An Enclosure houses the electronics, control interface, etc. and is to protect the equipment and user. It is designed not only for its utilitarian requirements, but also to be pleasing to the eye. Regulations may dictate the features and performance of enclosures.
An engineer or designer must balance many objectives and practical considerations when selecting enclosures and protective features of the product itself and its components.
- Hazards to be protected against: mechanical damage, exposure to weather and dirt, electromagnetic interference, etc.
- Heat dissipation requirements
- Tradeoffs between tooling capital cost and per-unit cost
- Tradeoffs between time to first delivery and production rate
- Availability and capability of suppliers
- User interface design and convenience
- Ease of access to internal parts when required for maintenance
- Product safety, and compliance with regulatory standards
- Aesthetics, and other marketing considerations
- Service life and reliability
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- The Art of Electronics, by Paul Horowitz and Winfield Hill ISBN 0521370957, pages 852-858