Amazon.com Widgets

The Basics of Electrical Interference



Home | Glossary | Books | Links/Resources
EMC Testing | Environmental Testing | Vibration Testing

Electrical interference is the disturbance to the normal or expected operation of electrical or electronic devices, equipment, and systems. Electrical interference is sometimes called radio-frequency interference (RFI) or electromagnetic interference (EMI). Electrical noise is broader term that included those phenomena that are generally termed electrical interference, but also includes naturally-occurring currents or voltages that are more or less continuous and can't be completely eliminated.

Electrical interference originates from one or more of the following: transmitters such as those used for broadcast, communication, radar, and navigation; artificial incidental emission sources such as sparking of motor brushes, automotive ignition, and fluorescent lamps; and natural phenomena such as lightning and electrostatic discharges. The interference emissions may be radiated through space or conducted along the paths of electrical wires in power lines and signal cables.



There are several means of mitigating electrical interference, including grounding, bonding, shielding, filtering, and transient control. There are two major approaches. One is to reduce radiation from boxes, cabinets, racks, and consoles by the design of multilayer printed-circuit boards and backplanes, or to use metal or metallized plastic cases with EMI-protective apertures. The other involves reduction of radiation to or from the interconnecting cable by using filter pin connectors or foil-wrap shields terminated with complete coverage by the connector backshell at the respective box bulkhead.

top of page



Home | Glossary | Books | Links/Resources
EMC Testing | Environmental Testing | Vibration Testing

Updated: Friday, 2007-11-16 17:27 PST