Protecting Medical Devices from Electromagnetic Interference – EMI

Medical devices are quickly adopting the same technology advances that have been proven in consumer electronics, and benefits including compact design and wireless data transfer are making these devices valuable to medical staff. However, technical issues such as electromagnetic interference (EMI) may be bothersome in the world of consumer products but can be life-threatening when they affect medical devices.

Electronic devices that are not designed to protect sensitive electronics may not function properly and may fail. In the U.S. we issue standards and regulations to ensure that manufacturers build products that are safe and function properly. These standards are developed and enforced by industry-specific governing bodies including the FAA, FCC and for medical device EMI standards, see the FDA. In many cases, device manufacturers will seek guidance from the governing body while in the early stages of product development.

The handheld electronic devices common today are pushing the limits of data transfer and wireless communication networks are experiencing ever-increasing traffic from cellular phones, police networks, and private communication networks. The potential EMI issue is causing an increase in standards required to ensure safe, effective operation of the devices on the increasingly cramped networks. EMI shielding is the most effective way to prevent devices from both emitting interference and also helps block interference from entering a device.

The EMI shielding used in smaller handheld medical devices is evolving along with the new requirements placed on device manufacturers. In most cases, device manufacturers rely on suppliers to know how to suppress EMI and prevent interference leaking through small openings intended for cables, switches and antennas that go through the EMI enclosures. Effective suppliers are expert in the published standards and innovative when designing EMI solutions for their customers.

For more information on how Faspro Technologies designs and builds effective EMI shielding for medical devices, please Contact Us or fill in the form below.

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