From Digital and Analogue Instrumentation: Testing and Measurement
Nihal Kularatna, Shantilal Atukorala

11.1 Introduction

This chapter provides an introduction to common instrument interfaces and VLSI testing. Technical details of two matured standards such as the IEEE-488 interface system and the VME bus extension for instrumentation (VXIbus) are given, along with an insight into the evolution of the standards and the future trends.

The IEEE-488 interface system, more commonly known as the general purpose interface bus (GPIB), has been carefully designed to integrate several instruments, together with a computer or a dedicated instrument controller, to simplify the automated measurement process. The bus allows a two-way communication between the controller or the computer with the instruments on the test setup and assists the test engineer in the design and implementation of automatic test equipment (ATE). The particular design philosophy and the interface system allow the necessary flexibility to accommodate different types of electronic instruments manufactured by different manufacturers. The IEEE-488 interface is a digital system, which allows up to 15 instruments or devices to communicate with each other under the control of a master unit or a controller. The devices and instruments are connected together in parallel using specially designed connectors and a cable system referred to as a bus . The supervision of the integrated test setup is provided by the master unit called the controller which is usually a personal computer or a dedicated bus controller. The software needed to control the test setup can be easily written using the popular computer languages. In the past, languages like BASIC...

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Products & Services
VME, VPX, and VXI Products
VME, VPX and VXI products are designed for use with a VME, VPX or VXI bus. They include controllers and processors, extenders, switches, bus interfaces and adapters, power interface boards (PBs), and load boards.
Bus Extenders
Bus extenders are used to increase cable lengths for distance-limited bus protocols.
IC Bus Interfaces and Controllers
IC bus interfaces and bus controllers or bus masters are interfaces between most standard parallel-bus microcontrollers or microprocessors and the serial bus.
VME, VPX, and VXI Bus Interfaces and Adapters
VME, VPX and VXI bus interfaces and adapters allow VME, VPX, and VPI buses to communicate with other types of computer systems and devices.
GPIB Controllers and GPIB Interface Boards
GPIB controllers and GPIB interface boards are devices that enable communications between GPIB buses and GPIB networks.

Topics of Interest

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REFERENCES [8.1] Coates, T. Interfacing to the Interface: Practical Considerations Beyond the Scope of IEEE Standard 488, presented at WESCON Conference, Session 3, September, 1975. [8.2] Fluke,...

William M. Hayes INTRODUCTION Modular instruments employ a frame (Fig. 25.6.1) that serves as a host. These frames allow multiple switch, measurement, and source cards to share a common backplane.

Prior to 1987 there existed only one major architecture standard for instruments...the General Purpose Interface Bus (GPIB). Although the GPIB was widely used, it did not address the need for portable...