by Markus Schuster |
Situations often arise in practical measurement applications in which it would be helpful to be able to access individual signals regardless of the measurement system involved. For example if individual cell voltages are to be analysed with an external measurement system when monitoring the individual cell voltages of fuel cells.
The "MCM-IntelliProbe BreakOut" from SMART provides access to the individual signals. A single BreakOut module is designed for tapping 10 individual signals. Similarly to the MCM-IntelliProbe voltage measurement modules, these modules can also be simply connected together to cover a larger number of channels.
In addition to accessing the individual signals, the BreakOut modules can however also be used for simple stack simulation. For this purpose a total voltage is applied, and the current is then routed via an integrated resistor cascade. There is a voltage drop across each resistor which is then measured by the CVM system. This enables the measurement system chain to be started up and its functioning checked without actually having to connect up a real stack.
When ordering, our customers used to have to decide what they wanted: simulation or tapping of individual signals. We supplied them with different systems depending on the type of operation required. A smart idea from our development team has now put an end to all that:
Our new BreakOuts are fitted as standard with resistors and can be used for both modes of operation. To switch from signal tapping to simulation mode users simply have to pull out a small plug-in PCB, turn it through 180 degrees and plug it back in again.
That is not the only new feature: In the past, it was necessary to connect up a lot of little wires to transfer the last voltage of the first BreakOut module to the next module in simulation mode. A small spring contact now effects internal voltage transfer between the modules.
And finally we also gave some thought to the design and handling of the product. Two polyamide caps – the so-called BreakOut Holders – provide electrically safe termination of a module stack and permit screw attachment of the entire unit. Alternatively the modules can also be mounted on a DIN rail and secured in this manner.
The connectors we use take the form of insulated 2 millimetre jacks. This keeps the system to a manageable size and the wires are easy to connect up.
An MCM-IntelliProbe-BreakOut is a worthwhile addition to any CVM system. Please do not hesitate to contact me directly should you have any questions. My e-mail address is: firstname.lastname@example.org