Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Syscomp SIG-101 Signature Analyzer for Educators

The Syscomp SIG-101 Signature Analyzer is of interest both to educators
and to those who have to do quality control or troubleshooting of circuit boards.
Analog signature analysis is a technique whereby an AC voltage
is injected into the test point of a circuit board.  The voltage and

current are plotted on an XY display, and the resultant pattern is a 'signature'
of that particular test point.  This pattern may be compared with the pattern
obtained from a known good board at the same test
point.  If the patterns
do not match, the test board has some defect.  Signature analysis is popular in

production test because it requires no understanding of the circuit operation,
and so it can be used by unskilled personnel.

The SIG-101 SIG-101 is based on the popular CircuitGear Mini CGM-101,
which includes an oscilloscope, waveform generator, spectrum analyzer,
bode plotter and digital IO port in one package.  All those features continue
to be available in the SIG-101. An impedance vs frequency plotter will be
available with the next software release.

In several respects, the Syscomp SIG-101 is an advance over existing
signature analysis instruments.

        - it's a fraction of the cost of existing instruments

        - the frequency range of the test signal is continuous and extended

          over a wide range, which allows a wider range of useful

          measurements of impedance.

        - the test voltage and measured current are calibrated, and so the

          results can be translated into component values.

        - as usual for Syscomp, the software is open source and runs on the
                  Linux, Windows and Mac operating systems.

The product page has the technical manual, datasheet, and a paper on
signature analysis. The unit is currently available for $399.95 through
our webpage store

6 exercises on various aspects of test equipment and electronics: 
Introduction to the Oscilloscope, The Signal Generator, Probes,
Exploring the Microphone, The Capacitor in the Time Domain,
The Spectrum Analyzer These are organized as exercises that a hobbyist
or student can do to learn key concepts of the measuring instruments and
electronics.  Based on years of experience in teaching these ideas in a
college environment, each exercise is designed to be self-contained,
completed in one session of an hour or so, and provide fundament information. 
You are welcome to use them in classes or as an individual guide. 
The exercises can be found in the Education section of our website at this link.

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