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Precision Quiescent-Current Measurement with Q.series XL Slimline A108 2SC
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Precision Quiescent-Current Measurement with Q.series XL Slimline A108 2SC

Quiescent current measurement is essential across various industries, notably in the development of battery-powered devices, automotive electronics, and energy-efficient technologies. Also known as standby current, this crucial parameter measures the current in electronic systems during idle states, significantly impacting power consumption, battery longevity, and overall efficiency. Minor inaccuracies in its measurement can lead to considerable consequences.

Challenges of Quiescent Current Measurement

Developing and testing devices with DC or battery supply often involves fluctuating operating currents due to power management, sleep modes, and various active states. Traditional measurement technologies are often limited in this aspect.

Precise measurement of quiescent current is essential for optimizing battery life and ensuring the energy efficiency of devices, yet it poses several challenges:

  1. Range and Sensitivity: Quiescent current can vary significantly, from nanoamperes in sleep mode to several amperes during active operation. Instruments must be sensitive enough to detect low currents without sacrificing the ability to measure higher currents accurately.
  2. Accuracy and Resolution: High accuracy and resolution are essential due to the low magnitude of quiescent currents, as small variations can significantly impact device performance.
  3. Dynamic Current Changes: Rapid switching between power states in electronic devices requires measurement systems to adapt quickly without interrupting the power supply.
  4. Environmental Influence: External factors like temperature variations and electromagnetic interference can affect the accuracy of measurements, necessitating robust system designs that can mitigate these effects.
  5. Integration and Connectivity: Integrating the measurement system into existing test setups and ensuring compatibility with various data communication protocols is critical for streamlined operations.

The Quiescent-Current Measurement System

The Q.raxx XL Slimline A108 2SC Quiescent-Current Measurement System has been developed with these considerations in mind. It provides accurate and wide-ranging current measurements, crucial for applications in sectors like automotive control unit testing.

The primary strength of this system lies in its inline dynamic switching (auto-range) capability. This feature enables a seamless transition between quiescent (standby) and operating current measurements, which is essential for applications where uninterrupted power supply is crucial.

Key applications of this system include:

  • Measuring leakage currents,
  • Investigating complex sleep modes, such as standby for control units,
  • Assessing start-up behavior, including surge and inrush currents.

These functionalities make the system especially useful in scenarios where accurate and continuous power measurement is paramount.

The system offers:

  • Two channels dedicated to voltage measurement, boasting a range of ±60 V and providing fine measurement resolution down to 12 µV, ensuring detailed voltage analysis.
  • Two channels for current measurement, equipped to handle standby currents from nA up to 80 mA with dynamic switching capabilities for operating currents up to 5 A on channel 1 and up to 50 A on channel 2, with an impressive accuracy of 0.06% in the 80 mA range and 0.2% in the high Amp range.

Enhanced System Attributes

The A108 2SC performs without causing power loss to the test item, an essential feature for systems requiring a stable power supply over 10 VDC. It integrates a self-resetting overcurrent protection that is monitored by separate measuring channels, enhancing the system’s reliability and operational safety. The design includes forced ventilation to manage thermal loads effectively.

Connectivity and Integration

The Q.raxx XL Slimline A108 2SC is specifically designed for compatibility with an EtherCAT slave, featuring a built-in standard EtherCAT bus coupler. However, it also provides the option to connect to a Q.station UART (Universal Asynchronous Receiver/Transmitter), enhancing its flexibility in connectivity and data communication. This design ensures the A108 2SC is primed for effortless integration into a variety of testing setups.

Technical Overview

  • Measurement Channels: The system features two channels each for voltage and current measurement. Both channels have a 20 kS/s sampling rate, enabling real-time data capture.
    • Voltage Measurement: Capable of measuring up to ±60 V with an accuracy of ±25 mV and a resolution of 12 µV, this system is ideal for a wide range of voltage analysis tasks.
    • Current Measurement: It can measure quiescent/standby currents from the nA range up to 80 mA with high precision. Additionally, it offers dynamic switching to higher currents of 5 A and 50 A with an accuracy of 0.06% in the 80 mA range and 0.2% in the high Amp range, facilitating comprehensive analysis of power draw.
  • System Design: The system is designed with self-resetting overcurrent protection and specialized ventilation to ensure sustained integrity and performance.
  • Connectivity:
    • Features an EtherCAT slave for the XE version,
    • Offers external Q.station communication for the XL version via Ethernet to PC. The system is also compatible with additional interfaces such as CAN, OPC-UA, and more.

With a focus on precision, safety, and seamless integration, the Q.raxx XL Slimline A108 2SC Quiescent-Current Measurement System is a powerful tool for professionals seeking to optimize battery systems, vehicle communication buses, and automotive control units.

For a more detailed understanding of how the Q.raxx XL Slimline A108 2SC can enhance your measurement systems, please view the datasheet here.

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