Why Does the Military Use EMI Shielding?

EMI shielding is one of the most critical technologies in the modern military, but why is that? Our guide will answer that and more by breaking down what EMI is, what EMI shielding means, and how the military utilizes it to ensure effective capability.

What Is EMI?

First, before we can get into EMI shielding and its applications in the military, what exactly is EMI? Electromagnetic interference (EMI), also known as radio frequency interference, is the disruption of electrical flow in a circuit due to an outside force—typically a magnetic field.

There are many natural sources of EMI (rain, solar radiation, electrical storms), but the most common culprit in our modern world is human-made electronics and electrical equipment. Due to the close relationship between electricity and magnetism, all our electronics—even the ones we carry in our pockets—create a small magnetic field that can disrupt other circuits nearby.

What Is EMI Shielding?

Naturally, we couldn’t use all electronics of our modern life if they were constantly interfering with one another—that’s where EMI shielding comes in. EMI shielding uses manufacturing techniques like vacuum metalizing to protect electronic circuits and signals from EMI.

EMI shielding works in two ways: protecting the circuits from outside interference and preventing EMI from escaping the equipment. This double shielding method ensures that our electronics don’t interfere with one another when operated nearby.

Why Does the Military Need EMI Shielding?

Our modern military uses advanced technology equipment, often near one another. As we know, military technology is essential to national defense and military capability, so EMI shielding is one of the most vital aspects of a modern military.

The military depends on effective EMI shielding to protect their capability, whether it’s EMI from nearby electrical equipment or a targeted enemy attack. Military applications for EMI shielding include:

  • Communication channels
  • Transportation (trucks, helicopters, airplanes)
  • Radar technology
  • Drones

So, the military uses EMI shielding for the same reasons we all do—to ensure our technology functions properly. But with the military, the stakes are higher, and EMI shielding is even more critical to technological capability.

By Dianne Pajo

Dianne Pajo is a writer based out of the Chicagoland area with a passion for music, combat sports, and animals. She enjoys competing in amateur boxing and kickboxing, but in her other leisure time, you can find her performing music around the city. She is also a dog mom of 2.