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The cathode ray oscilloscope (CRO) provides a visual presentation of any waveform applied to the input terminal. The oscilloscope consists of the following major subsystems. • Cathode-ray tube(CRT) • Vertical amplifier • Horizontal amplifier • Sweep Generator • Trigger circuit • Associated power supply It can be employed to measure such quantities as peak voltage, frequency, phase difference, pulse width, delay time, rise time and fall time. 3.1.1 Basic Operation of Oscilloscope
Figure 1: Block diagram of a basic cathode-ray oscilloscope
Amplifier circuits are needed to increase the input signal to the voltage levels required to operate the tube because the signals measured using CRO are typically small. There are amplifier sections for both vertical and horizontal deflection of the beam. the output of the vertical amplifier is connected to the internal sync position of switch S1. the signal that is applied to the horizontal input terminal is amplified by the horizontal amplifier. the switch is set to internal sweep. The purpose of the sweep generator is to develop a voltage at the horizontal deflection plate that increase linearly with time. With the switch set to internal sync. which cause the beam to be deflected in the vertical plane. the output of the vertical amplifier is applied to the sweep generator.The basic parts of CRO are shown in Figure 1. As can be seen in Figure 1. This linearly increasing voltage. The signal is amplified and applied to the vertical deflection plate. for phase-shift measurements or to determine the frequency of a signal. causes the beam to be deflected equal distance horizontally per unit of time. When the instrument is used in the X-Y mode. as it is for normal operation of the oscilloscope. the left horizontal deflection plate (looking toward the screen) and the lower vertical deflection plate are sometimes connected to ground. Vertical Amplifier – amplify the signal at its input prior to the signal being applied to the vertical deflection plates Horizontal Amplifier – amplify the signal at its input prior to the signal being applied to the horizontal deflection plates. Sweep Generator – develop a voltage at the horizontal deflection plate that increase linearly with time 2 . In inexpensive. This signal triggers the sweep generator. except in low-cost oscilloscopes with a free-running sweep generator. A signal to be displayed on the CRT screen is applied to the vertical input terminal where it is fed into the vertical amplifier. The beam is deflected upward and to the right by signals applied to the upper vertical deflection plate or to the right horizontal deflection plate. generalpurpose oscilloscopes. The input signal to the horizontal amplifier depends on the position to which S2 is set. The horizontal amplifier serves to amplify the signal at its input prior to the signal being applied to the horizontal deflection plates. called ramp voltage or a saw tooth waveform. In normal operation of the oscilloscope.
controls the electron flows from the cathode and thus controls the number of electron directed to the screen. 3 . Once the electron passed the control grid. which has a negative potential. A cathode containing an oxide coating is heated indirectly by a filament resulting in the release of electrons from the cathode surface.1. Horizontal and vertical deflecting plates to control the path of the electron beam. A CRT contains four basic parts: 1. 3. An evacuated glass envelope with a phosphorescent screen which glows visibly when struck by electron beam. 2. Basic Operation of CRT Figure 2: Basic construction of CRT Figure 2 shows the basic construction of CRT. they are focused into a tight beam and accelerated to a higher velocity by focusing and accelerating anodes. Focusing and accelerating elements to produce a well define beam of electrons. An electron gun to provide a stream of electrons. The high velocity and well-defined electron beam then passed through two sets of deflection plates.3. The CRT is the heart of the CRO providing visual display of an input signal waveform. The control grid. 4.2 Cathode Ray Tube (CRT) A cathode ray tube (CRT) much like a television tube provides the visual display showing the form of signal applied as a waveform on the front screen.
Control Grid Focusing anode Electron gun Deflecting plates Regulates the number of electrons that reach the anode and hence the brightness of the spot on the screen. where they produce a bright spot. and an electric field between the second pair deflects them vertically. 4 . the electrons travel in a straight line from the hole in the accelerating anode to the center of the screen. The angle of the vertical deflection is determined by the voltage polarity applied to the deflection plates. The electron beam is also being deflected horizontally a voltage applied to the horizontal deflection plates. The phosphor glows when struck by the energetic electrons – the visible glow will be seen continue to emit light for a period of time after the source of excitation is removed.The first set of plates is oriented to deflect the electron beam vertically. ensures that electrons leaving the cathode in slightly different directions are focused down to a narrow beam and all arrive at the same spot on the screen cathode. The deflected beam is then further accelerated by very high voltages applied to the tube with the beam finally striking a phosphorescent material on the inside face of the tube. control grid. and accelerating anode An electric field between the first pair of plates deflects the electrons horizontally. Click on any control to discover its function. Click on the small diagram of each control to return to the image map. Some controls are more useful than others and one or two are rarely if ever used in an introductory electronics course. If no deflecting fields are present. oscilloscope controls The diagram below is a clickable image map of the Hameg HM 203-6 oscilloscope. focusing anode. The tube sensitivity to deflecting voltages can be expressed in two ways that are deflection factor and deflection sensitivity.
The X-Y control is used when you want to display component characteristic curves. the vertical axis is controlled by the input signal to CH II. . Instead. (Links to these topics will be added later. The green LED illuminates. . with voltage V on the vertical axis and time t on the horizontal axis. screen: usually displays a V/t graph. X-Y control: normally in the OUT position.) 5 . The scales of both axes can be changed to display a huge variety of signals. the oscilloscope does not display a V/t graph. This allows the oscilloscope to be used to display a V/V voltage/voltage graph. on/off switch: pushed in to switch the oscilloscope on. or Lissajous figures.When the X-Y button is pressed IN.Figure 3: Basic construction of CRO .
However. This makes it possible for you to look in detail at any particular part of the waveform. LF gives triggering for low frequency components and indicates that triggering will occur at 50 Hz. This works for most signals. trigger controls: This group of controls allows the oscilloscope display to be synchronised with the signal you want to investigate. triggering occurs from a signal connected to the trigger input. The slide switch to the left of TIME/DIV gives additional triggering options. if you now adjust the LEVEL control. 6 . As you adjust the LEVEL control. This control allows the display to be synchronised with the televsion system so that the signals from different points can be compared. When it is pushed IN. In the DC position. If you change the AT/NORM button to its IN position. TRIG INP. You are not likely to need any of these slide switch positions. The +/. and triggering on the downward slope in the IN position. TV-separation: Oscilloscopes are often used to investigate waveforms inside television systems. . The green TRIG LED illuminates when a trigger point is detected. . corresponding to UK mains frequency. you use the LEVEL control to select a particular DC voltage on the signal waveform where triggering will occur. When the AT/NORM button is in the OUT position. TIME / DIV: Allows the horizontal scale of the V/t graph to be changed. the display starts from a different point on the signal waveform.. triggering is automatic. the display will be reinstated. HF gives triggering in response to high frequency parts of the signal. socket. The EXT button should normally be in its OUT position. AC is the normal postion and is suitable for most waveforms.button gives triggering on the upward slope of the signal waveform in the OUT position. the most likely result is that the signal will disappear and the oscilloscope screen will be blank.
with the component tester voltage connected internally to provide the horizontal axis. 7 . intensity and focus: Adjusting the INTENSITY control changes the brightness of the oscilloscope display. component tester: The output socket provides a changing voltage which allows component characteristic curves to be displayed on the oscilloscope screen. . the oscilloscope displays a V/V graph. For example. . CAL outputs: The top terminal gives a 0. Normally. as illustrated. for example. the horizontal scale of the V/t graph is increased by 10 times.This is useful when you want to use the grid in front of the screen to make measurements. . the scale is changed to 0. you will want to leave the HOLD OFF control in its minimum position. TR can be adjusted using a small screwdriver so that the oscilloscope trace is exactly horizontal when no signal is connected. you will develop a clear understanding of the functions of the important trigger controls and be able to use them effectively. both at 50 Hz. while the lower terminal gives a 2 V peak to peak square wave. .If required.1 ms per division.2 V peak to peak square wave. if TIME/DIV is set for 1 ms per division and X-MAG is pushed IN. .The signals from these outputs are used to confirm that the oscilloscope is correctly calibrated. To get normal V/t graph operation the component tester button must be in the OUT position. The FOCUS should be set to produce a bright clear trace. With more experience of using the oscilloscope. X-POS: Allows the whole V/t graph to be moved from side to side on the oscilloscope screen.The HOLD OFF control allows you to introduce a delay relative to the trigger point so that a different part of the signal can be seen. to measure the period of a waveform. When the button is IN. X-MAG: In the IN position.
GROUND or EARTH connection. Y-POS I and Y-POS II: These controls allow the corresponding trace to be moved up or down. the input of the Y-amplfier is connected to 0 V. .. CH I and CH II inputs: Signals are connected to the BNC input sockets using BNC plugs. In the AC position. .To investigate an alternating signal. changing the position representing 0 V on the oscilloscope screen.This feature is sometimes useful when comparing signals. CH I or CH II. invert: When the INVERT button is pressed IN. 8 . or inverted. In the GND position. . the corresponding signal is turned upside down. you adjust Y-POS so that the 0 V level is close to the centre of the screen. . it is more useful to have 0 V close to the bottom of the screen. For a pulse waveform. the signal input is connected directly to the Y-amplifier of the corresponding channel. DC/AC/GND slide switches: In the DC position. Y-POS I and Y-POS II allow the 0 V levels of the two traces to be adjusted independently. VOLTS / DIV: Adjust the vertical scale of the V/t graph.The smaller socket next to the BNC input socket provides an additional 0 V. a capacitor is connected into the signal pathway so that DC voltages are blocked and only changing AC signals are displayed. The DC position of these switches is correct for most signals. . on the oscilloscope screen. trace selection switches: The settings of these switches control which traces appear on the oscilloscope screen. This allows you to check the position of 0 V on the oscilloscope screen. The vertical scales for CH I and CH II can be adjusted independently.
The effects of different settings are summarised in the table: CH I/II OUT IN OUT IN OUT IN OUT IN DUAL OUT OUT IN IN OUT OUT IN IN ADD OUT OUT OUT OUT IN IN IN IN effect of setting only CH I displayed. triggering from CH I CH I and CH II displayed on alternate sweeps. triggering from CH I only CH II displayed. triggering from CH I CH I and CH II displayed simultaneously. Such diagram are called Lissajous pattern. 9 . all three buttons are in the OUT position. Experience with the oscilloscope will help you to decide which setting is best for a particular application. triggering from CH II CH I and CH II displayed simultaneously. it forms a vector pattern that allows us to discern the relationship between the two signals.1. triggering from CH II CH I and CH II signals added together to produce a single trace. triggering from CH II CH I and CH II displayed on alternate sweeps. For normal operation. triggering from CH II Settings highlighted in yellow are used frequently. 3.2 Lissajou Patterns (a) Frequency measurement If we apply input signal to both horizontal and vertical deflection plates of x-y oscilloscope and time base generator is disconnected. triggering from CH I CH I and CH II signals added together to produce a single trace.
FY number of times tangent t ouch top or bottom = Fx number of times tangent t ouch other side number of horizontal tangencie s number of vertical tangencie s number of positive peaks or = number of right hand side peaks = where FY = frequency of signal applied to Y-plates (vertical) FX = frequency of signal applied to X-plates (horizontal) Horizontal tangencies tangent tangent Vertical tangent 2:1 3:1 1:3 Figure 7 Lissajou patterns with different frequency ratios Figure 8: Lissajou Pattern 10 .
11 .we have studied the cathode ray oscilloscope & its functions .Figure 8: Lissajous patterns for selected phase angle Y1 Y2 X1 X2 Figure 8: Determination of angle of phase shift The phase angle: sin θ = Y1 X 1 = Y2 X 2 where: θ y1 y2 = phase angle in degrees = Y-axis intercept = maximum vertical deflection Result :.
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