Designing with Accessory Power Components

Posted on 4/22/19 8:13 AM


One way to design electrical products for use in global markets is to incorporate accessory power distribution components. Those based on the IEC 60320 standards can help make it so no reconfiguration will be needed by the end user.

Equipment systems that use multiple electrical or electronic devices, such as industrial, information technology, medical laboratory, and food production, can benefit from including accessory power components into the product design.

IEC 60320 Accessory Power Components

The components can include: power inlet, outlet, connector, plug connector, and jumper cord set.


Power Inlet

The IEC 60320 inlet is the part of the appliance coupler that provides power to the equipment via connection with the connector. Interpower offers snap-in and screw-mount options.

One of the most common methods of connecting a detachable cord set to an electrical or electronic piece of equipment is by incorporating an IEC 60320 power inlet into the product design. By designing with an inlet, the manufacturer can attach a country-specific cord set (a country-specific plug on one end with an IEC 60320 connector on the other end) just prior to shipment. This allows the equipment manufacturer to create one product for sale worldwide.



The IEC 60320 outlet is the part of the interconnection coupler that provides power to peripheral equipment via connection with the plug connector. Interpower offers snap-in and screw-mount options.



The IEC 60320 connector is commonly molded or assembled on to flexible cable. Two of the most common connectors offered by Interpower are IEC 60320 C13 and C19.


Plug Connector

The corresponding component to the outlet is the IEC 60320 plug connector, which is commonly molded or assembled on to flexible cable.

Sheet  I with C19 Jumper cord Set

Jumper Cord Set

A jumper cord set is a combination of a connector and a plug connector on flexible cable.


Accessory Power Products

aps-blkAccessory Power Strip

At its core, the Interpower Accessory Power Strip incorporates the AC power inlet with multiple AC power outlets, typically four but as many as 10 outlets. Other features commonly included are on/off switches and circuit protection, such as circuit breakers.

“It is important to note that overcurrent protection is for the entire power strip. A power strip with a 15A circuit breaker does not mean that each outlet can deliver 15A maximum. It means that the entire power strip, whether four or 10 outlets, can deliver up to 15A across all outlets combined,” explained Dan Ford, Technical Support Specialist at Interpower.

pduPower Distribution Unit

The Interpower Power Distribution Unit fits into a 19-inch rack. While similar to an accessory power strip, it is larger in size and is in a case enclosure.

The most common place to find a power distribution unit is in an equipment rack. All of the components can be installed in one rack and work together as a specific unit. It is designed to hold different components of a system. Examples include a complete computer system (monitor, CPU, keyboard, and printer), test equipment, medical research equipment, and telephone equipment.

Incorporating Accessory Power

“At Interpower, we can make it easier to build equipment that can be sold worldwide because different components work together in one system. Instead of having to make four different systems to export to four different countries, a company can design one system and then add a cord with a country-specific plug,” Dan said. “This allows the same system to be exported globally with cost-saving benefits.”

Additional Resources

For more information, see Accessory Power, the Featured Product page, More Information on Accessory Power, Opening Up New Market Opportunities with an Accessory Power System white paper, and Accessory Power for Worldwide Markets webcast

Interpower offers free technical support. For further assistance, please see Interpower’s contact information below.

Topics: product design, designing for export, IEC 60320, IEC 60320 inlets, IEC 60320 outlets

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