Electronic Design

Power Analyzer Delivers DC Voltages While Boosting Productivity

Why didn't anybody think of this before? Agilent's N6705A dc power analyzer combines a set of up to four variable power supplies, a digital multimeter (DMM), a scope, an arbitrary waveform generator (AWG), and a datalogger. With it, you can supply dc to your designs while making every conceivable voltage, current, or power measurement you can think of, as well as some new ones you haven't.

The N6705A is a real time-saver. There's no need to search for and gather up the necessary individual power supplies and other test instruments you need to power up your device under test (DUT). Since low-power consumption is a key design goal, power measurements are critical to testing. The N6705A pulls everything together for you in one place, simplifying and expediting the testing process. And you can have your test results in minutes rather than hours, all without having to program anything.

The instrument can use up to four of Agilent's N6700 modular power supplies, which are available in a range of voltage and current outputs. There are 16 basic dc sources in 50-, 100-, and 300-W sizes with voltages to 100 V and currents to 20 A. Another option is one of three high-performance dc sources in the same power ranges with voltages to 60 V and currents to 20 A.

Then there are two precision dc power sources in 50- and 100-W models with voltages to 50 V and currents to 3 A. These modules plug into the main frame of the N6705A. Each modular supply features autoranging, high-speed voltage change (160 µs), 512 voltage/current steps, a digitizer, and built-in relays for isolation and polarity reversal.

The built-in AWG can modulate any power module with an output speed of 160 µs per step voltage change and with a bandwidth up to 5 kHz. You can generate high dc transients or simulate line ripple. Also, users can measure the dc output voltage or current with the DMM or oscilloscope and send them to a datalogger for capture and subsequent analysis.

A built-in 64-Mbyte memory stores any captured data. With a capture rate of 50 kHz on all channels simultaneously, that translates to 30 minutes of data storage. External storage can be added via a USB port. Additionally, users can capture test setups, test data, or screen captures to a front-panel USB thumb drive or an external PC.

A big red front-panel emergency stop button is provided to instantly halt any test if smoke occurs. Furthermore, interfaces include USB 2.0, 10/100BaseT Ethernet, and GPIB. The unit also fully complies with the LXI class C specification, so it can be used in automated manufacturing test situations as well as a general-purpose R&D bench instrument. Users also can tackle a number of other tasks:

• Set up and view critical turn-on/turn-off sequences

• Control dc bias supply ramp-up/ramp-down rates

• Measure and display voltage and current versus time to visualize power into the DUT

• Measure startup or inrush current

• Measure peak power requirements

• Generate dc bias supply transients and disturbances to see how the DUT responds

• Log data for seconds, minutes, hours, or days to see current consumption and/or capture anomalies.

If you're on a tight schedule and need a full but delicate test of a critical DUT, this is an ideal unit to use. The base price is $6500, and the dc power modules vary from $450 to $2250 each. Delivery is two weeks ARO.

Agilent Technologies Inc.


TAGS: Components
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