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Confused with the difference between EMI and EMC? Luckily enough for you, Ideal power have you covered! - Idealpower
26th February 2020

Confused with the difference between EMI and EMC? Luckily enough for you, Ideal power have you covered!

EMI (electromagnetic interference) and EMC (Electromagnetic compatibly); are related in many ways which is why there is often confusion between them when it comes to regulatory testing of electronic components and consumer goods.

What is EMI?

EMI is an electromagnetic energy that interferes with components and the functioning of electronic devices. EMI can come in the form of both naturally occurring and from another electronic device or electrical system.

Naturally occurring example of EMI:

EMI can be the result of manmade or natural occurrences. For example, your TV Signal dish will emit radiation signal from a natural occurrence such as a lightning surge.

Electronic device or electrical system example of EMI:

An example of Electronic devices affecting EMI is when a Passenger is on a flight and the cabin crew ask all passengers to switch off their mobile phone and laptop devices. The reason for this is because the radiation emitted by the device will disturb the aeroplanes high frequency operating communication network equipment during the take-off and landing process, meaning that signal sent from the pilot to air traffic control will be interrupted because of the noise that is generated by your electrical devices.

In summary, EMI is a result of electric or magnetic fields acting on a device causing it to malfunction. It is rare for electronics to operate in isolation, products are generally engineered to function in the presence of some amount of EMI. This is particularly important in military-grade and avionics equipment, as well as devices requiring superior reliability in all situations.

What is EMC?

EMC is a measure of a devices ability to operate as intended in its shared operating environment, whilst not affecting other equipment within the same environment. A form of testing that takes place to measure how a device will react when exposed to EMC is called Immunity testing. A test that measures the amount of EMI generated by a devices internal electrical system is called Emission testing.

During the design phase of a project these two aspects of EMC need to be thought through carefully, because if they are not properly considered then a number of consequences could occur, such as safety risks, data loss and product failure. This is where we come into play, at Ideal Power we will source Power supplies that have gone through vigorous testing to ensure that your products comply with the latest standards.

Below is an example of EMC:


The radiation emitted by the mobile phone, should not interfere or disturb the other two devices.

In the same way that the other devices should not disturb the mobile phone device or signal.

In Summary, EMC is described by how well a device can function in its environment without causing any unwanted effects to the surrounding equipment. Your device should not emit radiation, or the radiation emitted by other devices should not cause malfunction of your device.

How do I know if my products meet these standards?

If you are not sure on whether your products comply with the latest standards, please do not hesitate to contact us. Through our expert knowledge, we will help you source the best power supply solution for your needs.



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