Wired to Drive: EMC Insights on Electric Vehicles

Wired to Drive: EMC Insights on Electric Vehicles
ATEC here, to tell you everything about EMC testing in the world of electric vehicles! As the global automotive industry charges toward an electrified future, ensuring that EVs operate safely and reliably amid electromagnetic interference is more important than ever.

Here, we'll explore the critical role of EMC testing, ensuring that electric vehicles don't interfere with other devices and are not disrupted by external electromagnetic disturbances. We'll cover key international standards, advanced testing equipment, and specific challenges unique to electric vehicles.

Whether you are an engineer or an EV enthusiast, ATEC can assist you with rentals of top-tier EMC test equipment, providing a comprehensive overview of the EMC landscape. This is your hub for valuable insights, expert tips, and the latest trends in EMC testing for EVs.

Why EMC Testing is Essential for Electric Vehicles

Electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) testing ensures that electronic systems and devices operate without being affected by electromagnetic interference (EMI). For electric vehicles (EVs), this testing is crucial to guarantee safe and reliable performance in diverse electromagnetic environments. EMC testing for EVs involves four main types of tests: radiated emissions, radiated immunity, conducted emissions, and conducted immunity.

Types of EMC testing

  • Radiated emissions testing focuses on measuring and limiting the electromagnetic energy emitted by the vehicle into the surrounding environment. The high currents, rapid switching, and digital circuitry in EVs can generate significant interference, potentially affecting other electronic devices. This testing ensures that these emissions remain within acceptable limits, preventing them from disrupting other systems.
  • Radiated immunity testing evaluates how well the vehicle's electronic systems can withstand external electromagnetic fields without malfunctioning. This ensures that the vehicle can operate reliably in environments with strong electromagnetic fields, such as near radio transmitters.
  • Conducted emissions testing measures the electromagnetic energy conducted along the vehicle’s power lines and cables. This testing ensures that the vehicle does not conduct excessive electromagnetic interference through its wiring, which could affect other connected systems.
  • Conducted immunity testing assesses the vehicle's ability to operate correctly when subjected to electromagnetic disturbances conducted along its power lines and cables. This includes specific tests like the 2B Pulse Test and the 4 Pulse Test. These tests ensure that the vehicle's electronic systems can withstand conducted disturbances from external sources.

Given the complexity of EV electronics, rigorous EMC testing across all four categories ensures that all systems are prepared to face the challenges of various electromagnetic environments, ensuring reliable and interference-free operation.

Key Components of an EV Affected by EMC

  • Drive Motor: Generates electromagnetic emissions due to high currents and rapid switching.
  • Battery Management System: Shortened to BMS, these systems monitor and manage battery operation, sensitive to electromagnetic interference.
  • Electronic Control Units (ECUs): Also known as ECUs, these manage critical vehicle functions like braking, steering, and display, which can be affected by EMI.

EMC Standards for Electric Vehicles

  • ISO 7637: Road vehicles — Electrical disturbances from conduction and coupling.
  • LV 123: Ensures the safety, reliability, and performance of high-voltage components in electric and hybrid vehicles.
  • CISPR 25: Radio disturbance characteristics for the protection of receivers used on board vehicles.
  • ISO 11452: Road vehicles — Component test methods for electrical disturbances from narrowband radiated electromagnetic energy.

  Key Equipment and Tests

In EMC testing, equipment like the BOLAB AN-ABCD-300-C10 and the BOLAB Systems BLS-130-70N-TS play critical roles. The AN-ABCD-300-C10 is an artificial network system designed for simulating EV conditions, crucial for both 2B and 4 pulse tests, where it provides a robust, self-monitoring testing platform for high-voltage testing scenarios. Meanwhile, the 4-quadrant voltage amplifier, with its capability to generate precise voltage pulses and manage power in both sourcing and sinking modes, is vital for simulating real-world conditions during these tests.
Request Quote: BOLAB AN-ABCF-300-C10
Request Quote: BOLAB BLS-130-70N-TS

Additionally, the Wavecontrol WP400 Probe and the Narda ELT400 EMF Meter are instrumental in monitoring the effectiveness of EMC testing. The WP400 measures electromagnetic emissions across a wide frequency range to ensure compliance with EMC regulations. Meanwhile, the ELT400 measures low-frequency magnetic fields, critical for assessing the emissions from EV drive motors and battery management systems.
Request Quote: Wavecontrol WP400 Probe
Request Quote: Narda ELT-400 EMF Meter

In the 2B Pulse Test, these systems work together to replicate and monitor the disturbances caused by sudden disconnections of inductive loads, providing data on the vehicle's electromagnetic immunity. Similarly, in the 4 Pulse Test, they help in analyzing the vehicle’s ability to handle potential overvoltage events from scenarios like power supply switching, ensuring that the vehicle's electronic systems remain robust and reliable under various conditions. This comprehensive suite of testing equipment and methodologies ensures that electric vehicles are assessed thoroughly for both emission and immunity aspects of EMC, safeguarding their functionality and compliance.

How ATEC Can Assist You

EMC testing is crucial for ensuring the safety and functionality of electric vehicles, safeguarding them against electromagnetic interference. ATEC provides a wide range of advanced EMC testing equipment for rent. With our expertise and advanced tools, you can navigate complex EMC testing procedures confidently. Reach out to ATEC today to enhance the electromagnetic compatibility of your EVs and stay ahead in this rapidly evolving field.