For automotive manufacturer’s or OEMs selling to automotive companies or marketing directly to consumers, EMC testing in all phases of design and development will be critical. In most vehicles today, there are approximately 65 different electronic modules that may be producing electromagnetic fields or be susceptible to these fields.
In addition, there any number of sources that may be present outside of the vehicle to consider as well. This could include power transformers, other vehicles, transmitters and any number of devices that are emitting some form of radio frequency.
Ensuring that internal and external sources of radio frequency emissions won’t interfere with the safe operation of the vehicle or impact the electronic components is all part of automotive EMC test procedures.
What to Consider
Not all automotive EMC test procedures are the same. There are different standards required based on the market where the vehicle will be sold, the type of vehicle and even the specific types of electronics that will be present on the vehicle, equipment or machine.
Even different countries will have different requirements, so knowing the specific parameters and testing standards will be critical, before starting the test. For vehicles, a written EMC testing plan will be required, typically prepared by the engineering team.
Additionally, it will be essential to fully understand all of the automotive EMC test procedures that must be completed for the vehicle or component. This can include everything from testing for the protection of onboard or off-board receivers as well testing all-electric assemblies that may have an impact on any aspect of vehicle operation and safety.
Completing automotive EMC testing in-house is often the ideal situation. This allows your engineers to work directly with the testing and in obtaining the results. With this more hands-on approach, as to sending the component off to a third-party for testing, modifications and design enhancements can be streamlined to address any areas where the EMC testing is demonstrating an RF problem in the system or the component.