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The iNARTE Informer – April 2013

Following this transfer, everyone in the system will have the ability to log in via a secure web portal, access their personal files and perform the following actions:

  • Update contact details;
  • View the program(s) in which they are currently certified
  • View the upcoming requirements for maintaining certification (program dependent);
  • Upload additional information to support ongoing certification applications or currency, (program dependent);
  • Review all previously submitted documents;
  • Make your Resume/CV viewable by the public – only on your approval (great for people who like to promote their experience to the marketplace)
  • Download a PDF of your current Certificate(s) of Competency;
  • Download a copy of a receipt of payment;
  • See the current status of their application (if applicable).

We will be making an announcement in this article and on our web site when this data migration has been completed.


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A Dash of Maxwell’s: A Maxwell’s Equations Primer – Part Two

Maxwell’s Equations are eloquently simple yet excruciatingly complex. Their first statement by James Clerk Maxwell in 1864 heralded the beginning of the age of radio and, one could argue, the age of modern electronics.

Last month we reported the preliminary findings resulting from our Product Safety Job Analysis. Our thanks go to those of you who took time to complete this survey. As you can imagine there are many statistics that can be studied, given the number of different questions asked in different sections of the survey, and here are a few of the more interesting:

  • Almost 90% of the respondents were Engineers with a Bachelor degree or higher
  • 80% of respondents had duties other than those involving Product Safety
  • 70% of respondents’ other duties involved different aspects of Product Compliance
  • Only 60% of respondents spend more than half their time on Product Safety issues
  • 80% of respondents worked in larger organizations with more than 100 employees
  • 80% of respondents had more than 10 years of experience working in Product Safety

We also asked about the relative importance and frequency of use of the different Product Safety related disciplines currently featured in our certification examinations. A further study of these responses will suggest several changes to examination structure in the future in order to bring greater relevance and value to this credential.


The demographics of the global EMC communities have been, and are still changing. There are many regions where the discipline is mature, stable, and in some cases declining, due to migration of manufacturing industries. Conversely new requirements for competent EMC practitioners are emerging elsewhere, often at a pace too rapid to be adequately satisfied by the new graduating classes. It is important that iNARTE certifications form a valuable part of these changes. It is no longer sufficient for our EMC certification to merely identify the top 20% to 25% of practitioners with many years of experience, such a credential has little immediate value in emerging communities. What is needed there is to identify a skill set for the entry level EMC Engineer and Technician so that employers can have some assurance of hiring real contributors and not merely students. The traditional iNARTE program will still remain and can then be used to identify the more experienced Engineers and Technicians as they gain more experience and a higher level of knowledge.

To assist us in developing and revising our EMC certification program accordingly, we have been fortunate enough to have formed a new EMC Steering Committee of volunteers, each with an extensive background in the discipline and each with a wealth of experience in different sectors of industry and the global economies.

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At the same time we will be circulating an EMC Job Analysis Survey, both in the USA and in other countries, the results of which will help guide the focus of our Steering Committee. If you are among those that receive an invitation to respond to this survey, please do so. Your answers will help shape the EMC credentials of the future and maintain the currency and value of the iNARTE brand.


All certification applicants should use the current downloadable pdf application forms from the iNARTE website. Within the last month all application forms have been updated to stipulate the new question requirements.

All new certification applicants, all iNARTE support committee members, certification review committees, and anyone interested in the science of good question writing must watch the two part presentations that RABQSA has now uploaded to YouTube.

Part 1 (required for all question writers):

Part 2 (optional but helpful for question writers):

Although the number of questions required have been significantly reduced, we will be much more critical of question quality. Remember that your certification is a valuable credential only as long as the level of knowledge and experience required to achieve it is maintained. The questions you send us are intended to be included in our question pools and will likely appear in a future examination, so make sure that they are adequately challenging.  



Last time’s question came from the ESD pool:

The magnitude of a charge during triboelectric charging is dependent on the size, shape, composition and electrical properties of the two materials generating the charge, and which other of the following:
A) the weight of the two substances
B) any source of ultra violet rays in the vicinity
C) the relative humidity
D) whether or not the person handling the materials has a good ESD ground or not

The correct answer was C) the relative humidity.

This month’s question from the EMC Design Engineer pool is:

When designing high-speed Printed Wiring Boards, should power and return planes be on adjacent layers, and for what reason?
A) Yes, to reduce noise on the power plane at high frequencies.
B) No, because the material that separates the power and return planes will often fail and short the power plane.
C) Yes, it is industry standard to design the connectors so that they are forced to feed the power and grounds on adjacent layers.
D) Yes, If the planes are not routed next to each other, the boards may warp during fabrication.


author_lawrence-brian Brian Lawrence
began his career in electromagnetics at Plessey Research Labs, designing ”Stealth” materials for the British armed services. In 1973 he moved to the USA and established a new manufacturing plant for Plessey to provide these materials to the US Navy. In 1980 he joined the Rayproof organization to develop an Anechoic Chamber product line. As a result of acquisitions Rayproof merged into Lindgren RF Enclosures and later into ETS-Lindgren. Following a career of more than 40 years in the EMC field, Brian retired as Managing Director of ETS-Lindgren UK in 2006. Later that year he assumed the position of Executive Director for the National Association of Radio and Telecommunications Engineers. NARTE. Now renamed iNARTE, the Association has expanded its operations and in 2012 merged with RABQSA International, a subsidiary of the American Society for Quality, ASQ. Brian remains associated with RABQSA through this merger process.

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