Europe’s Code of Conduct Version 5 Released

A new set of efficiency targets for external power supplies (EPS) has just been released by the European Commission (EC), raising the bar for adapters that ship with many consumer and office electronic products in the EU.

The EC's voluntary Code of Conduct (CoC) for External Power Supplies (Version 5) replaces the previous version from 2009 with tighter requirements plus an additional active mode efficiency load test point.

As with version 4, the new CoC sets minimum allowable requirements for single voltage output EPSs with less than 250 W of output power. Specifications include maximum no-load power consumption and minimum active mode efficiency limits. There are separate requirements for “low voltage” products (defined as having an output <6 V and ≥550 mA) and "standard voltage" products (all other EPSs).

The new version includes an added lower load minimum efficiency requirement. Besides the average active mode efficiency requirement found in earlier versions, (the average of the efficiencies measured at 25 percent, 50 percent, 75 percent, and 100 percent loads), version 5 also requires a minimum efficiency level at 10 percent load. This was added to address EPS conversion efficiency in applications that spend a significant portion of their time in lower power idle modes.

The program specifications are shown in the tables below.

Table 1.   EC CoC No-load Power Consumption Limits


Rated Output Power (Pno )

No-load power consumption

Tier 1

Tier 2

> 0.3 W and < 49 W

0.150 W

0.075 W

> 49 W and  < 250 W

0.250 W

0.150 W

Mobile handheld battery driven and < 8 W

0.075 W

0.075 W

Table 2.   EC CoC Energy-Efficiency Criteria for Active Mode (excl. Low Voltage EPSs)


Table 3. EC CoC Energy-Efficiency Criteria for Active Mode for Low Voltage EPSs



Source for Tables 1, 2, and 3:  EC Code of Conduct on Energy Efficiency of External Power Supplies, 10/29/13. Note: “ln” refers to the natural logarithm.  

The effective date for Tier 1 is January 1, 2014, with Tier 2, January 1, 2016.

For a copy of the CoC version 5 requirements, click here. For additional information on the Code of Conduct program, click here.   

Editor's note: This blog was originally published on EDN.

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