PSC is upgrading our internal data acquisition (DAQ) system used for all hardware and testing. Lessons learned from years of operating, fixing, and upgrading the current system resulted in a robust and capable design that will see significant improvement across all use cases. PSC’s lead engineer on the program, Floyd Azure, answered a few questions.

1) Why is this upgrade important?
This DAQ upgrade is important because it improves on our current capability to reliably test our products. We are moving to National Instruments PXI technology which will be the foundation for future testing and production.

2) What are two major improvements over the current system?
a. The PXI technology allows each module independent communication to the host computer.  Essentially, we can acquire data and send commands in parallel. Our old technology had to be executed and monitored sequentially.
b. The data bandwidth is substantially higher and has 24-bit DAQ capability.  This allows for more precise data measurements, and allows us to sample a higher frequency bandwidth.  This is a great upgrade for mechanical shock testing and acquired telemetry from our products.

3) What is one major challenge you came across during the upgrade development and what was the solution?
The major challenge is predicting what we will need in the next 5 years. I relied on national instruments modular capability to overcome these unforeseen challenges. Hopefully if new or challenging tasks come along, a solution will be as easy as selecting a new module to handle the task.

Thanks Floyd. We look forward to reaping the benefits the new system will provide.