ELECTROMAGNETIC COMPATIBILITY (EMC) By ZULFIQAR MIRANI

Electromagnetic Compatibility ( EMC ) essentially ensures proper working of an electrical system when it is placed in an electromagnetic environment shared by other electrical systems. This means that conducted or radiated emissions from an electrical system are kept within specified limits so that they may not degrade the performance of any other electrical system placed in the same environment. In addition to this, the electrical system must immune enough to the conducted or radiated emissions generated by other electrical systems. ELECTROMAGNETIC INTERFERENCE (EMI) Electromagnetic interference consists of any unwanted, spurious, conducted and /or radiated signal of electrical origin that can cause unacceptable degradation of system or an equipment performance. The effects of EMI can range from minor nuisance to catastrophic consequences. Appearance of ghosts or snow on TV screen, cross talk in telephones, buzzing of a car radio while driving under a high tension transmission line are examples of minor nuisance. EMI can also lead to serious consequences, such as, malfunctioning of medical equipments while monitoring condition of patients, radio interference in aircrafts communication system, firing of missile due un-warranted activation of its explosive device etc. Basic elements of an EMI situation There are three essential elements of an EMI situation; they are: 1. 2. 3. 1. EMI sources EMI receptors Coupling paths. Source of EMI

Any device or apparatus that transmits, distributes, processes, or otherwise utilizes any form of electrical energy can be a source of EMI. EMI sources can be classified as:  conducted or radiated,  natural or man made, and  intentional or unintentional

EMI signals, those conducted via electrical conducting paths are wires and ground planes, whereas radiated EMI signals have the form of electromagnetic waves transmitted through free space from source to receptor. Natural EMI sources are those associated with natural phenomenon like lighting, radiation from galactic and cosmic sources, whereas man-made sources include all electrical systems like electronic communication, power lines etc. Electrical systems whose primary function depends upon radiated emissions are called intentional radiators (for example: communication , navigation and radar system) where as unintentional radiators are those systems which radiate radio frequency signals but whose primary function is not to generate these signals. 2. EMI Receptors

The term receptor refers to the generic class of devices, equipment and/ or system that, when exposed to EMI, either malfunction or degrade performance. These EMI receptors may be natural or man-made. Natural receptors include humans, animals & plants. Intense EM fields can damage the organic molecules of the body by heating. All electrical system are example of man made receptors. 3. Coupling paths

There are four type of coupling paths may exist between an emitter and a receptor. They are: i. ii. iii. iv. Common Impedance Coupling Capacitive Coupling Inductive Coupling Radiation Coupling

INTERSYSTEM EMI CONTROL TECHNIQUES In order to control the intersystem EMI Techniques like frequency management, time management, location management, direction management and shielding can be used. Methods like filtering, shielding, proper wiring and grounding can be adopted. INTRASYSTEM EMI CONTROL TECHNIQUES Methods like filtering shielding, proper wiring and grounding can be adopted. INTERFERENCE In practical measurements electrical signals from the measured to measuring instrument

may be effected by a number of forms of interference. These interference are due to the entrance of unwanted signals from the unrelated electrical circuits and fields into measuring system. Protection of measuring systems from these interference is called screening. The Five major types of external interference signals are: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. Capacitive (or electrical coupled) interference Inductive (or magnetically coupled) interference Electromagnetic interference (radiation coupling) Conductively coupled interference Ground loop interference

Capacitive (or Electrical Coupled) Interference Although unconnected physically, nearby conductors are coupled electrically by the capacitance between them (in the same way that the parallel plates of a capacitor are coupled). In measuring system, the object of capacitive interference is low level signal transducer and low level signal carrying conductor. The sources of capacitive interference are conductors that have large varying voltage, typically with little or no current flow. Inductive Interference Inductive interference stems from electromagnetic fields that are associate with current carrying conductor. The current creates a magnetic field in the space surrounding in the space. If the current changes with time the magnetic field will also change. If there is closed conducing path (loop) near by, the magnetic field that intercepts the loop will cause a current to be induced and flow around the loop. The magnitude of induced current will depends on the strength of the magnetic field, the frequency of its variation, and area of the loop. In addition, the current will depend on the resistance of the loop. If the resistance of the loop is high, the magnetic field will induce only insignificant small currents. Inductively coupled interference can cause problems in high-impedance measuring setups. If low impedance loop is formed by a shield conductor and a portion of the ground plane (i.e if the shield conductor is connected to ground at two different points), large currents can be induced in this path. Electromagnetic Interference At high frequencies, a part of the energy associated with the fluctuating current or charge in a conductor is radiated away from it in the form of electromagnetic radiation. This phenomenon is specially used to generate radio waves for communication and radar

application. However, it has become common parlance to refer to any EM waves that have frequencies comparable to radio or radar waves as radio frequency (RF) waves, whether they are actually signals from radio or radar transmitter or not. Besides radio waves, there are many other sources (both manufactured and natural) that produce RF signals. How ever, in measurement system, all types of RF signals are considered to be sources of unwanted EM interference as a result, sensitive circuit must be protected from all RF signals no matter what their source might be. Conductively Coupled Interference Interference can also be caused by electrical fluctuations or signals that originate in other electrical devices connected in the same circuit as the measuring instrument. Since such interference signals are coupled to the measurement circuits directly through electrical conductors (that is the wires or cables of the circuit), such interference is known as conductively coupled interference. Three of the most common causes of conductively coupled interference in measurement systems are: i. The presence of a common impedance ground path in the measurement system. ii. Conductively coupled interference introduces into the system through the power transformers of the measurement instrument. iii. Power supplies that are incorrectly connected to parallel loads. Ground Loop Interference Ground loop interference are frequent and serious source of problems in many electronic measurement systems. Ground loops are closed electrical paths in which the section of the path consist of the ground wires of a system and ground plane. Ground loops are created when ever the ground conductor of an electrical system is connected to the ground plane at different points. Since the ground wires of most systems and the ground plane are actually low impedance conducting paths, ground loops as a whole are paths of low impedance.