More Special-Purpose Meters

Oscilloscopes

The oscilloscope was developed over 50 years ago. As a piece of test equipment, it was one of the most exciting advances in electrical testing at that time and still is. Ordinary analog and digital meters merely give numerical quantities, whereas the oscilloscope does that and in addition, gives a graphic picture of what the test signal looks like. The shapes, frequencies, amplitudes, phases, distortions, interference, and so on, all show up to be examined. One cycle or less of an AC signal, or multiple cycles, or even a stream of cycles can be examined. DC levels and combinations of DC and AC can be viewed.

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Meter Sensitivity and Accuracy

Every meter coil has a certain amount of dc resistance. The amount of resistance depends upon the number of turns on the coil and the size of the wire used to wind the coil. The strength of the magnetic field about a coil increases as the number of turns of the coil increases. Therefore, if more windings are placed on a meter coil, a small current can create a magnetic field strong enough to cause the coil to deflect full scale.

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Resistance Testing: Part 1

There are several different types of resistance tests. Resistance tests differ from voltage and current tests because they are rarely performed on a dynamic basis, that is, while the equipment is operating. Resistance tests are usually performed with the power off and usually with the component disconnected to make sure that there are no short circuits to cause misleading readings.

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