in power grids.
Power Factor and Total Harmonic Distortion (THD) impact the ‘real electric power’ that is converted into UV light. UV lamp drivers with a low Power Factor and high THD consume up to 9,5 % more energy. This adds up to the energy loss due to low efficiency of the lamp driver itself.
For instance, if a UV printer has a total lamp power of 129,6 kW (6 lamps of 21,6 kw) and operates 4000 hours annually, the total power draw should be 518,400 kWh (129,6 x 4000). But because low Power Factor (as low as 0,8) and high THD (measured 60%) in low quality lamp drivers cause power grid losses, an additional 45,562 kWh is lost every year due to low cost and “under-specified lamp drivers”.
When using Nedap drivers with high Power Factor (0,99) and low THD (5%), we reduce the losses with 97% to just 1082 kWh. –Based on an average of 8% power loss of power grid worldwide–. The 44.480 kWh energy saving by Nedap technology equals 9.000 kg CO2 reduction a year.
Currently the only loss in energy that resembles a financial loss as well for the user of the printer, is the energy efficiency of the driver itself. In this case €2,933 is saved every year by using Nedap lamp drivers with 2% better efficiency.
For curing applications, LED UV lights are used more and more. Also in these systems it’s important to be aware of the negative influence that a poor Power Factor can have on sustainability of operations. Especially when the LED’s are dimmed, the Power Factor Can decrease, causing more losses.
Nedap offers a modular system that realizes power supplies from 1500W up to 6kW for UV LED curing systems. These units can be externally set for Voltage- or current control. Output voltages up to 120Vdc offer series operation of LED modules.
Are you looking for a more sustainable UV lamp driver solution? One that achieves the highest levels of efficiency and longevity in the market? Find out how Nedap can move your business forward with smart lamp driver technology.
Contact us or download the PDF version of the article here:
Legislation and standardisation:
The impact on UV businesses for 2023 and beyond
Looking ahead to 2023, there are discussions around changing standardisation rules for medium-pressure UV lamps. It will take time before these developments are translated into legislation but it is important for businesses to be aware of the current trajectory.
In Europe UV technologies have been used for drinking water disinfection since the 1950s. Even in the US, where they were adopted much later, the use of UV light for water treatment is now well established. Looking ahead to 2023, there are discussions around changing standardisation rules for medium-pressure UV lamps. It will take time before these developments are translated into legislation but it is important for businesses to be aware of the current trajectory.
What is the influence of regulation in the UV-C industry?
Any discussion of regulations as they pertain to UV-C technology must separate legislation and standardisation. On the legal side, there have not been many changes in recent years. While there were some alterations in terms of general requirements, driven largely by new EU directives, legislation aimed directly at UV-C has not been necessarily forthcoming.
In terms of standardisation, in the last couple of years, new validation standards have emerged in Europe. These include ÖNORM M 5873-1 and DIN 19294-1, standards that apply to UV water disinfection.
The recently issued ÖNORM and DIN standards provide more detailed criteria for UV lamps and ballasts. Today, it is possible to dim lamps with many UV systems, which is now tested under these new standards. As UV-C output can vary substantially when lamps are dimmed, it was important this was added as a factor within new validation standards.
In the US, meanwhile, the recently published “Innovative Approaches for Validation of Ultraviolet Disinfection Reactors for Drinking Water Systems” is the result of a four-year project looking at new approaches for UV dose monitoring and validation. The document provides a reference for new and enhanced validation methods developed since the publication of the UV Disinfection Guidance Manual (UVDGM), issued all the way back in 2006.
Another validation standard, NSF/ANSI 55, is also relatively new and serves as a residential protocol for proving the performance of UV equipment under specific conditions. In addition, there are also US validation guidelines applicable to UV technology suppliers operating in that market.
Furthermore, the revised EU Drinking Water Directive, which member states must transpose into national legislation by January 2023, promotes UV as an acceptable disinfection method for municipal water, providing water suppliers can demonstrate “that any approach to disinfection is robust and appropriate”.
Looking forward, we will see what impact the revised EU directive on drinking water will have. Under the new rules, water suppliers will have to conduct a risk assessment for their water treatment systems. If water suppliers take these legislative changes seriously, it will present a good opportunity for UV providers to increase business in the municipal area.
It is clear, therefore, that the current regulatory environment for UV-C light contains more than a few nuances that businesses should be aware of. As such, it is important that all OEMs test and validate their systems.
UV solutions are tailor-made to meet specific user needs for different applications. To validate these integrated systems, it’s important that different scenarios can be tested. Nedap lamp driver technology facilitates OEMs to test and validate their systems in four ways:
Our driver technology comes with integrated software that enables you to configure lamp driver settings in an easy way to test different custom settings and monitor performance.
For testing and validating UV systems, extensive dimming is used to simulate dirty UV Quartz sleeves. This makes testing easier, speeding up the inspection process.
Using a lamp driver that is already tested and certified for use in the European market (CE), and also approved for the US (UL) or Canadian (cUL) markets.
With over 30 years of experience, our engineers can help OEMs design power supply cabinets that protect against harsh environments, such as maritime and offshore, severe shock attenuation, wide temperature ranges, and horticulture, as well as food and pharmaceutical industries.
At Nedap, our validation is our added value. Our smart driver technology is designed to suit current regulations, with one eye on future developments. It delivers system efficiencies that you can trust, providing cost savings and sustainability benefits. Get in touch with us to find out how our UV technology can help you navigate the current regulatory minefield – designed with both validation and standardisation in mind.
Download the PDF version of the article here:
6-9 November 2023.
Aquatech Amsterdam will be hosting the premier water trade exhibition worldwide, featuring processes, drinking, and wastewater.
Nedap will participate in the RadTech (Conference & Exhibition) 2023, to be held from October 17-18, 2023 in Munich, Germany.
Two-day conference. It will focus on the future of radiation curing, explore emerging trends and advancements, and scrutinize new applications of UV/EB curing.
Nedap will participate in the WEFTEC 2023
Smart and proven driver solutions for UV treatment and advanced oxidization technology.
Nedap supplied the lamp drivers to one of the major companies in the printing industry in the USA. The company wanted to change the power supply to more intelligent Electronic Lamp Drivers.
The company wanted to improve the overall quality and reliability of their product by converting to new driver technology.
The CE and UL/cUL approved medium pressure UV Lamp drivers enable more stable UV output and higher efficiency.
- Energy saving
- Less printer downtime
- Waste reduction as the lamp life is extended
- The compact driver design saves costs as less cabinet space is required
Changing from electromagnetic 50/60 HZ ballasts to Nedap electronic lamp drivers.
The Lamp Driver Efficiency output Graph shows the excellent out put stability and high efficiency, over a wide input voltage range.
Nr. 1 technology
Most efficient driver technology, requires less installation space >900.000 electronic UV lamp drivers installed and in use worldwide.
Approved by all major UV lamp manufacturers worldwide.
Nedap drivers are designed to last. Lamp lifetime > 10 years.
Relevant data for cleaner operation.
The 4kW driver platform is the most flexible product developed by Nedap. It gives you full power to develop your specialised product by offering maximum flexibility in configuration, choice of UV lamp and serial or parallel operation. The compact design makes it ideal for disinfection and curing applications where space is limited.
With Nedap’s integrated software and Modbus / Bluetooth interface, owners get real time diagnostic data of individual drivers. These valuable insights about the functioning of the systems allow for predictive maintenance in which downtime is minimised. Service personnel can use the UV Monitor app to see the equipment’s status and view its performance.
The ambition of Nedap is to create technology that has a positive impact in people’s professional lives. The 4/8 kW lamp driver platform empower integrators to easily adopt and deploy intelligent UV treatment- and disinfection solutions. The driver platform is compatible with most major medium pressure UV lamps, has pre-programmed power settings and can easily be configurated via the PC lamp driver tool and integrated software.
The robust and compact design also make the 4/8 kW driver platform very suitable for marine applications. The technology onboard ships must operate at high efficiency in order to load the ship’s electronic grid as carefully as possible. Being aware of harmonic distortion – also known as interference – these kinds of systems is important. The combination of high power factor (>0,98), low Total Harmonic Distortion (<5%) and high efficiency (96,5%) distinguishes Nedap’s lamp driver technology.
Nedap supplied the lamp drivers for the largest UV drinking water purification plant for New York City, the biggest one ever built. The plant can supply 8.3 billion liters of clean water to the more than 9 million inhabitants of New York and environs.
The water is supplied from the Catskill / Delaware reservoirs 160 km from the city of New York.
To purify the water, 6000 UV Nedap lamp drivers were installed to drive 12.000 low pressure lamps. In this way the gigantic, hyper-modern purification plant is highly efficient in energy use.
- Lower operating costs
- Ease of operation and maintenance
In the end, the decisive factor was our low-energy solution. This not only saves a great deal of money, but no less importantly, also reduces CO2 emissions, emphasizing Nedap’s focus on more sustainable operation.
Image: Building the water purification plant for New York City
Most efficient UV driver technology
All over the world there is awareness that clean drinking water is likely to become a scarce resource. New technology will help to increase production and to make the underlying processes more efficient at the same time. Nedap’s Low Pressure Lamp Drivers have a proven efficiency of at least 95%.
Full control with Nedap software
Dedicated Nedap software can be used by engineers to test the electronic platform and to fine tune the UV lamp settings in relation to the required UV levels. The embedded software has a diagnose functionality to report about lamp status, lamp failure, lamp driver temperature and other system operations. A perfect solution to improve the im plementation processes and to reduce installation costs and time.
Nr. 1 technology
Most efficient driver technology, requires less installation space. >900.000 electronic UV lamp drivers installed and in use worldwide.
Digital lamp selection and optimization and UV lamp dimming down to 30% and beyond.
Nedap UV drivers are designed to last. The average lifetime production is more than 10 years.
Relevant data for cleaner operation. Embedded software for system data reporting.