Switchboard Manufacturers Test Assembly to SANS 61439-1&2

Due to increased inquiries and requests from customers in the electrical industry, it has become advantageous to transition from the current SANS 60439-1 to the new SANS 61439-1&2.

Switchboard Manufacturers KZN have tested their upgraded assembly system at the South African Bureau Of Standards (SABS) NETFA Laboratory in Bronkhorstspruit. 

Shane O’Reilly and Andrew MCarthy lead the team that designed and developed the assembly that passed the tests with ease.
The tests were completed under the auspices of the Short-Circuit Laboratory Manager, Seth Mnisi.
The following tests were completed:
1) Strength of Materials-10.2
  • Resistance to corrosion.
  • Thermal stability and resistance to abnormal heat and fire of insulting materials.
  • resistance to ultra-violet (UV) radiation.
  • resistance to mechanical impact.
  • durability of marking.
  • lifting and transport.

2) Degree of Protection of Enclosures- 10.3 

Validate protection against direct contact with live parts, as well as protection against ingress of solid foreign objects and liquids, in accordance with IEC 60529.

3) Clearances and Creepage Distances – 10.4 

Verify that the clearance and creepage distance enable the assembly to withstand the following:

  • Exceptional, transient overvoltage (lighting, HV operations),
  • Operating voltage and temporary overvoltage.

4) Protection against electrical shock and integrity of protective circuits- 10.5

Verify that:

  • The effective continuity between the exposed conductive parts of the assembly and the protective circuit.
  • The short-circuit withstand strength of protective circuit.

5) Incorporation of switching devices and components-10.6-

Ensure the compliance of equipment implementation in accordance with the rules of manufacture and EMC regulations, if applicable.

6) Internal electrical circuits and connections- 10.7

Verify the conformity of implementation and dimensioning of internal circuits and connections. The following should be carefully checked:

  • Short-circuit withstand strength.
  • Temperature-rise withstand.
  • The section of the neutral conductor.
  • Identification of conductors.

7) Terminals for external conductors-10.8

Verify the compliance of implementation and dimensioning of terminals for external conductors.

8) Dielectric properties-10.9

Test each type of circuit in the assembly to ensure:

  • Power-frequency withstand voltage.
  • Impulse withstand voltage.

9) Verification of temperature rise -10.10


  • Thermal stability of the loaded assembly,
  • That the temperatures are controlled on accessible parts, connections and equipment devices.

10) Short -circuit withstand strength-10.11

In comparison to a tested reference design or by testing, verify the level of withstand assigned to the reported short circuit current (unless excluded)

11) Electromagnetic compatibility -10.12

Verify EMC requirements via tests, Except if:

  • The incorporated devices and components comply with ECM requirements for the environment that has been specified;
  • Their installation and cabling comply with the specifications of the manufacturers.

12) Mechanical operation – 10.13

Verify via tests the mechanical operation of removable parts (including any insertion locking). Enclosures, partitions and fastenings should be able to withstand the wear-and-tear of normal use under short circuit condition.

All of the above test were completed and comply with SANS/IEC 61439-2012/2011 Edition 2- part 1 & 2 

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