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What is IEC 61000-4-2?

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Editorial Team - EMC Directory

Jun 13, 2022

The IEC 61000-4-2 is an electromagnetic standard that specifies the limits, requirements, and test methods for electrical and electronic equipment subjected to static electricity discharges, from operators directly, and from personnel to adjacent objects. All people carry static electromagnetic discharge that gives rise to transient currents and electromagnetic fields that can interfere with electrical and electronic equipment. Hence, this standard for established to ensure that the equipment will work reliably and efficiently despite the static interferences in their work environment.

The standard has defined four levels of ESD protection, using two different testing methods. The first is the contact discharge and the second is air discharge. The contact discharge involves sending an ESD pulse directly from the ESD test gun that is touching the equipment under test (EUT). This is the preferred method of testing. Air discharge is used for cases where contact discharge testing is not possible. In the air discharge test, the ESD test gun is brought close to the EUT until a discharge occurs. Both methods have respective limits which are similar to each other for every level.

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