EMA History

Since 1977, EMA® has been developing and providing technologies and services to promote the design, certification and performance of safety- and mission-critical systems

EMA® was founded by David Meriwether and Rod Perala. In its early years, EMA® focused on the effects of nuclear weapon induced ionizing and non ionizing (Nuclear Electromagnetic Pulse) radiation on a wide variety of military and civilian systems, as well as lightning effects upon systems. These efforts included the analysis, hardening and testing of systems such as the Space Shuttle, military and civilian aircraft, various missiles (e.g., Minuteman, Peacekeeper, Trident, Pershing, and many smaller systems), ships, tanks, armored personnel carriers, strategic and mobile  Command, Control and Communication (C3) facilities. EMA® made essential contributions to the understanding and prevention of the ignition of solid rocket propellants due to electrostatic fields induced during handling. These activities were carried out both in the USA and in Western Europe; additional global involvement included the participation on international standards and safety committees, such as the SAE AE4L Lightning Committee, the SAE AE4R High Intensity Radiated Fields (HIRF) Committee, and others. Rod Perala purchased EMA® from existing shareholders and became EMA®‘s president.

In the 2000s, EMA expanded its focus to commercial applications of electromagnetics (EM). In the aerospace industry, these have included a variety of aircraft EME (Electromagnetic Effects) certification projects with activities ranging from full-size aircraft coupling analyses to the calculation of voltages and currents induced at the board level in avionics subsystems. The EM concerns of these projects included lightning, HIRF and EMI/EMC. For ground based systems, lightning protection and mitigation of power line induction effects for railroad signal and communications systems have been areas of significant activity. EMA®‘s experience in EM analysis has also been made available on a wider basis through the development and sales of powerful, user-friendly EM simulation software and a wider range of consultancy on electromagnetic R&D matters. EMA® commercialized its key solvers, Ansys EMC Plus (formerly EMA3D® Cable) and MHARNESS®.

In the 2010s, EMA® added space plasma modeling and RF interference analysis and test capabilities. EMA® began performing consulting projects onsite with customers. EMA® achieved several high-impact validations of simulation compared to test with international aircraft integrators, many of which were published in technical journals. EMA® continued development of Ansys EMC Plus with a focus on usability and increasing the speed of model creation. EMA® was awarded research and development contracts from several US government agencies on a wide variety of topics.

In 2019, existing staff members Cody Weber, Matt Miller, and Tim McDonald purchased EMA® from Rod Perala. EMA® then opened a second office in Pittsfield, Massachusetts, and a third in Champaign, Illinois.

The traditions of technical excellence and commitment to safety and mission performance continue in support of a wide variety of platforms in many industries around the world. EMA®‘s simulation technologies, consulting services, and measurement capabilities are world-class. EMA® now exceeds the size and capabilities of internal groups at major industrial companies and has become an electromagnetic effects provider for the world.