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RFI, EMI, and ESD

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Transcript

You're going to run into a few questions that might require you to know the difference between electromagnetic interference versus radio frequency interference versus electrostatic discharge, better known as EMI RF, phi and ESD. So let's just take a moment and make sure we're comfortable with all three of these. Let's start with electromagnetic interference. Just about every electronic device out there emits some form of radiation. Now this radiation can be in the radio range, it could possibly be in the infrared, who knows. But the problem is, is that they emit radiation.

And this can cause problems generically, we call all this electromagnetic interference when it's interfering with somebody else. Now, if it's only in the radio range, like it with this wireless access point, in that case, we call it radio frequency interference. The bottom line is is that we need to be able to do something about it. Number one, we isolate. We try to move this stuff away from The things that it's causing the interference from. The second thing we're going to do is we're going to shield our devices.

So for example, here's a piece of shielded Ethernet cable that's designed to protect us from EMI and RFID. Equally, we can do separate circuits. in a lot of situations, we'll actually see, for example, this electric motor, which has its own separate electric current, which helps to protect everybody else from EMI. Now, EMI and RFID are based on radiation. However, I want to talk about one more thing that's based on good old electricity and that's electrostatic discharge. Everything on Earth has some amount of electrical charge.

Now we've all felt this. Anybody who's walked up to a doorknob on a dry day wearing a pair of silk pajamas while petting their cat has definitely felt a little bit of electrostatic discharge. Now while this is an inconvenience for humans, If we do the exact same thing to a piece of electronics, it can absolutely destroy it. So what we need to do is protect ourselves from ESD. Number one, we try to keep everything at the same potential. Here's a typical ESD wrist strap.

The whole idea behind using this device is we stamped one end into the workpiece. And then we keep the other part on our wrist. That way we stay at the same potential. Also, just about any form of electronic device. For example, this USB thumb drive has built in anti ESD circuitry to protect it in case we do get a little bit of a charge. The important thing is that you recognize the difference between EMI versus RF fi versus ESD.

And also make sure you understand the security features we can do to keep our availability of our electronic equipment really high.

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