EMC Consultants: What to Look For in a Service

If you're looking for an EMC consulting service (rather than an EMC testing service), what features should you look for?

Here are a some of the most important things such a service should be willing to offer:

  • EMC risk assessments/risk analysis
  • Practical EMC problem solving
  • EMC legislation
  • Planning EMC management strategies
  • Regulatory issues in US and worldwide
  • Contractual specifications
  • RF engineering and design techniques
  • Shielding effectiveness consultation
  • Development of unique (ad hoc) measurement techniques
  • Instrumentation and software development
  • EM computational modeling

If EM interferences are suspected in a particular environment, well-designed EMC modeling tools may be used to:

  • Predict the EM risks to electronic equipment, human health and the electromagnetic environment
  • Evaluate the EM performance of different designs without creating prototypes
  • Evaluate the EM performance of a design in many different electromagnetic environments

Modeling is used in two types of scenarios:

  • An EMC test scenario such as a radiated emissions or radiated immunity test is modeled and the field at an appropriate test distance is calculated. This type of modeling is often undertaken on an intentional transmitter to assess the likelihood of disturbance to neighboring electronic equipment or the threat to human safety. (See this document for more details).

  • Long parallel runs of cable can lead to cross-talk (the signal from one cable interfering with the other). This can lead to unexpectedly high voltages occurring on the "victim" cable. An example of this when 25kV AC feeder cables used to supply power to trains. Line-side (low-voltage) cables used for telephony and signaling purposes can have significant voltages induced on them. The primary design objective in this scenario is to limit the induced voltages on line side cables to below 60V AC.

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Also see: EMC Testing: What to Look For in a Service

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Updated: Tuesday, 2008-08-19 17:09 PST