There are many reasons why you should work with EMC Technologies, not just that we are the best equipped independent EMC and radio product testing facility in Australia & New Zealand. On first glance, it may appear that the cost is not the cheapest testing Australia, but be warned you get what you pay for! EMC Technologies pride themselves on offering testing services that will be accepted through mutual accreditation agreements, combined with excellent facilities and full transparency. We don’t make false claims or exaggerate our capabilities. So, let’s have a quick look at some took points to keep in mind when selecting your local product certification laboratory service.
Can you test lab do the job correctly and will the results/report actually be accepted!
FCC and ISED radio testing (testing of intentional RF transmitters and receivers) require the test laboratory to meet the FCC and ISED checklists to satisfy their test site, equipment and that the staff knowledge is satisfactory. This accreditation assessment is undertaken by an independent accreditation body (such as NATA) that is recognized by the Federal Communication Commission (FCC) for the United States of America and also by with the Department of Innovation, Science and Economic Development (ISED) for Canada. Once the accreditation body has confirmed the test labs ability and the scope of the testing range, this can be used then by the FCC/ISED to process to list online the test lab’s scope. It is always important to go online and check your test lab’s scope on both the accreditation bodies’ websites. Check that the lab is listed (accredited) by the FCC and ISED as accredited for the required test. Ask the pointed question, is your lab fully accredited for the actual required test?
Watch out for misleading weasel words such “we can test to FCC and ISED standards”.
The test lab may not have the required scope of accreditation and this leads to how competent, transparent and trustworthy the testing laboratory is! Did you know that Department of Innovation, Science and Economic Development (ISED) Canada will accept an FCC test report if the test report is less than one year old, has a cross-reference to all the Canadian requirements, the Radiated emissions measurements were performed on an ISED registered and accredited test site and fulfils the applicable ISED standards (much of which are common with the FCC requirements).
Efficiency and accuracy of your product radio certification
Back in the 1990s, it was common to go to a test lab and make some pre-test frequency scans in a shielded room (metal Faraday cage) then possibly jump into a car and head to an Open Area Test Site (OATS). Then the indoor equivalent test site was validated for use, these are known as iOATS (indoor Open Area Test Site) or semi-anechoic chamber (SAC). It has now become the industry standard for laboratories that want to provide accurate and repeatable measurements. The iOATS radiated emissions test site reduces total test time, increases measurement accuracy and allows testing all day every day! But the biggest advantage of the iOATS is that the plots or graphs of the results do not include any ambient emissions from other RF signals as the indoor chamber isolates ambient signals from the real world (TV, radio, cell phones and other RF communications. What does this mean for you? Well, it means that you can positively identify the RF signals from your product without the risk of being masked by an ambient signal. This allows better investigation of the product’s EMC and radio performance and also may allow the re-application of other limits to show compliance in the of for different markets in the future. Additionally, reducing test time and staying on track to a schedule is essential to reduce time to market and be allowed to sell your product faster in the target region!
How many of these amazing iOATS radiated emissions test sites do we have?
We have three (3) (yes, that’s right, it’s not a typo it is 3 valid and fully compliant and NATA /FCC/ISED accredited test sites) accredited test sites in Melbourne (2 in Keilor Park and 1 at our subsidiary branch EMC Bayswater in the south-east suburbs). This also includes the only first and only commercial 10m iOATS test in Australia. And we also have one (1) in Sydney at our Seven Hills facility. So how does having 4 complete fully functioning FCC and ISED registered test sites with a scope up to 40 GHz help your company? Well simply put you receive the best possible testing with the most flexibility in scheduling and delivery. We also have a 3m/10m/30m OATS test site in Rural Colo, if required, for any particular purpose (possibly a nice day out of the office).
Can you sell your product in multiple markets or regions?
With the huge scope and capability (not limited like some other testing companies) we can support all major markets including North America (FCC) Canada (ISED/IC), Europe including the UK and all of Europe(CE marking), Japan (VCCI and MIC), Taiwan (BSMI), Singapore, Malaysia, and don’t forget Australia and New Zealand (RCM and RSM). While the regulations are different, there is much overlap in the actual test standards so if you subsequently decide to add target markets the test data already on file at EMC Technologies may be used to greatly reduce testing costs. In Australia, only EMC Technologies is recognized in all these countries: USA (FCC), Canada (ISED) Japan (VCCI), Taiwan (BSMI), Singapore (IMDA) and all 28 EU countries (CE marking).
Some countries only accept compliance testing results performed within that country (e.g. China and Brazil. For the majority of countries, there are mutual recognition agreements in place that will accept either an FCC or CE test report. Some countries only require that the test lab has ISO 17025 accreditation which is the quality aspect of a test lab, don’t be fooled into believing that a partially accredited lab is competent in your applicable standard. In some instances, they may have limited scopes of accreditation and may not be performing the measurements correctly or they may be taking short-cuts or they may be using un-calibrated test equipment. Since you sign the declaration of conformity (DoC), you and your company are legally responsible if your product is found to be non-compliant. The fines in some jurisdictions may be massive. So, it is prudent that you should only trust a reputable testing facility such as the EMC Technologies group. If our accreditation scope has a limitation, we will tell you in writing. Even when a test lab has become accredited, that only signifies that they have met the minimum requirements of the standards listed on their scope. At EMC Technologies, we strive to exceed all requirements with excellence.
SAR and human exposure FCC and ISED, CE, RCM requirements
All RF transmitters including Wi-Fi, RLAN, ZigBee, Cellular, 4G, 5G etc have human exposure safety concerns and associated compliance requirements. We are experts in Electromagnetic Radiation assessments & testing including Specific Absorption Rate (SAR) testing that is required under the certain conditions, i.e. when the RF power is significant and/or if used in close proximity to the head or torso. Our experts can guide you through the process and offer the best advice on any exclusion to the mandated requirements of the chosen region. When seeking ISED certification, select a lab that is accredited for the relevant parts of RSS-102. At the time of writing, EMC Technologies Group were the only Australian ISED accredited labs for RF Exposure including SAR and Nerve Stimulation (NS). NS is a unique Canadian requirement which very few labs can perform.
If you already have an FCC, ISED or CE SAR report, our SAR expert can perform an expert assessment of the report and if all is in order, issue a Statement of Compliance that is accepted by the ACMA. No other lab or company in Australia have this competency.
We are also accredited for desktop calculation of RF exposure where the transmitter antenna is more than 20 cm from the body of the user. This accreditation can reduce the cost in comparison to direct measurements or testing.
The EMC Technologies has expanded operations and recently increased throughput through continued significant investment in state-of-the-art-test facilities, equipment and process and qualified staff. We are proud to offer our accredited EMC and associated regulatory test services and hope to assist you with all your product certification and compliance.
All 4 Australian & New Zealand EMC Technologies group sites are accredited FCC and ISED listed testing laboratories.
Don’t forget, we don’t just do Radio and EMC testing, we also offer accredited electrical safety testing, ingress protection (IP code) testing, site investigations such as EMF/EMR assessment and we have a superb accredited FCC & ISED EMR/MPE SAR testing facility to complement our FCC & ISED radio testing.
Get in touch now to start your next product compliance project with us!