New and experienced users alike can appreciate the more than 40 Express VIs that incorporate functionality into interactive virtual instruments to deliver measurement capabilities in easy-to-configure dialogs requiring little or no programming. Add-on toolsets increase the number of VI sets for functions such as database connectivity, advanced measurement analysis, and complex report generation.
LabVIEW 7 Express features redesigned NI-DAQ driver framework and two new interactive assistants for data acquisition and instrument control. On computer-based data acquisition systems, the DAQ Assistant helps configure and define difficult or complicated data acquisition tasks with a few mouse clicks. For GPIB, serial, VXI, and other traditional instruments, the Instrument I/O Assistant delivers interactive instrument control, autoparsing of data, and automatic LabVIEW code generation.
Three different LabVIEW packages have been developed: the Base Package, the Full Development System, and the Professional Development System. The Base Package, the minimum LabVIEW configuration, is designed for developing basic data acquisition, instrument control, and data-presentation applications.
The Full System contains the functionality of the base package plus the tools needed to develop instrumentation systems. The measurement analysis libraries add digital signal processing, measurement analysis functions, and linear algebraic and mathematical functions.
The Full System also provides functions for direct access to DLLs, .NET/ActiveX, and other external code. Additional features include Web server and publishing tools; advanced report-generation tools; 3-D surface, line, and contour graphs; and custom graphics and animation.
The Professional System encompasses the functionality of the Full System. It also incorporates tools to facilitate the development of high-end instrumentation systems for developers working in teams, users developing large suites of VIs, or programmers needing to adhere to stringent quality standards.
In addition to the three development systems, LabVIEW 7 Express offers four add-on modules:
- FPGA Module
The FPGA module extends LabVIEW development to enable custom hardware configurations. It features high-speed deterministic execution of block diagrams in silicon on a PXI-7831R reconfigurable I/O board, simultaneous execution of parallel tasks, and tools for quickly creating host interfaces for embedded FPGA applications.
With the FPGA module, you can define hardware logic in LabVIEW and download the application to NI reconfigurable I/O devices to create custom hardware for prototyping, device simulation, custom protocol interfaces, and closed-loop control. Because the diagram executes in hardware, you have immediate control over all I/O signals for user-configurable timing, synchronization, and onboard decision-making.
- PDA Module
The PDA module provides graphical development for Palm and Pocket PC OS PDAs. It communicates with external devices through IrDA, serial communications, and wireless Ethernet and features built-in emulation and debugging tools.
Rather than requiring a new program for a specific PDA device, this module builds VIs for use on desktop computers and PDA devices. Then, LabVIEW 7 Express automatically compiles the VIs to run on the selected target and downloads the completed application to the PDA for field test systems, remote control and monitoring systems, and portable data acquisition systems.
- Real-Time Module
The newest version of the real-time module incorporates high-level tools such as the RT Communication Wizard to simplify development of host-target data exchange and application templates. Built-in file caching maximizes I/O performance.
The module integrates with the NI PXI-7831R reconfigurable I/O device and the NI PCI-7041/6040E real-time plug-in board. Support is provided for third-party PXI/CompactPCI hardware with NI-VISA and third-party local display hardware through instrument drivers and serial connectivity.
- Datalogging and Supervisory Control Module
For building and maintaining distributed monitoring and control systems with LabVIEW 7 Express, the datalogging and supervisory control module offers a faster historical database fully compliant with industry standards such as SQL 92 and ODBC 2.5 and built-in security tools. New interactive tools view and manage data from multiple computers.
The new Image Navigator featuring more than 4,000 graphs improves development, and at least 35 revised shipping examples help to engineer and optimize the system. Flexibility in searching and extracting data and enhanced reliability and protection for datalogging applications round out the list of benefits.
LabVIEW 7 Express is available for Windows 2000/NT/XP/98, Mac, OS, Linux, and Sun Solaris. English, Japanese, German, and French versions are offered, and documentation for Korean is available for the first time.
LabVIEW 7 Express: from $995; PDA, FPGA, Real-Time, and Datalogging and Supervisory Modules: $1,995 each. National Instruments, www.rsleads.com/306ee-233
Return to EE Home Page
Published by EE-Evaluation Engineering
All contents © 2003 Nelson Publishing Inc.
No reprint, distribution, or reuse in any medium is permitted
without the express written consent of the publisher.