Electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) testing is there to ensure that your electrical device does not emit a huge amount of electromagnetic interference and that your device continues to constantly function as intended by the manufacturer.
Due to the dangers of radiation emitted, regulatory bodies around the globe have placed restrictions on the levels of emissions that electrical products can produce. Therefore, manufacturers have to do due diligence to follow key standards in safeguarding the safety of customers.
EMC testing includes checks for emissions and susceptibility testing. Most standards refer to tests conducted in open-area test sites (OATS). These sites are useful for the emissions testing of large equipment systems. Testing a physical prototype is usually carried out indoors, in a specialized EMC test chamber. It’s also possible to use digital simulations to test models.
The test equipment, environment and any software used must be suitable, and properly calibrated and maintained. Usually a schedule of EMC testing is produced in advance, with the results documented in a subsequent report.
Emissions are typically measured for radiated field strength, with antennas used to detect emissions from all directions. A spectrum analyzer is often used to measure cross-frequency emission levels. An oscilloscope may be used to visualize and characterize pulse emission waveforms.
For radiated field susceptibility testing, a high-powered radio frequency (RF) signal is directed at the device under test (DUT). Conducted voltage and current susceptibility testing, however, may require the use of a high-powered signal generator and a current clamp to inject the signal.
Our latest report ‘High Performance’ explores the discipline of controlling emissions of, and immunity to, electromagnetic disturbances (EMC). The report highlights how key EMC standards can prevent errors and the incorrect operation of electronic devices, and safety systems, which could lead to the increased health and safety risks of consumers.
The High Performance report also covers:
Electromagnetic compatibility and testing
Power considerations in appliance design
Standards and opportunity: connected manufacturing, IoT and electric vehicles
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