The Newsletter of the IEEE Tucson Section September 2002


The Bulletin of Electrical & Electronics Engineers of Tucson




Date: October 9, 2002

Day: Wednesday
Time: 6:00 PM
Speaker: Colin Brench, Hewlett-Packard Company
Place: ECE512 at the U of A (Note different location)

EMI shielding is a mainstay of EMI control. Frequently the design of the cooling or other apertures in a given enclosure is driven by the EMI requirements. This can result in compromised thermal and acoustic behavior and may mandate larger, noisier fans to meet other environmental needs. The well-established "Shielding Effectiveness" equations have their place, but they also have their limitations.

In this presentation, test data and modeling are used to show and explain some of commonly seen but misunderstood shielding problems. Typical cases will be presented including the effects of internal and external cables when located close to an array of apertures. Any proximal conductors can influence the shielding performance of an enclosure, and can create windows where the shielding is much lower than anticipated resulting in excessive emissions. There are also situations when an EMI shield can be working much better than thought and under these conditions larger apertures are possible. This may permit the use of smaller fans resulting in lower noise and/or less expensive construction details. Designing appropriate EMI shields is a major task for EMC engineers and understanding their true behavior is key to achieving this goal.

Colin Brench has worked for Hewlett-Packard (via Digital Equipment Corp. and Compaq) for 16 years, where he is a Principal Member of the Technical Staff. He is responsible for EMC product design, and developing EMC modeling capabilities in the High Performance Server Division. Colin has been active in the area of antenna and shielding behavior since the early 1970's.

Colin has presented EMC training classes that embrace a broad range of topics from microprocessor packaging, through printed circuit module issues, to system design and shielding.

Colin is a co-author of EMI/EMC Computational Modeling Handbook, and has authored over 20 technical papers and articles. In addition, he holds ten patents for various methods of EMI control. He is a NARTE certified EMC Engineer, a member of the IEEE EMC Society, and is active in the TC-9 and ANSI ASC63 SC-1 committees. In March of 2001, Colin was appointed a Distinguished Lecturer for the IEEE EMC Society.

Keep on the Lookout!

The joint chapter will be sponsoring another meeting in November! Keep looking to the website for more details.

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We need to hear from you! We want to know what we can provide to make IEEE a better organization. If you have any ideas for meetings, any activities that promote engineering and the IEEE, let us know! We’d like to hear from you. Also, remember that we run this as a set of volunteers. If you put something into this organization, you can get much more out of it! We need you to help out! Contact us! Help out! Contact us!

Standing Committees

The Tucson Section has standing committees whose chairperson is not elected, but is appointed by the Section Chairman. If you are interested in any of these positions or are interested in having a say in what the Tucson Section does, please notify Joseph Wu at or at 519-0904.

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Reliability Engineering Conferences

The 11th Annual Applied Reliability Engineering and Product Assurance Institute for Engineers and Managers and the 40th Annual Reliability Engineering and Management Institute Conferences will be held in Tucson and cover topics on reliability engineering and product assurance, reliability prediction techniques, and development testing. For more information about these and other Reliability Engineering conferences and seminars, contact Dr. Dimitri Kececioglu at 621-6120 or through email at You can also find more information the website:


Tucson Section, Institute of

Electrical and Electronics Engineers

1029 N. Del Valle Pl.

Tucson, AZ 85711


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Tucson Section Questions or 519-0904



Tucson Section Meeting Wednesday, October 9, 2002

6:00 PM, at the U of A


(Note: Different Location Than Usual)

(Southwest of Speedway and Mountain – Parking available Northeast of Speedway and Mountain after 5 P.M.)

Refreshments Provided










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