Page 45 - 2019 Mil/Aero eBook
P. 45

Three Key Considerations When Selecting EMI/RFI Shielding Solutions for Aerospace and Defense Applications
Lesa Smith, Marketing Communications Manager, and Neil Mahaffy, Senior Product Engineer, ITT Cannon
As aerospace and defense platforms and environments continue to evolve digitally, the proliferation of new embedded electronics systems and portable electronic devices (PEDs), such as tablets and smartphones, is generating significant RF emissions that can negatively impact the performance of other electronic equipment.
These effects, known as electromagnetic interference (EMI) and radio frequency interference (RFI), increase the potential for signal and data corruption, crosstalk, and equipment malfunctions. In military applications, EMI/RFI can interfere with communication devices and radar signals, delay weapons systems deployment, and enable signal jamming, compromising missions and putting soldiers at risk. In commercial aerospace applications, the proliferation of in-flight entertainment and connectivity (IFEC), in-flight wireless broadband connectivity, and fly- by-wire systems have increased both the complexity and density of cables, boxes, and connectors that — if not properly shielded — can generate stray signals that can potentially interfere with critical avionics, controls, air-to- ground communications, telemetry, and global positioning systems (GPS).
End product environments are a significant factor in the shielding solutions selection process. Ensuring that signals in aerospace and defense applications are properly protected from EMI/RFI may require a series of solutions, including integrated EMI/RFI protection within the connector and external shielding materials designed to protect connectors and cable assemblies from EMI, as well as power surges and other harsh-environment conditions. While there is no one-size-fits-all solution, there are three key considerations when selecting high- performance interconnect shielding solutions and the partner who delivers them: experience in electronics and interconnect solutions, a comprehensive understanding of multiple shielding solutions, and demonstrated expertise in shielding and plating materials.

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