Turnkey transportable reverberation chamber for EMC emission and immunity testing

August 24, 2012 // By Julien Happich
Teseq's two new reverberation chambers, models RVC XS and 2XS are modern EMC test environments that provide an alternative to semi- or full anechoic rooms (SAR/FAR), open area test sites (OATS) or Gigahertz Transverse Electromagnetic (GTEM) cells.

Consisting of a shielded room and a “stirrer”, which changes the resonant electromagnetic field distribution inside the chamber, producing a statistically uniform field. Standards which include high field strength testing requirements often list reverberation chambers as an alternative to absorber-lined chambers because high field strengths can be generated much more efficiently in an RVC, requiring lower power RF amplifiers and thereby reducing the system’s cost. RVCs are specifically mentioned in several automotive standards, as well as in military standard MIL 461F and aircraft standard RTCA DO-160G. In addition to immunity testing, RVCs can also be used for emission testing of material, cable and enclosure shielding. Detailed information on the use of RVCs for EMC testing can be found in the basic standard IEC 61000-4-21. The two new RVC models are designed specifically to accommodate small Equipment Under Test (EUTs), eliminating the need for a larger, more expensive, traditional chamber. Both models are fully assembled and tested in at the factory.

No on-site assembly is required as the chambers are delivered ready to use. The operating frequency range of a RVC is limited by its dimensions and the stirrer design. 2XS, the smaller of the two chambers, has an internal size of 1.5x0.8x1.0m3, providing a test volume of 0.5x0.3x0.5m3 at a start frequency of about 800MHz. The larger model XS has an internal size of 2.7x1.5x1.3m3, resulting in a test volume of 1.2x1.0x0.8 m3 and a start frequency of about 500 MHz. Field strengths of more than 100 V/m are easy to achieve with 1 Watt applied to the antenna and with an empty chamber. Drivers and RVC application packages for Teseq’s Compliance 5 EMC software are available.

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