Test, Inspection and Measurement Software Information
Test, inspection and measurement software is used to design, automate and implement the testing of instruments and equipment. It is also used to measure device parameters. Many types of test, inspection and measurement software are commonly available. Examples include network testing software, inspection software, compliance software, automatic testing software, calibration software, analysis software, and monitoring software. Network testing software is used to monitor network equipment such as hubs, servers, and switches. Inspection management software provides condition monitoring of oil refineries, chemical plants, and power generation facilities. Compliance software is used to record equipment status and generate forms such as NFPA-25 from the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). Calibration management software allows personnel to schedule calibration intervals, generate work orders, produce calibration certificates, and review past results. Analysis software can be used to schedule preventive maintenance. Monitoring software is used to track the performance of instruments and equipment ranging from medical devices to robots. Test, inspection and measurement software for specialized applications is also available.
Selecting Test, Inspection and Measurement Software
Selecting test, inspection and measurement software requires an analysis of system requirements, product specifications, and features. Most applications are designed to run on personal computers (PC), thin clients, or hand-held devices. PC-based products usually run on versions of the Microsoft Windows operating system (OS) and differ in terms of system requirements such as processor speed, random access memory (RAM), and available disk space. Web-based applications use browsers such as Internet Explorer and provide remote access. Microsoft, Windows, and Internet Explorer are registered trademarks of Microsoft Corporation. In terms of features, test, inspection and measurement software may provide on-the-fly debugging, automatic testing, and the runtime verification of instrument parameters. Analytical and visual functions include numeric computation, signal processing, and the creation of 2D, 3D, waterfall, bar, and pie charts.
Test, inspection and measurement software is designed to communicate with equipment and instruments via communication standards, protocols, and buses such as the general-purpose interface bus (GPIB), the universal serial bus (USB), VME extensions for instrumentation (VMI), PCI extensions for instrumentation (PXI), LAN extensions for instrumentation (LXI), and signal conditioning extensions for instrumentation (SCXI). Test, inspection and measurement software can also be used with a variety of backplanes and form factors.