Using the Waveform Creator application, arbitrary waveforms can be created with up to 100 steps in the profiles. These can be triggered to operate either via the communication interfaces, or the front panel. Electrical waveforms are created in order to test electrical and electronic equipment. These can be either repetitive or single-shot waveforms that are triggered by an external event. Arbitrary waveform generators differ to function generators in that the user can create custom waveforms by programming specific points in the waveform.
With the Genesys+ programmable power supplies, up to four arbitrary waveforms can be stored in internal memory cells to regulate the output voltage or current.
LIST and WAVE modes
The application has two programmable modes; LIST and WAVE.
In LIST mode, a step function can be entered using up to 100 points. In Figure 1, the output is set from 0 V to 5 V after a 20 ms delay from an external trigger. After 50 ms, the output is increased to 10 V for 60 ms before reducing back to 0 V.
Gradual output voltage or current changes are allowed in WAVE mode. As demonstrated in Figure 2, the output is set from 0 V to 5 V after a 20 ms delay from an external trigger. The output is increased to 10 V over 30 ms, and remains at 10 V for 20 ms before being reduced gradually to zero in 30 ms. In this example, the output repeats the process twice (COUN 2).
The Waveform Creator can be used to develop complex waveforms and set, view, and store all the values, triggers and repeat actions, as demonstrated in Figure 3.
The active memory cell number (1-4) is indicated on the front panel display of the Geneys+™. The Graphical User Interface (GUI) contains a Waveform Profile Generator, which can create more complex waveforms including sine, triangle and sawtooth, as seen in Figure 4.
Arbitrary waveforms can be used for a variety of applications including component device testing, medical imaging, automotive systems, and test and measurement systems. Figure 5 provides examples of arbitrary waveforms.
Parameterising signals is a method used to test components against low voltage waveforms by breaking down and simplifying the waveforms.
In automotive systems, tests such as ISO 16570 Part 4.6.3, Ford CI230 Part 17, Chrysler DC-10615 Part 7.4, GM GMW3172 Part 9.2.17, and JLR CI265 Part 16.1 are carried out to try to specify a waveform that is easy to define and reproduce.
As an example, the voltage waveform from a vehicle supply, which is produced by the combination of battery wires and started motor during engine start, can be simplified into a format that can be reproduced for standards testing.