Characterizing the Electric Field Coupling from IC Heatsink Structures to External Cables Using TEM Cell Measurements

Shaowei Deng
Todd H. Hubing, Missouri University of Science and Technology
Daryl G. Beetner, Missouri University of Science and Technology

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One method for evaluating the unintentional radiated emissions from integrated circuits (ICs) involves mounting the IC on a printed circuit board (PCB) embedded in the wall of a transverse electromagnetic (TEM) cell. The signal voltages on the IC and its package produce electric fields that can couple to cables and other structures attached to the PCB, inducing common-mode currents that can be a primary source of unintentional radiated emissions. The signal currents in the IC and its package produce magnetic fields that can also result in common-mode currents on larger radiating structures. This paper describes a TEM cell measurement method employing a hybrid to separate the electric field coupling and the magnetic field coupling. The results of this measurement can be used to determine the product of the IC's self-capacitance and the effective voltage that drives this capacitance. This voltage-capacitance product characterizes the IC's ability to drive common-mode currents onto cables or enclosures due to electric field coupling. This information can then be used to estimate the resulting radiated emissions.