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Developing Immunity Testing to Cover Intermodulation
Existing immunity test methods can be developed to cost-effectively provide greater “coverage” of real-world electromagnetic environments, and such techniques are now needed to aid effective risk management of electromagnetic compatibility
(EMC) because of the increasing automation of society and industry. The reliability of electronic technologies (including their software and firmware) becomes critical when the consequences of errors, malfunctions or other types of failure include significant financial loss, mission loss, loss of security, or harm to people, domestic animals or property (known as “functional safety”).
Electromagnetic interference (EMI) can be a cause of unreliability in all electronic technologies, so EMC must be taken into account when the risks caused by malfunctioning electronics need to be controlled. Unfortunately, it is not practicable to achieve the levels of confidence required for critical systems, over their entire lifetime, by EMC testing alone – no matter by how much the test level is increased above the maximum levels obtaining in the environment. A variety of additional verification and validation techniques are required. The subject of this paper is developing existing radiated and conducted radio-frequency immunity test methods to cover real-life possibilities for intermodulation, that at the time of writing
are ignored by almost all standardized test methods.
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