NI Week 2004: Two modules double sample rate, memory depth

Austin, TX—National Instruments (NI) unveiled two 200 MS/s modular instruments at NI Week 2004 that greatly extend NI's mixed-signal measurement capabilities.

By Control Engineering Staff August 18, 2004

Austin, TX— National Instruments (NI) unveiled two 200 MS/s modular instruments at NI Week 2004 that greatly extend NI’s mixed-signal measurement capabilities. Based on the company’s Synchronization and Memory Core (SMC), the modules double the available sample rate and memory depth of NI’s digitizer and arbitrary waveform generator product families. When combined with NI’s precision dc, RF and high-speed digital PXI instruments, these new modules reportedly are ideal for a variety of applications in consumer electronics, semiconductor, military/avionics, and scientific research.

‘Due to increasing production throughput and better accuracy requirements, we chose National Instruments modular instrumentation, along with MicroLEX Systems’ VideoMaster software, for our camera test and calibration,’ says Deepak Murji, senior test engineer for Baxall Ltd. ‘Based on our extensive evaluation and the comparison to traditional test methods, we can obtain more than 25% higher throughput and calibrate our products with higher accuracy.’

PXI-5124 12-bit, dual-channel digitizer and PXI-5422 16-bit arbitrary waveform generator use the latest commercial semiconductors to extend the SMC architecture by increasing sample rates to 200 MS/s and memory depth to 512 MB per channel. The new modules bring the advantages of NI’s modular instruments to an even broader set of applications by delivering accuracy, flexibility, and tight integration of mixed-signal I/O. PXI-5124 digitizer offers 75 dBc spurious-free dynamic range (SFDR) and 150 MHz bandwidth, while the PXI-5422 arbitrary waveform generator delivers less than 6% pulse aberration and a 1.8 nanosecond rise time.

Design and test engineers can use the new 200 MS/s digitizer and arbitrary waveform generator to quickly build stimulus/response systems anywhere in a product’s development flow using NI’s new SignalExpress interactive measurement software, as well as LabView 7.1 and NI’s TestStand test management software. With the Express technology available in each of these software packages, engineers can interactively configure the digitizer and arbitrary waveform generator with little programming, offering much faster system setup. Engineers can customize their measurement systems with the more than 400 measurement and analysis functions, including spectral measurements and analog and digital modulation. available in LabView 7.1.

All of NI’s mixed-signal modular instruments are built on the common SMC architecture, so they tightly synchronize with other SMC-based instruments, such as the company’s PXI-6552 100 MHz digital waveform generator/analyzer. With module-to-module jitter of less than 20 picoseconds rms, synchronization of the SMC makes high-performance mixed-signal or high-channel-count measurement systems possible. In addition, both new modules can import external sample clocks, reference clocks, and triggers through front panel connectors or the PXI trigger bus.

In general, NI’s modular instrumentation combines high-performance hardware, flexible software and innovative timing and synchronization technology for test and design applications. NI modular instrumentation includes:

  • High-resolution digitizers (eight to 14 bits, up to 200 MS/s);

  • Signal generators (up to 16 bits, 200 MS/s);

  • Digital waveform generator/analyzers (up to 100 MHz);

  • Digital multimeters (up to 6

  • RF vector signal generators and analyzers (up to 2.7 GHz)

  • Dynamic signal analyzers (up to 24 bits, 204.8 kS/s); and

  • Switching (multiplexers, matrices, and general purpose).

Control Engineering Daily News Desk
Jim Montague, news editor