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Towards internationally aligned test methods and performance requirements for televisions

Panel: 7. Appliances, product policy and the ICT supply chain

This is a peer-reviewed paper.

Catriona McAlister, Sea Green Tree S.L., Spain
Jeremy Tait, Tait Consulting


This paper presents results of an investigation into the status of and practical steps towards global harmonisation of television test standards and energy efficiency policy requirements.

With regard to test standards, whilst a reasonable degree of harmonisation is found in the foundation test standard used, regional policies dictate variations and additions. The most important difference is the sample preparation (screen luminance setting), which makes test results subject to inconsistent variation between the Chinese and IEC methods.

Policy analysis reveals a startling array of different thresholds in use, despite televisions being very technologically similar the world over. Due to the wide range of efficiencies in the market, minimum energy performance standards (MEPS) tend to be set at a power demand up to four times higher than the best performing models. This means that there is significant scope to tighten MEPS whilst retaining a wide consumer choice. Findings suggest that luminance-based policy requirements (screen brightness per Watt) are best avoided as they can reward brighter rather than more efficient TVs.

The policy approaches that most accurately reflect the actual distribution of TV performance involve curved threshold lines with fixed baseloads. Technology-specific policies are best avoided as there is no significant change in the main service of the TV across different screen technologies. A methodology to facilitate the development of internationally-comparable and aligned representative efficiency thresholds is proposed: it involves a ladder of benchmark performance levels from which policy-makers can select levels for their own local policies and labelling schemes. Such an approach has been applied for other globally similar products such as electric motors and external power supplies and is being developed for distribution transformers.


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