Tuesday, 04 June 2013 18:39

Adequate RF Protection Is Very Important

RF protection or Radio frequency shielding involves the construction of enclosures for the purpose of reducing the transmission of electric or magnetic fields from one space to another. The shielding can reduce the coupling of radio waves, electromagnetic fields and electrostatic fields. With the increase in sensitive computer and electronic equipment, the issues of interference, unauthorized surveillance, and protection from high voltages have become increasingly

important. All electronic and computer systems radiate certain frequencies of radio and magnetic waves. These signals can be received by special surveillance equipment, compromising the privacy of their source. In some cases, they can interfere with, or may be affected by, other equipment in the vicinity. RF protection enclosures are used in these situations to reduce the levels of radio frequency radiation that enters or leaves the enclosed space.

Copper is an ideal material to use in RF protection because of its high electrical conductivity. This feature, combined with its other physical properties, ductility, malleability, and ease of soldering, make it an ideal material for radio frequency shielding. Copper also absorbs radio and magnetic waves. A commonly used shielding method is to coat a surface with a material loaded with a suitable material, typically copper, silver or nickel in the form of very small particles. Sheet copper can be formed into essentially any shape and size, and electrically connected to a grounding system to provide an effective radio frequency enclosure. The enclosures are usually designed to filter a range of frequencies under specified conditions. Most often, they are constructed for government or corporate groups with particular requirements. Properly designed and constructed copper enclosures can provide a high degree of effectiveness to suit practically any demand. Other materials used for electromagnetic shielding include sheet metal, metal screen, and metal foam. Any holes in the shield or mesh must be significantly smaller than the wavelength of the radiation that is being kept out, or the enclosure will not effectively approximate an unbroken conducting surface. Another commonly used shielding method, especially with electronic goods housed in plastic enclosures, is to coat the inside of the enclosure with a metallic ink or similar material. The ink consists of a carrier material loaded with a suitable metal, typically copper or nickel in the form of very small particulates. It is sprayed on to the enclosure and, once dry, produces a continuous conductive layer of metal, which can be electrically connected to the chassis ground of the equipment, thus providing effective shielding.

Radio frequency shielded openings help ensure sensitive and confidential information is contained in commercial and government buildings. RF protection is necessary in healthcare facilities to prevent radio interference with medical equipment. Radio frequency shielded openings are used in medical facilities, business offices, test labs, computer data processing, security centers, financial centers, government and military facilities. The openings are needed to help avoid computer crashes, compromise confidential information, interference from local radio frequency transmitters: radio towers, TV broadcast, production welders, airport radar and MRI test equipment.

 

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