Since 2011 the European Union has had an ecodesign regulation for fans, Regulation (EU) 327/2011, that has had a positive impact. It has transformed the market, removing inefficient fans, stimulating innovation, increased the use of higher efficient fans, and between 2012 and 2017 saved an estimated 46,800 GWh of electricity consumption. The next step in the journey is to further reduce energy consumption by providing additional, reliable standardised data to improve the application of the fan.
Regulation of minimum efficiency has been proven to transform the market and reduce energy consumption. The next step is to improve how fans are used to further reduce energy consumption.
Responding to criticism from other stakeholders the fan industry acknowledges a need to provide additional data describing the energy losses at partial load operation. Rarely is a fan used at its best efficiency point. Standardisation is required that describes the performance characteristics at other operating points. Those standards can then be used by regulators and by market surveillance to provide users with reliable standardised data to make informed decisions. It gives the fan industry a level platform from which to innovate and develop new solutions.
The EVIA Problem Statement on ‘Fan System Efficiency – Regulation and Standardisation’ published in October 2020 defines the problem of today and identifies the elements that need to be resolved to provide a standardised methodology. A methodology of precisely and reliably describing the energy losses at multiple operating points throughout the characteristics of the fan.
This provides data where integrators and users can make better informed decisions of the applications, installation and use of fans. It provides a foundation where regulators and industry can be creative with protocols and marketing tools. The energy losses could be described in terms of power loss, efficiency, specific fan power or energy ratios. The energy losses could be shown in selection programs and confidently compared across suppliers giving better informed choice.
This latest document, this time supported by the entire European fan industry, is a proposal for a European Commission standardisation request (sReq) on a future energy efficiency measure to reduce the impact of fans and increase the efficient use of fans. It sets out a pathway towards terms and definitions, and to the provision of additional reliable standardised data to meet future improved efficiencies in applications.