Oscilloscope - Electrical Engineering Gate

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Wednesday, January 2, 2019


              An oscilloscope, previously called an oscillograph, and informally known as a scope, CRO (for cathode-ray oscilloscope), or DSO(for the more modern digital storage oscilloscope), is a type of electronic test instrument that allows observation of constantly varying signal voltages, usually as a two-dimensional plot of one or more signals as a function of time. Other signals (such as sound or vibration) can be converted to voltages  and displayed
Oscilloscopes are used to observe the change of an electrical signal over time, such that voltage and time describe a shape which is continuously graphed against a calibrated scale. The observed waveform can be analyzed for such properties as amplitude, frequency,rise time, time interval, distortion and others. Modern digital instruments may calculate and display these properties directly. Originally, calculation of these values required manually measuring the waveform against the scales built into the screen of the instrument.
The oscilloscope can be adjusted so that repetitive signals can be observed as a continuous shape on the screen. A storage oscilloscope allows single events to be captured by the instrument and displayed for a relatively long time, allowing observation of events too fast to be directly perceptible.
Oscilloscopes are used in the sciences, medicine, engineering, and telecommunications industry. General-purpose instruments are used for maintenance of electronic equipment and laboratory work. Special-purpose oscilloscopes may be used for such purposes as analyzing an automotive ignition system or to display the waveform of the heartbeat as an electrocardiogram.
Before the advent of digital electronics, oscilloscopes used cathode ray tubes (CRTs) as their display element (hence were commonly referred to as CROs) and linear amplifiers for signal processing. Storage oscilloscopes used special storage CRTs to maintain a steady display of a single brief signal. CROs were later largely superseded by digital storage oscilloscopes (DSOs) with thin panel displays, fastanalog-to-digital converters and digital signal processors. DSOs without integrated displays (sometimes known as digitisers) are available at lower cost and use a general-purpose digital computer to process and display waveforms.

Cathode-ray oscilloscope (CRO)

          The earliest and simplest type of oscilloscope consisted of a cathode ray tube, a vertical amplifier, a timebase, a horizontal amplifier and apower supply. These are now called "analog" scopes to distinguish them from the "digital" scopes that became common in the 1990s and 2000s.
Analog scopes do not necessarily include a calibrated reference grid for size measurement of waves, and they may not display waves in the traditional sense of a line segment sweeping from left to right. Instead, they could be used for signal analysis by feeding a reference signal into one axis and the signal to measure into the other axis. For an oscillating reference and measurement signal, this results in a complex looping pattern referred to as a Lissajous curve. The shape of the curve can be interpreted to identify properties of the measurement signal in relation to the reference signal, and is useful across a wide range of oscillation frequencies.

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