Test-Measurement (Page 2)

When Instruments are designed a analog front end is essential and also as most equipment have digital or microcontroller interface the analog circuit needs to have digital access. The Circuits DACT0008 and DACT0009 are both useful in building instruments which have digital control.

Precision Attenuator with Digital Control

The Circuit DACT0008 is a programmable attenuator and the digital control can be a remote dip switch, a CMOS Logic Output like the A-B-C-D outputs of a decade counter, or an I/O port of a uC like 80C31.

The heart of the circuit is the popular OP07 OpAmp with Ultra Low Offset in the inverting configuration, 4052 a CMOS analog multiplexer switch enables the gain change, the innovation of the circuit is that the on resistance ( around 100 ohms) of 4052 switch is bypassed so that no error is introduced by its use.

The resistors used R1 to R6 can be 0.1% 50ppm if you will use a 3 ½ DPM i.e. + /- 1999 counts ( approx. 11 bit ), but for 4 ½ DPM ( approx. 14 bit ) you may need to have trimpots2 in place of R3, R4, R5 & R6 gain selection resistors to properly calibrate to required accuracy but for testing or trials use 1% 100ppm MFR resistors but the errors will be around 1%.

Precision Attenuator with digital control

b. Output

Output connect to DPM 7107/7135 or any other A/D Convertor or OpAmp Stage. Use a buffer at output if output has to be loaded by a value less than 1Meg. Use an inverting buffer if input leads have to have polarity where gnd is -In. See DACT0009 for details.

c. 4052 CMOS Switch

The 4052/51/53 Analog Multiplexers have an on Resistance of around 100E the highlight of the circuit is that the CMOS on resistance comes in series with the opamp output source resistance, which produces no error at output.

Digital Control Options

A and B can be controlled by I/O port of uC, like 80C31 so that the uC can Control gain. A and B can be given to Counters like 4029/4518 to scroll gain digitally. A and B can be connected to DIP switch or thumbwheel switch.

When Instruments are designed a analog front end is essential and also as most equipment have digital or microcontroller interface the analog circuit needs to have digital access. The Circuits DACT0008 and DACT0009 are both useful in building instruments which have digital control.
This circuit DACT0009 is similar to DACT0008 but gains of upto 100 can be realized in this configuration, this is useful for signal conditioning of low mV outputs of transducers. The gain selection resistors R3 to R6 can be selected by the user and can be anywhere from 1K to 1M and can also be trimpots for obtaining gains as required by user, the resistor values shown are for decade gains e.g. for an auto ranging DPM.

Precision Amplifier with Digital Control

R1 and C1 reduce ripple in input and also snubs transients, ZD1 and ZD2 Zeners clamp input to +/- 4.7V the input current is limited by R1 lastly C1 and C2 are decoupling capacitors. The OpAmp U3 is used to increase the input impedance so that very low mV inputs are not loaded on measurement, the user can terminate the inputs with a resistor of his choice like 10M or 1M to avoid floating of the inputs when no measurement is being made. U5 is used as an Inverting buffer to restore polarity of the input and U4 is used as a buffer on the output of 4052 because loading it by resistance of value less than 1M will cause an error. An alternative is use R7 = R8 =1M and remove U4 but this may not be ideal. Gains of greeter than 100 may not be practical because at 100 gain itself a 100uV offset will be around 10mV at the output (100uV*100) this can be trimmed using the offset null option in the OP07, connect a trimpot between 1 and 8 and connect wiper to +5.

Precision Amplifier with Digital Control

For better performance use ICL7650 ( not pin compatible ) instead of OP07 and use +/- 7.5V instead of +/-5V supply.

Eight steps for gain or attenuation can be added by using two 4051 and by using Pin 6 Inhibit on 4051/52 limitless steps can be added by cascading many 4051,52,53 as Pin 6 works like a chip select.

Some extended applications of this circuits are……. Error correction in Transducer amplifiers by correcting gain. Auto ranging in DMM. Sensor selection or Input type selection in Process control. Digitally Preset power supplies or electronic loads. Programmable Precision mV or mA sources. PC or uC or uP based instruments. Data loggers and Scanners.

This indicates like LM3914 in dot-mode. It is a drawing i made made to troubleshoot a gadget, around two decades ago. Strangely it had a echo of a design i had made into a 7107 dpm years before that. Now i am scanning all my drawing and notes, useful or not. Clean or with errors. Many Errors = 1 Blunder. Some projects i made have been expensive Blunders. So see them with a skeptic eye, fix them, try them. Thats all for now.

See the Circuit Full Size – Microohm Meter with LED Analog Bar

Microohm Meter with LED Analog Bar

This has a 9V battery power. The 555 spins and a negative voltage for Opamp is created. This is a Low Offset amp of OP37 of Precision Monolithics, Inc PMI an early innovator. This diff-amp amplifies the uV of a 4 wire resistance measurement.

Now the current pump is the 2N2222 you see above the OP37. The FET and 555 do synchronous rectification. The LM324 is the Indicator and Analog to LED Dot-Bar Converter. The probes are Gold Plated, or use solid gold pins if you have them in plenty.

A PC based Analog Voltmeter. The Printer Port or Parallel Port Interface is used to acquire high resolution analog data using ICL7135. This is a method of getting analog data into your PC. This is only of Educational Value. Applications include Data Loggers and PC based Process Monitors, chart recorders. (USB, Wireless Interfaces and Tablet Computers are in vogue today

ICL7135 to Printer port Interface

The four Digit Drive outputs and four BCD outputs of the Multiplexed Display Driver of 7135, along with A-D status output which is also four, are routed to four input pins on printer port via three 74HCT373 Digital Switches. This is because we have less Input pins on Port and 4 are shared by making one 74HCT373 transparent and others High Impedance when PC takes a reading. So the three sets of four outputs of 7135 can be read sequentially.

ICL7135 to Printer port Interface

74HCT139 U9A which is controlled by the PC program can select U3, U4 or U5 for sending data to 4 pins on printer port. Data sent on the eight output pins of printer port can be latched by U10B into U6. This eight outputs of U6 can drive relays or lamps.

The ICL7135 details can be seen here 41/2 A/D with BCD ICL7135 . This Mixed device was far ahead of its times, a product of Intersil.

This is the best Instrumentation OpAmp, Great CMRR, ensure supply has no ripple and keep analog and digital grounds separate. Ri can be replaced with a trimpot and resistor to alter gain. Connect a preset ends to pins 1 and 8 and preset wiper to VCC for Offset Null when high gains are configured.

Thermocouple and Pt-100 RTD

The Input zeners and diodes form a protective clamp for all voltages above VCC-VDD. If supply is changed to +12 -12 change zeners to 12V zeners. Use similar Zeners at output to protect Output from being zapped by overvoltages or high energy – voltage*frequency transients. Add plastic capacitors across Rf for damping AC operation or ripple. Also avoid floating inputs by providing a bias.

3 Op-Amp Differential Instrumentation Amp

Vout = (Vp – Vn) * (2Rf+Ri)/Ri

Related Reading

I wanted to design a logic probe as a tutorial, but there were many good ones in the web so i have tried to design a single digit voltmeter. This circuit is a design, i am unable to test it now, later if i test it and find mistakes i will update this page. You can help me by pointing out the errors.

Data Interface – Printer Port, Virtual Instrumentation.

Single Digit Voltmeter with LM311

First bear it in mind that it is a single digit voltmeter which is 0-9 counts only on the positive side, that is it can measure +0 to +9V DC +/- 1V error. That may not be practical for the cost of the components above. It may be used as a toy logic probe. The reason for the circuit is not for usage, but to give design ideas. The methodology used is Gut Feel – Thumb Rule method.

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This is a modification of a mV Source that can be whipped up easily. You could use a DPM or Multimeter to read the output. The ability of this circuit to perform well depends on the quality of all the MFR resistors and the MultiTurn Pot. Use a Bourns 10T Pot.

Good Soldered Joints, Keep all Resistors and temperature sensitive parts from Transformer and Regulators. Keep Ripple in power supplies low, no EMI tolerated. If you have problems, make a Battery Powered Unit. Shield well in case you are in a Electrically Noisy environment.

Millivolt Source In this link see at bottom this circuit millivolt source, pdf.

I have put a better offset null, OP07 has around 75uV offset error which may show as +/- 1 count error on 4 1/2 DPM 19999 counts. You can skip it if you are using a 3 1/2 digit DPM as the error will not show, even it 4 1/2 it may be upto 2 counts only.

R9, P4 and R10 are for balance and offset as you said you can use it that way. (old circuit)

C7 can be a low leakage plastic cap, even a tantalum electrolytic is ok, aluminum electrolytic may cause a very small error.

Q1 can be any npn that can take 100mA current, do not use RF devices, 2N2222 is best.

If you use a DPM protect DPM inputs with clamping diodes or zeners or an error in bread-boarding may send +/- 12V to DPM and it may be damaged. Some DPMs come with protection like DMMs. use the circuit in del2003.pdf in analog section to make a 4 1/2 DPM.

Also in 2000mV range do not short outputs as the Q1 may get damaged, and in 200mV and 20mV range the output impedance is 10 ohms which is good for calibrating any high input impedance instrumentation like a process indicator etc. loading with 100K 10K will cause error. Most instruments are very high impedance so it is fine.

U3 LF 356 is used as a constant current source (sink as the current is negative). R4, R5, R7 and R9 set the four resistance ranges by changing the constant current in decade steps. R2 is for calibration of resistance range. The A-B digital control of 4052 selects the range.

Resistance measurement – DMM Project

Let voltage current and resistance sockets be separate and of different color or use a high voltage electrical rotary switch or relays if you want the same sockets switched. D1, D2 and R8 are to ensure that the FET can be turned off, as the opamp swings from +/- 3.5V only, with some FET it needs to be tweaked.

Resistance measurement - DMM Project

When you keep the current constant, the voltage across a resistor is directly proportional to the Resistor Value. This can be scaled to gat a usable reading on a Digital Voltmeter.