EMI/EMC Testing for Small Sats

  • Posted by doEEEt Media Group
  • On June 2, 2021
  • 0

EMI/EMC testing is intended to ensure that no electromagnetic interference will exist between:  

  • The launcher and the satellite 
  • The satellite and the GSE 
  • Different satellites in the same launcher  
  • Different pieces of equipment with a given satellite

EMI/EMC Test Flow

EMI/EMC testing consists of 5 kinds of tests:  

  • Radiated emissions: Radiated emissions from the EUT are not more than a given level 
  • Radiated immunity: The EUT is immune to radiated emissions from the environment 
  • Conducted emission: Conducted emission is below a given level. In the case of a satellite, this refers to intra-satellite emissions from one subsystem to another.   
  • Conducted immunity: A given subsystem is immune to emissions from other subsystems.  
  • Self immunity: All subsystems working simultaneously do not produce interference with each other.  

EMI Test: Electromagnetic interference

EMI/EMC testing indicates to engineers whether a device is compatible with its electromagnetic environment and determines whether it will produce electromagnetic interference, or EMI, in real-world situations.

EMC test: Electromagnetic Compatibility test equipment

Electromagnetic Compatibility (EMC) tests are performed in an anechoic chamber for radiated emission/immunity (to avoid reflections) and using grounded planes (for conducted emission/immunity).  

An anechoic chamber is a room designed to absorb reflections of either sound or electromagnetic waves completely. They are also often isolated from waves entering their surroundings. This combination means that a person or detector exclusively hears direct sounds (no reverberant ), simulating being inside an infinitely large room. Electromagnetic Compatibility (EMC) testing of flight model needs cleanliness level ISO 8.  

ISO 8 is the least clean cleanroom classification. A cleanroom must have less than 35,200,000 particles/m3 particles > 0.5 µm and 20 HEPA filtered air changes per hour.  

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