The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has awarded patent No. 8508956, “Modular Shielded Electronics Enclosure,” to CareFusion 303, Inc. of San Diego, Calif.
According to the background information supplied by the inventors, the new patent covers “a modular electronics enclosure that incorporates EMI shielding for the enclosed electronics [while] reducing the electromagnetic radiation emitted by conductors that connect the enclosed electronics to components outside the shielded volume.”
Computer processors and motherboards used in some hospital automatic dispensing machines (ADMs), which provide secure storage for certain medications while still making these medications available to caregivers, are known to emit electromagnetic radiation across a wide frequency band due to the high frequency digital signals conducted through the circuits of the processor and on the board,” the inventors say in their patent summary.
“To meet regulatory requirements that limit the amount of electromagnetic energy that can be radiated from electronic devices, motherboards are frequently mounted inside conductive enclosures. As electromagnetic radiation is sometimes emitted from conductors connected between the motherboard and other electronic components, the conductive enclosure is often the entire outer case of the electronics. Providing a conductive enclosure of this size with EMI seals around all access openings is more expensive that an enclosure for just the motherboard, and makes access to the electronics for repair and replacement more complicated.”
In light of these complications, say the inventors, “there is a need to improve the operation of an ADM by providing an easily-removed modular electronics enclosure that also provides EMI shielding around electronic components that generate EMI and limit the radiated electromagnetic energy from cables that are connected to the electronic components within the enclosure.”