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Introduction to oscilloscopes

Triggering 10x probes DC coupling vs AC coupling X-Y mode

Triggering

Trigger Slope: Positive/negative: rising


or falling edge

Trigger mode: Normal: stops if cannot


detect trigger

Trigger source: Ch 1 Ch 2 Ext/Ext 5 Line:

Auto: keeps going even if


cannot detect trigger

Single: run/stop button

Triggering
1.5

y = sin(t)+0.4cos(10t) ch1 A B

0.5

-0.5

-1

-1.5

0 2

10

The sync output of function generator provides a clean square wave at the same frequency as the output

1.5

ext

0.5

-0.5

-1

10

Importance of external trigger: recovering signal from noise by averaging

(a)
Signal(mV)

40 20 0 -20 -40 0

Blue = a single trace Red = 262144 averages

0.5

1.5

Time(mS)

(b)
Signal(mV)

4 3 2 1 0 0

262,144 averages

initial slope
0.5 1 1.5 2

Time(mS)

Coupling: DC vs AC

DC coupled

AC coupled
Removes all DC information To observe small AC on top of large DC

oscilloscope

oscilloscope

zc = 1/jC

f3db = 1/2RC

Coupling: DC vs AC
Low frequency waveforms can be severely distorted by the high pass filter

AC coupled DC coupled
1.5 1 0.5 volta ge(V)

10 Hz
voltage(V)

1.5 1 0.5

80 Hz

0 -0.5 -1 -1.5

0 -0.5 -1 -1.5

-0.1

-0.05

0 Time(s )

0.05

0.1

-0.1

-0.05

0 Time(s )

0.05

0.1

Oscilloscope probes

circuit

oscilloscope 30 pF/foot

R1 Vac

Ccable Rin

Vout
For scope:

Cin

Rin = 1 M Cin ~ 20 pF

R1
Z1

Vac

Rin

Cin + Ccable
Z2

Z1 and Z2 are frequency dependent and changes for each circuit

Oscilloscope impedance and stray capacitance can load the circuit R1 Vac Rin
Cin + Ccable

=0 Vac

R1 Rin

= Vac

R1

Example:

Cin + Ccable R1 = 10k


C = 50 pF f3db = 1/2RC = 320 kHz

dB Low pass filter The signal is distorted! log(f)

Advantages of 10x probe 1. Input impedance 10 times larger (reduce loading) 2. Frequency independent (almost, if tuned correctly)

Resistive part:
R1
9M oscilloscope

Vac

probe 1M For dc and low frequencies, the 10x probe act as 10:1 divider. Input resistance is 10x higher. Cstray = Ccable + Cin ~50pF

How to eliminate frequency dependence? 9M

Add capacitor to probe

1M

Cstray ~50pF

Consider the resistive and capacitive parts separately 9M oscilloscope

1M probe

Cstray ~50pF

9M 9Xstray

1M Both dividers are 1:10, independent of frequency They give the same output voltage Xstray Xstray+ 9Xstray 1/j Cstray 1/j Cstray+ 9/jCstray Xstray

Remember Quiz 1:

Both dividers give the same output voltage

can join the output Xc =1/jC

9M

9Xstray

9M

9Xstray

Cprobe ~ 50pF/9 = 5.6 pF

1M

Xstray

1M Xstray

Cstray ~50pF

probe 9M

oscilloscope 10x probe divides signal by 10. To display the actual signal, we need to tell the scope to multiply its measurement by 10.

1M Cprobe ~5.6pF

Cstray ~50pF

Tuning the probe


The oscilloscope provides a square wave output on its front panel, labeled as probe adjust A square wave can be Fourier decomposed into a sum of many frequencies. If the probe and scope attenuates all frequencies by 10, we should get back a square wave.

Tune probe capacitance until the scope shows a good square wave.

Display: YT: displays Ch1 and/or Ch2 as a function of time XY: displays Ch1 as a function of Ch 2
x(t ) = A cos(1t 1 ) y (t ) = B cos(2t 2 )
2

Example:

2 1

1 = 2, 1 = 2
y = B/A x

1 0

-1

YT
0
2

XY

-1

-2
-2

2
4

4
6

6
8

8
10

10

1 = 2, 2 = 0, 1 = /2
x(t ) = A cos(1t ) y (t ) = B sin(1t )

YT
0 2 4 6 8 10

-1

XY

-2

Lissajous Curves

x(t ) = A cos(1t 1 )

y (t ) = B cos(2t 2 )

Checklist for oscilloscope operation 1. Make sure probe compensation is set to the correct value (1x, 10x) 2. If you cannot get signal on screen, press autoscale 3. Check DC/AC coupling 4. Check trigger source