The team of 70 experts at TÜV SÜD's test laboratory in San Diego work closely with their counterparts in the global TÜV SÜD network to deliver a local service, backed up by global knowledge. The San Diego team can harness the most appropriate expertise to support a wide range of customer requirements.
Chip Fleury, West Regional EMC Manager for TÜV SÜD America, explains: “TÜV SÜD’s level of commitment to the telecoms market is evident in the number of specialist operations that we have across the world, including China, Germany, Japan, North America and the United Kingdom. That gives our clients a distinct advantage as we can easily tap into the specialist knowledge of our global experts, to deliver best practice advice in a wide range of industries such as aviation, defence, electronic consumer products, industrial, marine, medical devices, telecommunications, and communication technology infrastructure and equipment.”
TÜV SÜD America’s telecommunication services, from both the San Diego, Massachusetts and Minnesota laboratories, include a large testing scope, FCC, Industry Canada, R&TTE Directive, Japan and Marine Equipment Directive certification services, certification for the TL 9000 Quality Management System for Telecommunications, and an International Compliance Management Service, which help customers sell their products to the global economy.
Alongside TÜV SÜD’s UK laboratories, San Diego has invested in test equipment in anticipation of the ‘LTE rush’, making it the first LTE testing site in Southern California. This new test and certification service will help US manufacturers meet their time to market requirements for quick market access. The laboratories can also test to the new IEEE 802.11ac standard for wireless equipment operating in the 5GHz band.
Chip continues: “Traditionally test laboratories take their time to invest in new equipment, but we have invested in LTE capabilities now to meet the anticipated demand as device manufacturers rush to take their new products onto the market. We are investing heavily in our wireless test and certification capabilities as we know this will be a significant growth market for our customers.”
The San Diego laboratories are also one of the very few in the USA to offer International Compliance Management Services to help customers keep up to date with rapidly changing regulations for individual countries and gain access quickly to global markets. TÜV SÜD’s comprehensive understanding of the process also saves customers time and cost as tests are not unnecessarily duplicated to gain the correct regional or country certifications.
Past investments have given the San Diego team both a 10 metre and three metre EMC test chamber, allowing them to test a wider range of telecoms equipment, from small mobile phones to larger industrial equipment. As an example of the team’s commitment to develop the laboratory’s capability to test a broader range of equipment, both large and small, an electric car has already been tested in the new 10 metre chamber.
“The work we did for this particular car manufacturer is a testament to our ability to prioritise our clients’ timescales over our own. With cars sitting in containers at US ports, the manufacturer was concerned that some components were not FCC compliant. They were able to rapidly ship a car to our site and run the appropriate tests in a short turnaround time to gain FCC verification, meaning our customer could release their cars on the market without delay,” says Chip.
The significant investment in the San Diego site’s comprehensive RF testing facilities (that satisfy U.S., Canadian, and European requirements for products that include voice, data and voice-data combinations, as well as base stations which require RF spectrum management evaluation and approval) makes TÜV SÜD America a key contributor to the global telecommunications plan.
The team supports telecoms manufacturers with a complete product safety service, enabling them to enter global markets with the TÜV SÜD Mark for certification, NRTL services, EAC certification, the CB Scheme, Australian Recognized Testing Authority, Bellcore testing, and EN 60950 expertise.
TÜV SÜD is also one of the USA’s largest independent EMC testing laboratories and performs emissions and immunity testing services at its San Diego laboratories for many products including telecoms, information technology equipment, and tele-medical devices.
One of TÜV SÜD America’s key markets is medical devices, and the San Diego team recently completed an interesting EMC project. The product is a transmitter, implanted into heart patients post-operation, to remotely monitor their health once they return home. Of course, an assurance of no electromagnetic interference was vital and the team at San Diego was able to deliver that. Another product has also been tested which uses GPS and Wi-Fi technologies to monitor the location of vulnerable people and track them if they become lost.
A key reason our clients return to us is that we understand the business pressures that manufacturers are under to get their products to market as quickly as possible. Any increase in time for the product development cycle could cost millions and have a huge impact on their competitive advantage.
“Our work with the GPS tracker is a good example of this as we worked as part of the customer’s team, proactively driving them to meet deadlines so that their product was ready to launch at an exhibition which was core to their sales strategy. We don’t just sit back and wait for the work to come to us, we make sure that we help our customers meet their objectives on time. The team here at San Diego completely understands that the customer is our number one priority,” continues Chip.
The San Diego site has a vibrant atmosphere as the team works with experts from across the TÜV SÜD global network, using their knowledge to deliver customers a very specific service to suit their particular product and market needs. By benefitting from this ‘one-stop-shop’ global capability, San Diego’s clients can be assured that they have access to the most comprehensive knowledge and best-practice expertise which is delivered to them face-to-face by US-based consultants, certification specialists and engineers.
“Our constant mantra is that we work with our clients to meet their timescales and not ours, as we understand how important it is for them to launch products on the market fast,” concludes Chip.