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Restriction of Hazardous Substances (RoHS) Directive

To gain market access into the European Union, there are legislation that restrict the use of potentially dangerous substances in products.  One such legislation is the 2011/65/EU Directive (commonly referred to as RoHS 2) which requires certain hazardous substances to be substituted by safer alternatives (when possible) in electrical and electronic equipment (EEE).   A Regulation is a “binding legislative act” and “must be applied in its entirety across the EU (European Union, 2020).

Annex I of the Directive is applicable to the following types of EEE:

  1. Large household appliances
  2. Small household appliances
  3. IT and telecommunications equipment
  4. Consumer equipment
  5. Lighting equipment
  6. Electrical and electronic tools
  7. Toys, leisure and sports equipment
  8. Medical devices
  9. Monitoring and control instruments including industrial monitoring and control instruments
  10. Automatic dispensers
  11. Other EEE not covered by any of the categories above

The Directive explicitly defines in Annex II the ten restricted substances and their allowable weight in homogenous materials:

  1. Lead (0,1 %)
  2. Mercury (0,1 %)
  3. Cadmium (0,01 %)
  4. Hexavalent chromium (0,1 %)
  5. Polybrominated biphenyls (PBB) (0,1 %)
  6. Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDE) (0,1 %)
  7. Bis(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP) (0,1 %)
  8. Butyl benzyl phthalate (BBP) (0,1 %)
  9. Dibutyl phthalate (DBP) (0,1 %)
  10. Diisobutyl phthalate (DIBP) (0,1 %)

Due to the fact that a Directive “sets out a goal that all EU countries much achieve, however, it is up to the individual countries to devise their own laws on how to reach these goals” (European Union, 2020), fuses for overcurrent protection are ready for use by the end user with no further processing necessary so they fall within the scope of EEE, and therefore must comply with the RoHS directive.  The RoHS Directive requires that compliant products be affixed with the CE Mark (shown below) and that manufacturers draw up an EU Declaration of Conformity.

CE Mark as found in Article 30 of Regulation (EC) No 765/2008

Many members of this NEMA group produce RoHS compliant fuses and information on RoHS compliance (as well as other product environmental information) on their product pages.  To obtain more information, visit the specific manufacturer site as shown below:

https://www.eaton.com
https://www.littelfuse.com
https://ep-us.mersen.com

For more information on RoHS , visit https://ec.europa.eu/environment/waste/rohs_eee/index_en.htm

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