Where Does EMI and RFI Come From?

Where Does EMI and RFI Come From?

Our material experts help customers fabricate EMI and RFI shields for their products that may be affected by outside, unwanted frequencies. These shields are necessary in many products today due to the millions of waves constantly moving through the air.

But where do these electrical interferences come from? The sources of EMI and RFI can dictate the damage they cause and the products at risk.

What is EMI and RFI?

EMI stands for electromagnetic interference, which is any electrical disturbance that causes performance failure in a component. RFI is radio frequency interference and occurs from electrical disturbance within the radio frequency spectrum. EMI and RFI affect electrical components by induction, coupling or conduction.

Where can EMI and RFI come from?

The sources of EMI and RFI can be either naturally occurring or man-made. Almost any electrical source has the ability to disrupt the electrical components of a product around it, though the degree to which can vary greatly.

Natural sources

  • Lightning
  • Solar flares and radiation
  • Dust and snow storms
  • Atmospheric electrical storms (the cause of the Northern and Southern Lights)

Man-made sources

Industrial:

  • Electric motors and generators
  • Power supplies
  • Cellular networks
  • Transmitters
  • Transformers

Home goods:

  • Electric blankets
  • Electric bug killers
  • Baby monitors
  • Microwaves
  • Heaters
  • Lamps
  • Wi-Fi and Bluetooth devicesbluetooth headset

What damage can EMI and RFI cause?

Electrical interference can range from temporary, slightly bothersome obstruction to permanent and costly damage. The impact can depend on environment, the product’s construction, and duration of interference.

  • Mobile phones can lose signal, resulting in minor annoyance
  • Hard drives can crash, resulting in data loss
  • Pacemakers can fail, resulting in death
  • Military equipment can lose power, resulting in loss of power

Our custom EMI and RFI shields

Our customers often need unique interference shielding to keep their products continually working. We fabricate EMI and RFI shielding from:

  • Foil tapes
  • Knitted mesh
  • Conductive rubber
  • Conductive adhesive tapes (PSAs)
  • Ferrite
  • Mu metal
  • Mesh/elastomer
  • Fabric/foam

Contact us to place an order for your EMI and RFI shielding or if you have any questions about how interference shielding can help your equipment run well.

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