Flood of online garbage - an invisible challenge for our society

Published 2 Apr 2024

There is an ongoing flood of electronic junk, disrupting the infrastructure of the power grid. In the worst case, this could affect critical industries such as healthcare, industry and defence. At KAMIC, we believe that knowledge needs to increase. Therefore, we are now starting a campaign to share and spread socially important information about EMC.

Electromagnetic compatibility, EMC, is the ability of electronic components, facilities and systems to work together without causing or being affected by electromagnetic disturbances in their normal environment. An example – our mobile phones and smart cars must work without interfering with radio communications at nearby airports or the connected equipment in hospitals.

Today, many electronic products contain components that can cause disturbances in the wiring network. Network debris is created that affects everything from cables to sensors and control systems, which in turn can compromise the performance and reliability of the wiring network. Torbjörn Jansson, our expert in EMC matters, explains:

- The network's infrastructure is continuously receiving more connected facilities, which affect both the quality and effect of the network. Changes in voltage such as spikes, dips, transients and harmonics occur more and more often, and this often depends on the structure of the network, connected products and increased degree of connection, overall.

Shortens the life of electronics

Charging posts, solar cell systems and similar installations that convert direct current to alternating current and frequency controls cause what are known as harmonics. Harmonics means that the power grid is loaded with more or less than the normal 50Hz. This can, in the worst case, result in a short circuit or fire.

- Research has shown that the harmonic problem can also shorten the lifespan of electronics by between 25-30 percent, and that cables need to be oversized. A major sustainability problem in the long term as electronics must be replaced prematurely, says Jörgen Persson, Project Engineer in shielding technology.

Works with shielding technology

In order to protect socially critical installations here and now, knowledge of EMC and effective shielding technology is required. This could, for example, be about specially designed rooms with advanced filters that block out network interference. KAMIC has extensive experience and extensive knowledge of the technology.

- Today this is mainly used by the Armed Forces and authorities, but we see that even companies that work with sensitive and critical information should review their protection against intrusions and electromagnetic fields, says Jonas Eriksson, Business Area Manager for KAMIC Shielding Technology.

It is of course important to also get to the bottom of the problem – reducing the flood of electronic waste is absolutely necessary. Manufacturers need to develop products that are EMC compliant.

- By adopting sustainable EMC solutions, we can together ensure that our wiring networks become more robust and reliable so that our electronics become more sustainable, in a time of increased electronic consumption, concludes Jonas Eriksson.

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