Today’s law enforcement agencies make use of a variety of high-tech equipment on a day-to-day basis. In addition to the well-known equipment officers carry, they also make use of electrical devices such as body cameras, breathalyzers, communications equipment, emergency respirators, and thermal imaging cameras, among many others.
In critical law enforcement scenarios, this electrical equipment must meet two main requirements. First, it must be rugged and safe for use in all types of weather conditions and challenging situational environments. Second, it needs to be protected from potential disturbances, such as electromagnetic interference (EMI) and radio frequency interference (RFI), to ensure proper functioning at all times.
The electromagnetic spectrum — the collective term for the range and scope of frequencies of electromagnetic radiation and their associated wavelengths — ranges from gamma radiation, which has the shortest photon wavelengths, to radio waves, which have the longest wavelengths, with visible and infrared light in the middle. EMI occurs when any of these waves interfere with the functioning of a piece of equipment; RFI is also classified as a type of EMI, wherein only waves within the radio wave frequencies cause the interference.
EMI can be caused by a number of sources, both natural and manmade. Natural sources include fluctuations in the earth’s natural magnetic field, lightning, and solar magnetic storms; manmade sources include interference from computer circuitry, arc welders, and certain types of electric motors. On a larger scale, transportation infrastructure — like the high-voltage contact switching and third rails required on many subways and railways — can also generate EMI.
For law enforcement workers, EMI can have serious, even life-threatening effects. For instance, it can garble radio communications, which can be disastrous if an officer is radioing for backup. EMI can also cause infrared camera malfunctioning, which can hamper tracking efforts, as well as body cam interference, which can result in fuzzy or distorted footage.
EMI Shielding Solutions From Vanguard
With over 40 years of experience designing, engineering, and manufacturing elastomeric products, Vanguard Products Corp. is proud to specialize in EMI shielding solutions, helping to ensure optimal performance of law enforcement equipment — and optimal safety for law enforcement workers.
Made of the highest-quality silicone and fluorosilicone, our EMI shielding gaskets come standard in a wide range of shapes and sizes, and can also be custom designed for special applications and requirements.
Many of our EMI shielding gaskets meet stringent MIL-DTL-83528 military specifications. Vanguard is a registered manufacturer with the United States Department of State, Office of Defense Trade Controls Compliance, Compliance and Registration Division, in accordance with the Arms Export Control Act (AECA) and the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) Part 122, so you can rest assured that all our EMI shielding gaskets will perform reliably.
To learn more about EMI shielding gaskets , our material options, quality assurance processes, and custom design capabilities, contact the team today.