EMC Step by Step
Explains in simple terms what really matters.
Whether a small start-up, medium-sized company or large corporation, every manufacturer has to go through the EMC qualification process with the products. Regardless of whether your product is used for public or military applications or for transportation over the roads, water or air. The basic qualification process remains the same.
Below is a step-by-step guide on how you can safely and successfully go through this process. We support you at all times in every step.
Dipl.-Ing. (FH) Dennis Moschik
Phone: +49 4103 18886 44
Determine as soon as possible, in which applications your product will be used. The following questions should be answered:
In which countries / economic zones the product should be sold?
For which applications the product is used?
- Public (commercial or industrial environments)
- Military (which nationalities)
Determines the purpose and location of your product. Depending on the standard to be used, this has an influence on the limit lines, test immunity level and test scope. Ask yourself how and where the product is used. In this context, the question “where” refers to a specific installation location in a larger system and the question “how” to the specific operation and its users.
Figure out the requirements that apply to your product. Does your customer already write standards in the specification of requirements? Is a specific product standard for your device or system defined? If necessary, clarify additional requirements for the successful acceptance with your customer. The earlier you define clear requirements, the easier it is for your development team to take them into account during implementation.
Provide your development team with the necessary EMC specifications at an early stage. As a result, fundamental design errors can be avoided. EMC pre compliance tests are cost efficient during the design phase, which later generate very high costs and time expenditure if the final EMC tests failed.
In the beginning, it is not easy to identify the right requirements or standards, especially for new developments. Contact us, we will help you to identify the right documents.
Write an EMC test plan as soon as possible. This helps you to define acceptance criteria for your customers. You also determine how the operating state is established during the emission and immunity tests. You should answer the following questions when preparing the test plan:
- Which standards should be applied?
- Are the issues of the standards up-to-date?
- Which tests must be used for the qualification?
- What is the setup during the tests?
- Are the complete functional performance and interfaces considered in the defined setup and operating mode?
- How are all interfaces connected, if possible?
- What is the operating state for the emission tests?
- What is the operating status for the immunity tests?
- How can the operating mode and performance be monitored during the tests?
- Do I have to develop additional firmware or software for test operation modes?
- Do we need additional cables (length) or test adapters?
- How do we terminate the interfaces, passively or with real active loads?
- Is there a test item that can be tested and the state of construction can be clearly identified?
Contact us, we have templates to simplify and accelerate your EMC test plan preperation. Alternatively, we can also work with you to create an EMC test plan.Depending on the industry, different names are used for an EMC test plan: e.g. EMC Test Plan, Qualification Test Procedure (QTP),Qualification Test Plan (QTP), EMC Test Specification or EMC Test Instruction.
Contact us for an offer in time, even if not all details in the test plan or the requirements have been clarified. In this phase we can already send you a rough estimate of the effort and verify the documents you have already prepared.
Prepare a request for quotation for all EMC tests to be carried out. If you have not created a test plan, this is no problem if you have a simple test item. You define the most important items from step 4 quickly and easily with your contact person.
After the costs and the test effort have been determined, the test date is set by mutual agreement.
The day of the exam. You don't have to be present for simple test setups, but you are always welcome. In the case of more complex test setups or operating states, your presence is recommended in order to guarantee an efficient and fast test sequence.
Ideally and with good preparation, the tests run to the end without any further problems and the results are passed.
Despite good preparation, an test can always lead to problems. This is not a cause for despair. At this point you benefit from the experience of our test engineers. Together with you and your developers, we try to work out a solution quickly and always with the target of passed tests in mind. To solve the problem, we usually distinguish 3 cases:
- 1. A quick and simple modification leads to success and the tests can be continued.
- 2. After the successful modification, the test starts from the beginning with the changed state of construction. Every modification will be documented in detail.
- 3. The test is canceled. The modifications are too extensive and must first be adapted for series production.
After the successful completion of all necessary tests, we will create an EMC test report. This is electronically signed and made available for you to download in PDF format from our MTN-Secure-Cloud. Please read the report carefully. In particular, the unambiguous designation of the test item should be correct. If you notice any errors in the report, send us an email with a reference to the relevant position in the report. We will correct it immediately and provide you with a new version including a comprehensible revision history.
Our reports normally contain all the content required by DIN EN ISO / IEC 17025. The following is the most important content:
- Table of contents with clickable links within the PDF file
- Name and address of the laboratory, client and manufacturer
- Test location and participants
- Unambiguous designation of the test item
- Name, description and issue of all applicable documents (e.g. test plan, standards, guidelines)
- Description of the test item including the state of construction, cables and peripherals
- Description of the used operating states during tests
- Date of document preparation and tests performed
- List of test equipment used and calibration date
- Test results (diagrams, tables, etc.)
- Documentation of the test setups with photos (if applicable)
- If necessary, a statement of conformity
- Environmental conditions (if applicable or necessary)
- If applicable, information on measurement uncertainty
- Opinions and interpretations if necessary
The report has the final version and you can declare the conformity for your product according to the documented standards. You can find out which standards these are on the cover sheet in the EMC test report. There is also a table in the report of all the standards used, including the version number.
The declaration of conformity by the manufacturer is colloquially referred to as a “CE certificate”. The creation of this document is in the responsibility of the manufacturer (distributor) and does not require approval. Our test report verifiably ensures that all necessary requirements have been met by the device under test. The CE marking on the product is carried out by the manufacturer himself.
Every manufacturer or distributor is obliged to apply the current standards. So check at regular intervals whether the standard issues mentioned in your declaration of conformity have been replaced. Furthermore, checks whether new components due to discontinuations or other changes in production could affect your conformity. Checks whether a new test is required due to the changes in the standards or the construction status. If you are unsure about this step, please contact us.