Electromagnetic Compatibility Testing

Electromagnetic Compatibility Testing

(Did You know?)

Washington Laboratories has been providing Electromagnetic Compatibility (EMC) Testing and Radio Frequency (RF) Testing for over thirty years.

Our full-service Electromagnetic Compatibility Testing offerings include:

EMC Testing Overview

The founders of Washington Laboratories, wrote “The Electromagnetic Compatibility Handbook” that is still a trusted reference source. Learn more about the history of Washington Laboratories

EMC testing is a focus on two two kinds of issues – emissions and susceptibilty (also known as immunity).

  • Emissions testing is related to the generation of unwanted electromagnetic interference (EMI) by equipment operation, and to the steps necessary to reduce or avoid the unwanted emissions from escaping into the environment.
  • Immuniy testing focuses on the correct operation of electrical equipment while withstanding unplanned or potential electromagnetic interference.

About EMC

Electromagnetic Compatibility (EMC) covers a broad discipline and touches the operation of equipment that greatly affects our modern lives.  In essence, the “goal of EMC” is the result of all electrical and electronics equipment operating in its environment properly and without a negative effect on the environment.

Early work in “RFI” or Radio Frequency Interference started in the 1930s, primarily with military systems and notably airplanes. The installation of radio equipment in early aircraft gave rise to noise problems in the radio receivers from ignition sources (spark plug noise) and related pulse and broadband interference sources, such as precipitation static (so-called “P-Static”). Other concerns, which continue today, include protection against lightning-induced energy which can threaten airborne, ground and sea-based equipment.

View more about EMC

EMC Testing Services

Our Electromagnetic Compatibility (EMC) Testing labs Feature:

  • Automated measurements and data collection and reporting
  • Flexible on-site measurements: remote locations, suburban/urban locations
  • Discreet measurement techniques: extended and long-term measurements
  • Broad and narrow band measurements from DC-40 GHz
  • Magnetic field measurements: DC-30 MHz
  • Electric field measurements: 100 Hz — 40 GHz
  • Measurements per ANSI C95.1: Radiation Hazards
  • EMC Test plan preparation
  • Engineering propagation testing and studies
  • Design assistance and review

Site Surveys

Reduce interference potential by knowing your electromagnetic environment. Radio frequency measurements of potential interference at your installation can help reduce problems in sensitive installations (i.e., medical devices, pace makers, etc.) To make these determinations, very specific measurements must be taken on location. And you probably needed it done yesterday.

On-Site Testing for Compliance

On-site testing, sometime referred to in situ testing is an option that is often used when performing equipment evaluation at a customer location, factory or other non-laboratory test venue. There are several reasons to perform product compliance testing at specific location, rather than at a test laboratory. A major reason is that the equipment may be physically too large for a test laboratory. The other reason is that special support equipment or infrastructure is needed to operate the equipment. For example, the electricity supply may have specific voltage or amperage requirements that cannot be accommodated in the laboratory. Other operational needs may include mechanical services such as air-handling, chemical requirements, other support equipment. Other reasons may include security issues or other special access issues relating to sensitive equipment and/or intellectual property. The testing may cover the various EMC, Safety and Machinery requirements and these are well-used methodology. View more information about our On-Site Testing Services.

We can help.

Washington Laboratories provides radio frequency measurements to Personal Communications Services and Cellular providers. We are the single resource for fast, accurate and responsive RF measurements from DC to 40 GHz.

Standards and References

Did You Know? EMI/EMC

Did you know that ESD neutralization should be used during test of ungrounded equipment?

IEC 61000-4-2 calls for neutralizing the test article for ungrounded equipment where a discharge event fails to occur.  This process is based on the premise that a residual charge is present when the next discharge trial is applied and the residual charge adds to the subsequent event voltage.  This could result in testing at an unknown value potentially higher that the specified voltage.  The residual charge will dissipate over time but it could take several seconds for complete neutralization especially if testing in a low humidity environment.

To meet the standard, testing should include a neutralization process to conform to the test standard.   This is accomplished by using a conductive cloth or brush through a resistive connection to the ESD simulator ground reference.

For more information contact us.

Article Reference ID: DYK00009

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