Things You Should Know About EMC Compliance For Wireless Devices
Are you planning to introduce a new wireless product into the market? Are you aware of the importance of proper EMC testing for wireless products? If you know anything about EMC testing, you would know that all electronic devices are capable of generating electromagnetic interference. This is why every single device introduced to the market needs to meet appropriate standards for respective international as well as local markets.
For example, all the approved devices in Europe are required to carry CE marking whereas, in Australia, products are required to carry RCM marking. Some of the common standards for wireless devices in Australia include ACMA SRD 2014, AS/NZS 4415, AS/NZS 4268, RSM SRD and various others.
Common Wireless Technologies
For wireless devices, some of the most common radio technologies for which EMC testing is required include:
Wi-Fi devices 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz
Bluetooth 2.4 GHz
Short-range devices such as remote controls as well as garage door openers
Certification For Wireless Devices In Australia And New Zealand
The regulatory compliance RCM mark was created in 2013 and it replaced the A-Tick and C – Tick certification programs. It offers a more integrated approach to wireless device certification. A product with an RCM mark means that it is completely safe to use and meets the required standards of product safety as well as performance. There are 3 classification levels under the RCM mark with the highest risk items being labelled Level 3 and the lowest risk items being labelled Level 1.
As far as the process of obtaining an RCM mark is concerned, it is similar to other international certification programs. The first thing you need to do is determine the right labelling notice for your product and the standards required for that particular product. As far as EMC compliance for wireless devices is concerned, it needs to be demonstrated through technical documentation and test results.
Once EMC testing is done and the required documentation is compiled, a Declaration of Conformity is signed. In Australia and New Zealand, the law requires a local representative to sign off on the Declaration of Conformity before a product is allowed to be introduced into the market. Once all these requirements have been met, manufacturers are free to register the product with the Electrical Equipment Safety System database (ACMA) and this is when the RCM mark is affixed to the product.
As far as the actual wireless testing is concerned, it needs to be demonstrated that the device being tested is able to operate in the right manner and uses the applicable wireless protocols. In addition, it also needs to demonstrate that the device uses the right wireless frequency during operation.
Why Experts Recommend Pre-compliance Testing For Wireless Products
EMC testing is an expensive process. It costs a lot of money to hire the services of an accredited lab in order to get the required certification. If a product fails compliance testing, the product needs to go back to the drawing board and the whole process has to begin again. Needless to say, it not only delays the launch of the product but a lot of money also needs to be spent in order to rectify the design mistakes to make the product compliant with the necessary standards.
Pre-compliance testing simply means that a product is tested regularly during the design stage to ensure that it passes the final compliance testing without any issues. Fixing design mistakes during the early stages of the process is much cheaper compared to the cost of redesign and repeated compliance testing.
Overall, the world is increasingly going wireless. Today, you can find dozens of wireless products in every household and all those products need to be compliant with the relevant standards. For wireless products, there are specific standards that need to be met. For the products to be sold in Australia and New Zealand, the RCM mark is the standard that needs to be affixed before a product can be launched into the market. This is why it is recommended to utilise the services of an expert in EMC testing to help designers understand EMC compliance requirements and ensure compliance without costly redesign and other issues.
Compliance Engineering offers accredited testing services for a broad range of products in particular compliance with EMC regulations in Australia. We provide the highest standard of environmental testing that measures the performance of specific products under particular environmental conditions.
Please call us today at Compliance Engineering on + 61 3 9763 3079 or leave an enquiry.