electro magnetic compatibility EMC testing solutions vicom

Making conducted and radiated emissions measurements

Did you know that 50% of projects fail EMI/EMC testing the first time? Intertek Testing Services reports that roughly half of products fail the initial EMC test due to a failure to apply EMC principles, lack of EMC/EMI knowledge, incorrect applications of EMC regulations, unpredicted interactions among circuit elements, or incorporation of non-compliant modules or subassemblies into the final product.

Performing pre-compliance testing greatly improves the probability of a successful first pass of full EMI compliance testing, saving you time and thousands of dollars. Companies designing products for medical, automotive, military and even multimedia applications, can benefit from investing in a pre-compliance test setup. This page discusses how adding pre-compliance testing to your product development process can accelerate product development and reduce project costs. Learn more about the basics of EMC/EMI testing.

Learn about the basics of EMC/EMI testing



Workbench Troubleshooting EMC Emissions (Volume 2) - Kenneth Wyatt

     Ken Wyatt Workbench Troubleshooting EMC Emissions (Volume 2)

Simple Techniques for Radiated and Conducted Emissions Troubleshooting and Pre-Compliance Testing (EMC Troubleshooting Series) Why Read This Book? With all the many pressures you have as a product designer, does radiated or conducted emissions always seems like a stumbling block to delaying product sales? Are you continually cycling between design/fixing - running to the compliance test lab - failing again - and back to applying more fixes? Wondering how to attack these issues earlier in the design cycle? Then this is the book for you!

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Benefits of pre-compliance testing

Good EMC design techniques are not too difficult to implement if they are introduced at the earliest stages of design. If modifications need to be made later in the design to meet EMC requirements, it becomes much harder.  

EMC design process image

If you’re developing a product, you’re making financial, time, and sometimes, an emotional investment in getting the product to market. The last thing you want is to get held up by compliance testing failures. Incorporating a pre-compliance solution into your work processes provides numerous benefits, including:

  • Early identification of potential EMI/EMC issues that may delay time-to-market and increase development costs
  • Reduction of EMI/EMC related costs
  • Increased confidence in your product before you take it to the test house
  • Immediate feedback on the impact of design changes
  • Flexibility to test on your schedule




Take the mysteries out of EMI/EMC test setup

EMI/EMC pre-compliance testing doesn’t have to be hard or excessively time consuming. Based on customer feedback, Tektronix developed next-generation software with ease of use and functionality in mind, to provide pre-compliance testing for radiated and conducted measurements. Setting up EMI/EMC pre-compliance testing starts with SignalVu-PC. This latest version of SignalVu-PC now comes with an additional option called EMCVu. EMCVu features an easy-to-use setup wizard, built-in standards and accessory setup with push-button selection capabilities. Whether you are setting up an Open-Air Test Site (OATS), or testing in your lab, EMCVu streamlines the capture and removal of ambient noise from your measurements to increase the accuracy of your pre-compliance tests without an anechoic chamber. To learn more about using EMCVu with real time spectrum analyzers and accessories to perform pre-compliance tests for radiated and conducted emissions, download the application note here.

If you’re interested in trying a free 30-day trial of EMCVu, please click on the button below.

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Troubleshooting tips to speed up debut work

Before you invest the time and money in final product certification testing, you want confidence that your device is ready to go to the test house. When you run into a problem, you want the right tools that allow you to focus on problem areas quickly, identify the cause and take steps to remediate without incurring costly delays. To efficiently debug, look for a solution that lets you quickly identify areas of concern and provides the level of signal insight that captures intermittent offenders. This is delivered by a combination of hardware and software. Some of capabilities you should look for in your software solution include:

  • Quasi-Peak detector which lets you bypass non-failures and zero in on frequencies of interest.
  • Harmonic Check which allows you to test only specific harmonics and find where those emissions come from on a board using a near field probe.
  • Harmonic Markers which enables finding emissions at harmonics of a known frequency.
  • Multiple Traces allowing you to compare the Device Under Test (DUT) to Ambient Noise, previous iterations of a Device, etc.
  • Automated or manual multi-failure re-measurement, allowing you to determine if a failure is intermittent or reoccurring.
  • Report multiple measurements in multiple formats in the same user configurable report.

With hardware, Real-Time Spectrum Analyzers make EMI debug much easier. Some of the benefits provided by a real-time spectrum analyzer include:

  • The ability to capture transient and intermittent signals.
  • The ability to debug multiple sources at the same frequency.
  • Instantaneous feedback – traditional swept spectrum analyzers sweeps can take longer and result in failure in capturing important signals.

To learn more on how to use our Real-Time Spectrum Analyzers for emissions pre-compliance testing on our blog here. Additional information on troubleshooting techniques are available in the “Practical EMI Troubleshooting” application note that you can download by clicking on the button below.




A complete pre-compliance solution

To affordably speed you on your way, Tektronix offers a complete EMI/EMC pre-compliance testing solution including software, spectrum analyzers, accessories and EMC near-field probes.


EMC Software

Tektronix EMI/EMC pre-compliance solution starts with SignalVu-PC with EMCVu software. As a plug-in to SignalVu-PC, EMCVu provides a single user interface for all your pre-compliance needs.


Spectrum Analyzers 

To provide fast, accurate measurements to assist you in finding EMI/EMC issues quickly, Tektronix offers a full line of affordable Real-Time Spectrum Analyzers. Real-Time Spectrum analyzers provide significant advantages over traditional swept enabling you to capture infrequent EMI bursts.

Download EMI/EMC Test Sheet







Video - EMCVu, an all-in-one EMI/EMC pre-compliance software solution

Engineers now have a fast, easy, accurate and affordable way to determine if your new product designs are ready to submit to the test house. This video covers new EMCVu features, including: push button support for multiple standards, automated multiple measurement/multiple format reporting, ambient noise calibration and comparison, harmonic markers and faster scans using peak detector and spot measurements with quasi-peak and average detector failures.

Video - Full EMI Compliance Chamber vs Tektronix Spectrum Analyzer

In this video we compare EMI compliance results obtained using a full Compliance Receiver set-up versus a low-cost approach using a Tektronix RSA Spectrum Analyzer. You’ll see how these results correlate for unintentional radiator emissions tests and a CISPR 11 EMI conducted emissions tests in and out of the EMI chamber. Performing a pre-compliance test using the RSA Spectrum Analyzer series can assist you in detecting problems that you can address prior to a compliance test, saving you time and money by ensuring you pass expensive compliance tests the first time.


Low Cost EMI Pre-compliance Testing using a Spectrum Analyzer

This application note describes how you can use a general-purpose spectrum analyzer to perform EMI pre-compliance checks for radiated emissions and conducted emissions, to help identify major issues before sending your design to a compliance lab.

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 Tek Application Note 37A-60141

EMI Troubleshooting with the Latest-Generation Oscilloscopes

EMI/EMC regulations help to ensure reliable operation and safety for users of electrical and electronic equipment. Regulations limit the allowable radiated emissions, and to keep their products within these limits, designers invest significant time and effort. This application note describes techniques that may be used to determine the source of unwanted emissions, especially after an out-of-limits condition has been identified through formal testing or pre-compliance testing.

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 Tek Application Note 48W-61644

Troubleshooting ESD Failures Using an Oscilloscope

This Application Note is intended to help designers learn troubleshooting techniques for ESD compliance failures. It covers some basic theory on ESD, describes a basic testing system for ESD troubleshooting, including an H-field probe, oscilloscope and ESD simulator and explains how to make measurements and trace ESD current paths in a device under test.

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 Tek Application Note 48W-73759

Verifying ESD Simulator Performance Using an Oscilloscope

This application note is intended to help designers verify the shape of current pulses from ESD simulators prior to compliance or precompliance testing. it covers some basic theory on ESD, describes a basic testing system for ESD simulators with an oscilloscope and explains how to verify pulses for contact dischargetesting and air discharge testing.

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 Tek Application Note 48W-73760