Cellular Certification Part 2
In Part I of my Cellular Certification series, we examined different types of cellular chipsets, modules, modems, and the importance of certifications. We also covered regulatory certification requirements for cellular devices. In the second segment of my Cellular Certification series, we will take an in depth look into Radio Equipment Directive (RED) approvals and the PCS Type Certification Review Board (PTCRB) certification program.
1. What is the Radio Equipment Directive?
RED establishes a regulatory framework for placing radio equipment on the market in the EU. RED certification ensures a single market for radio equipment by setting essential requirements for safety and health, electromagnetic compatibility, and the efficient use of the radio spectrum.
Before the RED was established in 2016, the Radio and Telecommunication Terminal Equipment Directive (R&TTTE) was in place but the need for a single market and consolidated standards inspired the regulatory change.
2. What are essential requirements of RED?
Essential requirements are requirements that equipment needs to meet in order to be placed on the EU market. These can include the Harmonic Standards requirements, hazards associated with the product and efficient use of the radio spectrum. Article 3(3) section provides the details on the essential requirements. 3.Where can I find resources for RED?
1. What is PTCRB approval?
Established in 1997, PTCRB is a certification program created by leading wireless operators to define test specifications and processes to ensure device interoperability on global wireless networks. It provides an outline for compliance with network operators for cellular devices. The PTCRB certification program provides confidence that devices conform with global standards and perform optimally on mobile wireless networks.
2. What tests are performed for PTCRB approvals?
The main tests categories are Over the Air (OTA) performance testing and Radiated Spurious Emissions (RSE) testing.
OTA performance testing verifies the radiated performance of a cellular radio within a device. OTA testing ensures the performance of radio transmitters, receivers, and overall device performance. There are two testcases performed under OTA testing.
- Total Radiated Power (TRP) validates the performance of cellular transmitters and antenna integration.
- Total Isotropic Sensitivity (TIS) validates the performance of cellular receivers and antenna integration.
RSE testing includes active and idle mode radiated spurious emission testing. Active mode RSE testing measures the radiated signal strength of the harmonics of a transmitted cellular signal. Idle mode RSE testing measures emissions coming from the device while it is in “idle” mode (i.e. the cellular radio is not transmitting).
There are some other applicable tests depending on the device features such as Receiver Diversity/ MIMO, Audio testing and Carrier Aggregation testing etc.
3. Where can I find resources for PTCRB testing
PTCRB NAPRD03 Document: defines the technical requirements for certification
Have questions about your device’s certification requirements? Our team of Applications Engineers are experts in wireless designs have the answers to your questions. Consultation is free and available throughout your design cycle. Contact Symmetry Electronics today!