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What is IEC 61000-4-6?

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Editorial Team - EMC Directory

Aug 5, 2022

The IEC 61000-4-6 is an EMC standard by the International Electrotechnical Commission for induced disturbances caused by electromagnetic fields coming from intentional radio frequency (RF) transmitters in the frequency range of 150 kHz to 80 MHz. This conducted RF is nothing but the unwanted noise in the form of voltages and currents carried by its external wires and cables. The main aim of this standard is to give a general basic reference to all concerned product committees of the IEC. The devices that do not have at least one conducting cable used for mains supply, signal line, or earth connection are excluded from the scope of this standard.

This standard establishes a common reference for evaluating the functional immunity of electrical and electronic equipment when subjected to conducted disturbances induced by RF fields. The devices should be immune to EM fields from any RF source to achieve optimum functioning. When cables are bundled together, they can have both capacitive and inductive coupling. This results in disturbance in voltages and currents. This can be simulated by injecting a common mode disturbance into adjacent cabling using a transducer. Similarly, the conducted RF from the radio transmitter can enter the cable bundles in a car chassis and impact other lines, and travel to the electronics parts of the car. 

The test equipment required as per the standard are:

  1. Test Generator
  2. Coupling and decoupling devices
  3. Clamp injection devices
  4. Direct injection devices
  5. Decoupling networks

The test levels of the unmodulated disturbing signal (Vrms) are shown in the table below:


Frequency from 150 kHz to 80 MHz

LevelVoltage Level (emf)
U0 (V)U0 (dB (µV))
11120
23129,5
310140
XSpecialSpecial

Table: Test Levels of  unmodulated disturbing signals

The “X” level is for the special cases, which can be above, below, or between any levels. It has to be specified in the equipment specification.

The latest edition of the IEC 61000-4-6 was released in 2013 with its amendment in 2015. This edition constituted significant changes and technical revisions from its predecessor. 

Click here for IEC 61000-4-6 test labs.


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