Test Equipment in any branch of engineering is as important as the equipment itself. It helps us in checking equipment performance and identify defects if any. In this post, we will discuss Electrical/ Electronic Test Equipment, how it works, types, importance, common application, and precautions while using it.
What Do You Mean by Test Equipment?
A Test Equipment is used to create signals and capture the relative responses from electrical/ electronic DUTs (Devices Under Test). In this way, we can easily prove the proper operation of the DUT and moreover trace faults in the device.
The test and measurement equipment industry has established paramount importance and demand. Test and measurement instruments comprise everything from automatic test equipment (ATE), radio frequency (RF) test and data acquisition (DAQ) to oscilloscopes, signal generators, and spectrum analyzers.
The need for testing and measurement is in almost every industry—ranging from automotive, IT and telecommunications, and aerospace and defense to electronics, industrial, and healthcare.
A quality measurement means that the testing method and the results are appropriate to answer all the questions that emerged alongside the project. Electronic test equipment is used to capture and display signals from electronic devices under test (DUTs) in order to ensure their proper operation. The use of testing and measurement tools is quintessential for any electronics application.
Why Test Equipments are Required?
The performance of all electrical or electronic equipment tends to degrade with time due to fair wear out and component material degradation owing to its exposure to heat, shock, vibration as well as other environmental conditions. Accordingly, the chances of equipment failure and electric shock increases with time. Hence, it is always advised that the periodic calibration and tests of all electrical/ electronic equipment must be conducted.
If we talk about the measurement involved with electronics, then we cannot discard the measurement importance of voltage/current/capacitance/resistance/inductance, etc. If the testing/fault finding of a circuit is required, then all the above-mentioned electrical quantities cannot be neglected. It is why we have to consider all the electrical quantities and check for their correctness in order to determine the condition/defect of all components of a circuit.
Today, if we think about practical electrical/electronic engineering i.e., the field job, we should be able to use various kinds of test equipment’s ranging from the very simple and inexpensive like tester (a test light consisting of just a light bulb and a test lead) to complex and sophisticated test equipment like Digital Oscilloscope.
Importance of Test and Measurement Equipment
Test and measurement equipment validate the performance of all electrical or electronic devices. Testing helps identify the components that undergo timely degradation due to the device’s exposure to external disturbances such as heat, shocks, vibrations, and fluctuating environmental conditions. This analysis further helps predict equipment failure and perform calibration before any considerable damage. In other words, test and measurement equipment helps increase the shelf life, performance, accuracy, and efficiency of devices.
Measurement of electrical parameters such as current, voltage, capacitance, resistance, inductance, and impedance are critical to detect faults and defects in the device under test. Test equipment measures these parameters, identifying possible errors and risks in the system that can be corrected for effectiveness and reliability.
Types of Electrical/ Electronic Test Equipment
There are numerous applications and electrical tests that can be carried out by Electrical / Electronic Test Equipment. Here is a list of the most common applications (but not limited to) of Test Equipment:
- To check basic electrical/ electronic parameters such as Voltage, Current, Resistance, Inductance, Capacitance, etc.
- To check Insulation of wire or equipment in order to avoid chances of electric shock or fire.
- To verify equipment performance.
- For identification of defects at system and component level.
- To check continuity or conductance.
There are different types of Test Equipment available for performing specific functions. Some of the most popular and common types of Test Equipment are listed below:
- Digital Multimeter
- Clamp Meter (Tong Tester)
- Shock Pulse Meter
- Digital Oscilloscope
- Wee Megger
- Electric Motor Checker (EMC)
- Instrumentation Amplifier
- Owen Bridge Circuit
- Analog Voltmeter
- Digital Voltmeter
- Frequency Counter
- Resistance Temperature Detector (RTD)
- Signal Generator
- Spectrum Analyzer
- Neon tester
Top Test and Measurement Equipment Growth Drivers (Industries and Players)
The test and measurement industry is certain to grow across many sectors. The following are the major industries and fields that drive the growth of test and measurement equipment:
- While autonomous driving, connected cars, and driverless vehicles are under the experimental stage, the need for test and measurement equipment is ever-increasing in the automotive sector to predict and optimize the performance of these vehicles.
- RF testing is needed to test the addition of wireless communications standards like Long-Term Evolution (LTE) and Wi-Fi to traditional automotive applications.
- Other applications that demand test equipment include infotainment systems, automotive radar, target simulation, collision avoidance, and the new Wi-Fi standard 802.11p.
Data Centers and New Standards
- High-speed test and measurement instruments have increased demand in data centers with the need for greater bandwidths, sample rates, and new standards.
- Applications such as differential quadrature phase-shift keying (DQPSK) and 16 quadrature amplitude modulation (QAM) are growing, creating greater demand for test equipment.
5G and Pre-5G Technologies
- The research on 5G and pre-5G (such as LTE Advanced Pro or 4.5G) technologies drives greater bandwidth requirements, which in turn generates more demand for test and measurement devices.
Power Management Applications
- Power management applications such as power sequencing and power supplies require test and measurement equipment in order to maximize system efficiency and resolution.
802.11ax Wi-Fi Standard
- The new 802.11ax Wi-Fi Standard drives the growth of test and measurement equipment due to new and complex RF testing needs for higher performance and accuracy.
Aerospace and Defense
With the increase in complexity and variation of aerospace and defense systems, there is an increased growth in the demand for flexible, scalable, and accurate test equipment to solve challenges in testing, capture and analysis, validation and verification.
- Narrowband IoT (NB-IoT) and mobile IoT standards such as Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) and LTE-M are creating a high demand for parallel testing and low-cost USB instrumentation, as well as vector network analyzers and DAQ systems.
- Medical devices and healthcare instruments generate demand for efficient and accurate RF testing.
- Digital transformation of devices has driven the demand for digital multimeters, electrical testers and environmental testers.
You can rate the importance of Test equipment by just this fact that almost all electronic/electrical equipment need them right from initially designing new products or troubleshooting the existing devices to ensure proper operation. The repairs and maintainability of almost all electronic/electrical equipment require checks by Test Equipment.
If we use these test equipment properly, it helps in reducing the service and maintenance at frequent intervals of time and hence results in lesser system unavailability during the period of repairs.
Familiarity with a test-equipment is a must if you need to be quick in DI/DR (defect identification and defect rectification). It will not be wrong to say that you can achieve proficiency on an electrical-equipment only when you master its relative test-equipment.
Can you identify the above test equipment(s), If not, then don’t worry?
There are many advanced testing types of equipment developed using the most innovative technologies and are being used in almost all types of electrical and electronic industries for checking estimated results and operation of electronics projects or devices.
Gallon Electric can be the best choice for its ability to offer various types of devices like –
Oscilloscopes are a vital tool in the arsenal of the electronic devices engineer or tester. An oscilloscope is an item of electronic device examination equipment that enables waveforms to be seen and, in this way, makes it significantly simpler to see any type of troubles occurring in an electronic device’s circuit.
Because of the advantages which they possess, oscilloscopes are an essential piece of electronic devices examination equipment for any type of electronic devices research laboratory or area of screening electronics equipment whether within RF style, basic electronics circuit style, electronics manufacturing, solution, fixing or anywhere that electronic circuits and also the waveforms on them require to be explored.
The name oscilloscope originates from the truth that it makes it possible for oscillations to be seen. Often the name cathode-ray oscilloscope or CRO was used. The reason for this was that cathode ray tubes (CRT) were made use of to present the waveforms. Nowadays these test instruments just often tend to be described as oscilloscopes, or simply ranges.
The function of an oscilloscope is to be able to present waveforms on some kind of display. In the normal mode of operation, time is displayed along the X-axis (horizontal axis), and also amplitude is shown along the Y-axis (upright axis). In this way, it is feasible to see a digital waveform on an oscilloscope may be envisaged. The waveform could be likened to that of the surges on traveling along the surface area of a fish pond when a stone is gone down right into it. By seeing a waveform in this way it is possible to see analyze the procedure of the circuit and also uncover why any kind of troubles might exist
Signals are sent from one place to another via a medium. These signals can be information signals, voltage signals, current signals, and so on. When the range traveled by the signal increases the stamina of the signal progressively reduces. This steady loss of strength of signals via the medium is called Attenuation.
Though viewed as a difficulty for long-distance transfer of signals, this sensation is located to be valuable in many various other tasks. The tool which is developed to minimize the power of signals without disrupting its waveform is called as “Attenuator”.
The attenuator is very utilized after signal generator circuits. It assists in attenuating or reducing the stamina of high-level signals prior to using them to the Antenna circuits. An attenuator is a two-port digital gadget. It is created using resistors to weaken or undermine a signal. Attenuators are passive circuits; they function with no power supply. These are offered both as taken care of attenuator with taken care of attenuation level and as a continually changing attenuator. As opposed to amplifiers get portion, the attenuator provides a loss portion. The quantity of depletion is gauged in decibels
Battery testers are digital gadgets created to check the staying ability of a battery’s total charge. In contrast to popular belief, they do not check the voltage– just the remaining capacity.
Every battery has a direct current. Battery testers function by using a load and keeping track of the voltage feedback of the battery. This makes it possible for the device to identify how much power is left in the battery.
Perfect for both monitoring and troubleshooting, battery testers are utilized throughout a broad spectrum of applications and markets, consisting of:
- Industrial maintenance
- Facility maintenance
- Test and measurement
- DIY and domestic purposes
A multimeter, also known as a volt-ohm meter, is a portable tester used to measure electrical voltage, current (amperage), resistance, and various other values. Multimeters are available in analog and digital versions and serve for whatever from basic tests, like gauging battery voltage, to discovering mistakes as well as intricate diagnostics. They are among the devices favored by electricians for fixing electric issues on motors, devices, circuits, power products, as well as electrical wiring systems. DIYers likewise can discover to utilize multimeters for basic measurements around your house.
Multimeters are capable of several readings, depending on the model. Fundamental testers action voltage, amperage, as well as resistance as well as can be made use of to inspect connection, an easy test to confirm a full circuit. Advanced multimeters might check for all of the following values:
- AC (alternating current) voltage and amperage
- DC (direct current) voltage and amperage
- Resistance (ohms)
- Capacity (farads)
- Conductance (siemens)
- Duty cycle
- Frequency (Hz)
- Inductance (henrys)
- Temperature Celsius or Fahrenheit
A basic electronics device or instrument used to measure voltage or electrical potential difference between two points in electrical circuits is known as a voltmeter. There are two types of voltmeters: analog and digital. An analog voltmeter moves a pointer across a scale in proportion to the voltage of the electrical circuit. A digital voltmeter measures an unknown input voltage by converting the voltage to a digital value by using a converter and then displays the voltage in numeric form.
An electrical instrument that measures electrical resistance is known as an ohmmeter. The instrument used to measure a small value of resistance are micro-ohmmeters. Similarly, meg-ohmmeters are used to make large resistance measurements. Resistance values are measured in ohms (Ω). Originally, the ohmmeter is designed with a small battery to apply voltage to resistance.
It uses a galvanometer to measure the electric current through the resistance. The scale of the galvanometer was marked in ohms (Ω) because the fixed voltage from the battery assures that the resistance decreases and the current through the meter increases.
When we talk about Data Acquisition, generally abbreviated as either DAQ or DAS, we are referring to the process of making dimensions of physical phenomena and recording them in some fashion in order to evaluate them.
Data procurement is normally approved to be distinct from earlier kinds of recording to tape or paper charts.
Unlike those approaches, the signals are converted from the analog domain name to the electronic domain name and afterward recorded to a digital medium such as ROM, flash media, or hard disk drives.
Modern digital information procurement systems consist of 4 necessary components that create the entire measurement chain of physics sensations:
- Signal Conditioning
- Analog-to-Digital Converter)
- Computer with DAQ software for signal logging and analysis
A function generator is a detailed form of signal generator that has the ability to generate waveforms with typical forms. Unlike RF generators and a few others that just develop sine waves, the function generator is able to develop recurring waveforms with a variety of common forms.
Specifically, it can be made to become a sine wave generator, square wave generator, and triangular wave generator.
Likewise, a function generator may be able to differ the attributes of the waveforms, altering the length of the pulse, i.e., the mark space proportion, or the ramps of the various edges of triangular or sawtooth waveforms, but it is only able to create the waveforms that are constructed into the function generator. It cannot be set to produce added waveforms – an approximate waveform generator, AWG is needed for this.
In addition to just producing the waveforms themselves, this type of test instrument has the capacity to add a DC balance out to the signal. This can be extremely helpful in a number of screening applications.
Typically function generators are only able to run at reasonably low frequencies, some only running to regularities of around 100kHz, although more expensive test tools can operate at higher frequencies, approximately 20 or 30MHz.
Digital Pattern Generator
A digital generator is electronic testing equipment or software used to generate digital electronics stimuli. Digital electronics stimuli are a specific type of electrical waveform varying between two conventional voltages corresponding to two logic gates (either 1 or 0, low or high). The function of the digital pattern generator is to stimulate the inputs of an electronic device. For that purpose, the voltage levels are generated by a digital pattern generator are compared to I/O standards of digital electronics: TTL, LVTTL, and LVDS. It is also known as a logic source because it is a source of synchronous digital stimulus
It generates a signal for testing digital electronics at the logic level. This generator also produces a single shot or repetitive signals in which some sort of triggering source takes place ( internally or externally)
A pulse generator is either an electronic circuit or a piece of electronic test equipment used to generate electrical pulses in different shapes: mostly used for tests at the analog or electrical level. Pulse generators are used to control the width, frequency, delay based on the low and high voltage levels of the pulses and with respect to internal and external triggering. There are three types of pulse generators namely optical pulse generators, bench pulse generators, and microwave pulses.
FIBER OPTIC TESTER
After the fiber cables are mounted as well as ended, it’s time for testing. You will certainly require to check for continuity, end-to-end loss and then repair the problems.
If it is a long outside plant cable with intermediate splices, you will possibly intend to validate the specific splices with an OTDR, because that’s the only means to make certain that each one is good.
In this list, we will certainly present the most usual sorts of fiber optic testers.
TYPES OF FIBER OPTIC TESTERS
- Fiber identifiers
- Light sources and power meters
- Connector inspection (microscopes)
- Spectrum Analyzers
- Visual fault locators
LCR Meter name itself indicates that it is used to measure the inductance, capacitance and resistance of electronics components. The inductance, capacitance, and resistance are denoted by the letters L, C, and R so it is named as LCR Meter. A variety of meters are made available in the market, but simple versions of LCR meters indicate impedance only for converting the values to capacitance or inductance.
More designs are available and used to measure the capacitance or inductance, and also the equivalent series resistance of capacitors, and the Q factor of inductive components. These conditions make the LCR meters valuable for measuring the quality and overall performance of the component.
The Future of Test and Measurement Equipment
The emergence of IoT, modular instrumentation, and other complex technologies is expected to drive the growth of the T&M industry in the future due to the need for the cost-effectiveness of the devices, reduced development times, and greater performance efficiency.
Research and development of software upgrades and high-end communication technologies require better flexibility, higher measurement speeds, precise functionality, and effective real-time testing. These requirements can be met with the development of better testing and measurement equipment.
The T&M market is expected to experience growth as industries such as IoT, big data analytics, and 5G technologies grow. High-speed digital standards, power applications, new software models, the evolution of software-as-a-service (SaaS), and cloud licensing are expected to revolutionize the trends in testing and measurement. The future of the test and measurement industry features a plethora of growth opportunities that market participants must keep their eye on.
What to expect from Gallon Electric?
Gallon Electric can be your trusted supplier of Test and Measurements related components and devices because of its best price & quality and we are also committed to ensuring better technical support for you.
With all the risk awaiting you when purchasing Test and Measurements related components and devices globally, you definitely want to contract with a genuine and a trusted wholesaler that will help you place orders and see your order delivered. That is exactly what Gallon Electric offers you.
Why Gallon Electric?
Test and Measurements related components and devices for the smart and modern industry and business farm.
Gallon Electric can be your trusted supplier for Test and Measurements related components and devices because of its best price & quality and we are also committed to ensuring better technical support for you.
Gallon Electric is committed to providing customers with authorized genuine Test and Measurements related components and devices at the least risk of counterfeit. We can provide full traceability on the commercial components sold. From sales to shipping Gallon Electric is committed to meeting your requirements for the right product, on time
Gallon Electric can be your trusted supplier for Test and Measurements related components and device buying because of its best price & quality and we are also committed to ensuring better technical support for you. Gallon Electric commits to quality products, high service, and timely delivery to our customers.