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Functions of a Digital Oscilloscope

By Ewan Fisher Subscribe to RSS | March 14th 2012 | Views:

Fluctuations in the strength or force of the electrical signal may be displayed on a monitoring screen as either a peak or a dip above or below the centre of the screen which is classed as a “neutral” or an even signal.

Analogue Oscilloscopes have been used as part of a number of industries for many years since their beginnings in the late 19th Century but as digital information has become more common and useful the majority of devices which are now manufactured and distributed are in the form of a digital oscilloscope.

The vast difference between the two is the functions which they allow a user in their use and interpretation. Specifically, an analogue Oscilloscope gives the user the ability to interpret the signal in real time or immediately, whilst a digital Oscilloscope, such as those available at proto-PIC, gives a user the ability to record their findings for analysis later on.

Uses of a Digital Oscilloscope

Because of their usefulness and the benefit of being able to detect and interpret changes in electrical signal, digital oscilloscopes are used in a variety of settings throughout industry, science & research and medicine.

In the vast and fast growing world of electrics and electronics, Oscilloscopes are used to assess the efficiency of a power system. This can be for either safety reasons, such as the event of a suspected fault where work may be required but further investigation must be done prior to this beginning, or for quality control purposes where a daily or hourly monitoring may be needed to ensure continuity in the flow of the charge.

In mechanics, the Oscillator may be applied by a mechanic, engineer or manufacturer for the purpose of analysing vehicle vibrations.

Sound Engineers frequently use Oscillators to measure the frequency and strength of a sound wave. This is especially useful in production of music and media sound such as film or television when a sound is required to be significant but pleasant to a viewer or listener. Oscillators are used on a constant basis during live broadcasts such as radio or live television for the same purposes.

In research and scientific enquiry such as during seismology, Oscillators are used to study and detect tremors and plate movement.

The majority of the non-technical public are more likely to come into contact with Oscillators as pieces of medical equipment used to measure and assess changes in electrical heart function. This study is known as “Electrocardiography” and monitors are often applied when diagnosis, monitoring or assessment on a patient with a heart complaint is required. ECG’s are also used on expectant mothers to measure the heart beat of the baby.

Given the wide uses of Digital Oscillators, it’s little wonder that they are among the favoured and most popular equipment for many professionals.

Ewan Fisher - About Author:
Digital Oscilloscope

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