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Multifunction DAQ devices offer increased accuracy

Posted: 21 Aug 2006 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:National Instruments? M series? LabVIEW? data acquisition card? DAQ card?

National Instruments' latest DAQ devices

National Instruments (NI) has announced 12 isolated M and S Series multifunction DAQ devices, which the company said combine the safety of isolation and the timing, amplification and calibration technologies of existing M Series DAQ devices for increased accuracy.

According to NI, built-in isolation increases the safety of DAQ devices and eliminates common problems that affect measurement accuracy. The new multifunction devices promise 16bit accuracy, 250KSps sampling rates, 10V or 20mA analog inputs, 10V or 0-20mA analog outputs and 5V TTL/CMOS or 24V digital inputs and outputs.

These isolated M and S Series devices offer channel-to-channel or bank isolation with 1,950Vdc/1,400Vrms transient withstand for 5s to a PCI bus, the company said, which protects expensive equipment, the user and data from hazardous voltage spikes, transient signals and electrical noise. Isolation works by electrically separating the circuit's front end, where hazardous voltages can exist, from the rest of the DAQ system. Isolation is especially important when taking measurements from sensors in the proximity of wall power, large motors, high-voltage switches or other high-voltage lines.

Isolated M and S Series devices also reject common-mode voltages and prevent ground loops from forming, eliminating two common problems for DAQ system users, NI said. High common-mode voltages can make it impossible to measure the signal in a non-isolated DAQ system and can even damage the system. The new isolated M and S Series devices can measure from sensors with the signal plus common-mode voltages of up to 60V. Ground loops, which occur when there is a difference between the ground voltages of the measurement system and the signal being measured, can result in high currents flowing between the two grounds and can damage equipment and ruin accuracy.

The isolated M Series devices integrate seamlessly with NI LabVIEW and users can configure the devices using NI measurement and services software.

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