The EMC antenna is one of the least understood elements in an EMC test instrumentation set-up. If you don’t select the right EMC antenna, you can end up having numerous problems. For instance, such issues could be related to lengthy or difficult test procedures, failed examinations, erroneous test data, as well as challenges with repeatability. The level of experience you have cannot always ensure success. In this regard, to avoid having such troubles, there are eight factors you might need to consider when selecting an EMC antenna. These factors are, as follows:
1. Size: To make sure you choose the correct size of your antenna, keep in mind the following:
- If the frequency is lower, the antenna should be bigger;
- Compare the door dimensions with the antennae;
- The use of space should be maximised, so don’t take any space you won’t need;
- There should be enough space around the antenna so that it can retain calibration validity.
2. Weight: Don’t overestimate the weight of the antenna, so consider the following:
- Take all actions that will help to minimise the risk of damage or harm;
- Make sure that the existing polarisation-change mechanism can cope with its weight.
3. Environment: Take into considerations the external and internal environmental factors. For instance, make sure that the antenna can withstand high winds or constant sun exposure under high temperature.
4. The intended purpose of use: Make sure you’re using the right antenna. For instance, if you only want to measure emissions, then use a dedicated emissions antenna.
5. Use a preamplifier
6. The antenna should be selected in accordance with the CE requirements. Sometimes, the standard applicable to your product states the specific antenna required.
7. Smooth data plot: Make sure you check the antenna data plots for excessive VSWR
8. Range cover: Ensure that the antenna you choose can cover the range required and its performance will not be diminished.