Clemson University ECE 4350/6350 - Grounding and Shielding

You can take this course for college credit online from your home or office anywhere in the world!

Offered: Spring Semester 2018 · January 10 - April 30       Register before: January 1, 2018.

Course Description

This course introduces electromagnetic compatibility concepts and techniques to students who design or work with electronic systems. Topics include electromagnetic interference and noise control, crosstalk and signal integrity, grounding, filtering, shielding, circuit board layout, lightning and electrostatic discharge protection.

ECE 4350 and ECE6350 are 3-credit university courses offered through Clemson University. ECE4350 is an undergraduate course. ECE 6350 is a graduate course. The lectures, assignments and exams are the same for both courses. ECE 6350 has an additional project requirement. Practicing engineers can enroll in either course, though enrollment in ECE 6350 requires students to have a university degree in an engineering field.

Classes will be broadcast online, so registered students can take the class from remote locations. Students attending class from remote locations will turn in assignments and exams by email. Lectures will be recorded, so students that miss a lecture can view it up to a week later.

How to Enroll

A student who wishes to enroll in ECE 4350 can either apply for admission with “non-degree undergraduate” status or for admission with “non-degree graduate” status. A student who wishes to enroll in ECE 6350 must apply for admission with non-degree graduate status. Once admission is granted, the student should contact the ECE Registration Coordinator, Courtney Honeycutt (), with a request to be added to the enrollment of the online section of either ECE 4350 or ECE 6350.

The link to apply for admission with non-degree *undergraduate* status is

A student with non-degree undergraduate status will be charged a total of $2,079 in tuition and fees for the ECE 4350 course.

The link to apply for admission with non-degree *graduate* status is

[Note: The web page says that the application process must be completed at least 5 weeks prior to the start of the course. However if you apply prior to January 1st, and let Courtney Honeycutt () know that you have applied the process will be expedited and you should be able to register prior to the first class on January 10th.]

A student with non-degree graduate status enrolled in either ECE 4350 or ECE 6350 will be charged tuition and fees for the three-credit course that depends on the student’s status as a South Carolina resident. A South Carolina resident will be charged $1,994 for the course. Non-residents who are a US citizen or permanent resident will be charged $3,956 for the course, and international students will be charged $4,056 for the course.

Course Outline

Automotive Entertainment System Automotive Power Inverter integrated circuits on a printed circuit board Clemson Semi-anechoic Chamber
Topics Covered by Week
  1. Introduction
    • Overview of Electromagnetic Compatibility
    • EMC Regulations
    • EMC Tests
    • Significant Figures, Focusing on What's Important
    • Working with Decibels
  2. Circuit Components and Parasitics
    • Resistance, Capacitance and Inductance
    • Absolute Capacitance, Self Capacitance and Mutual Capacitance
    • Self Inductance, Mutual Inductance, Partial Inductance, Internal and External Inductance
    • Component Parasitics
    • Rules and Tools for Estimating Parasitic Values
  3. Coupling Mechanisms
    • Common Impedance Coupling
    • Electric Field Coupling
    • Magnetic Field Coupling
    • Electromagnetic Radiation
  4. Transmission Lines
    • Transmission Lines
    • Crosstalk in Long Transmission Lines
    • Frequency Domain Representation of Digital Signals
    • Controlling Transition Times in Digital Circuits
  5. Current Paths
    • Tracing Current Paths / Concept of Least Impedance
    • Common-mode and Differential-mode propagation
    • Single-ended vs. Differential vs. Pseudo-Differential Signals
    • Balanced vs. Unbalanced Sources and Channels
  6. Electromagnetic Radiation
    • Radiation from Circuits
    • What makes a Good Antenna
    • Current Distributions in Cables/Slots
  7. Shielding
    • Plane Wave Shielding Theory and Measurements
    • Electric-field Shielding
    • Low-frequency and High-frequency Magnetic-field Shielding
    • Shielded Enclosures
    • Cable Shielding
  8. Filtering
    • Insertion Loss
    • First-Order Low-Pass Filters
    • Second-Order Low-Pass Filters
    • Effect of Component Parasitics
  9. Printed Circuit Board Layout
    • How Boards are Designed and Manufactured
    • EMC Design Guidelines
    • Design Examples
  10. DC Power Distribution and Decoupling
    • Effective Power Distribution Strategies
    • Choosing and Locating Decoupling Capacitors
    • Low-Inductance Capacitor Connections
    • Isolating PLLs and Other Sensitive Devices
  11. Grounding
    • Ground vs. Current Return
    • Ground Structures
    • Grounding Conductors
    • Grounding Strategies
  12. Conducted EMI
    • Conducted EMI Measurements
    • Filtering to Meet Conducted EMI Requirements
    • Reducing Electric-field Coupling 
  13. Printed Circuit Board Design 
    • Strategies
    • What to Watch For
    • The Design Review
    • Examples
  14. Electromagnetic Immunity
    • Design for Radiated Immunity
    • Design for Bulk Current Injection Test Compliance 
    • Design for Electrical Fast Transient Testing
    • Design for Electrostatic Discharge
    • Lightning and Lightning Protection
  15. Course Summary
    • Review of Key Concepts
    • Design Examples

Course Instructor

Prof. Todd Hubing

Dr. Todd H. Hubing is a Professor Emeritus of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Clemson University and Director of the Clemson Vehicular Electronics Laboratory. He and his students at Clemson have worked on the development and analysis of a wide variety of electronic products. EMC design rules can vary greatly depending on whether you are designing high-speed computing equipment, low-cost mixed-signal consumer products or high-power industrial controls; but the basic EMC principles are the same in all industries. By applying these principles in an organized manner, it is possible to review a design circuit-by-circuit to guarantee that any particular EMC requirement will be met. This approach is more effective than the blind application of design guidelines and is the primary emphasis of every EMC design class taught by Dr. Hubing.