136 Electrical Instrumentation Calibration Procedures

For Whom Intended  This course is intended for personnel involved in metrology, instrumentation and various testing activities. It is recommended for TTi’s Instrumentation Test Specialist (ITS) Diploma Program and is designed to provide a basic understanding of the methodology of calibration of electrical measuring and test equipment.

Electrical instrumentationBrief Course Description  The course commences with a brief review of some basic terminology, systems of units, measurement standards, traceability and types of error. The course then covers calibration standards and documents affecting the calibration of electrical items. A brief review is made of measurement uncertainty.

The course then covers calibration equipment and techniques in detail, starting with a discussion of electrical instrument calibration with precision instruments such as VOM devices, oscillators, counters, function generators, power supplies, RF power instrumentation, temperature simulation and measuring equipment, and fiber optic instruments.

Electrical working standards are discussed, such as meter calibrators, oscilloscope calibrators, multi-function calibrators, distortion analyzers, counters, LF Spectrum Analyzers, RCL Meters and substitution boxes, and more.

Attention will focus more on generic processes and theory of individual measurements than on how to calibrate a specific instrument. We will explore the background and theory of precision measurements in voltage, current, resistance, capacitance, inductance, frequency, and LF/RF power. Further discussion of measurement and theory in noise, total harmonic distortion, phase angle, modulation, and rise time will be pursued in detail.

The instructor presents the course aided by overhead Power Point slides. Students are expected to participate in classroom discussion and exercises.

Diploma Programs  This course is recommended for TTi’s Instrumentation Test Specialist Diploma Program. It may be used as an optional course for any other TTi specialist diploma program.

Prerequisites  There are no definite prerequisites for this course, but TTi’s courses Electronics for Non-Electronic Engineers, Metrology Concepts and Instrumentation for Electrical Test and Measurement would be helpful. Supervisors are invited to telephone or e-mail TTi on prospective attendees’ backgrounds and needs.

Text  Each student will receive 180 days access to the on-line electronic course workbook. Renewals and printed textbooks are available for an additional fee.

Course Hours, Certificate and CEUs  Class hours/days for on-site courses can vary from 14-35 hours over 2-5 days as requested by our clients. Upon successful course completion, each participant receives a certificate of completion and one Continuing Education Unit (CEU) for every ten class hours.

Click for a printable course outline (pdf).


Course Outline No. 136

  • Introduction and Focus
    • Metrology Terminology
    • Scope of Metrology
    • Measurement Processes
    • Units
    • Measurement error
    • Classification of Error
    • Error vs. Accuracy
  • Measurement Standards and Traceability
    • Measurement Standards
    • Traceability
    • Definition of the Second
    • Coordinated Universal Time (UTC)
    • Definition of the Ampere
    • Voltage Reference
    • Josephson Junction
    • Standard Resistor
  • Technical Requirements in Calibration Standards
    • US Government Agencies
    • Calibration Program-Operations
    • Historical requirements
      • MIL-STD 45662A
      • ANSI Z540-1-1994
    • Compliance Documents
    • NIST
    • Calibration Procedure Template
    • Handling, Records, Certificates & Reports
    • Accreditation
    • Technical and Calibration requirements in ISO 9000
  • Types of Standards
    • Oscilloscope Calibrators
    • Multifunction Calibrators
    • Distortion Analyzers
    • Counters
    • LF Spectrum Analyzers & FFTs
    • RCL Devices
  • Measurement Uncertainty
    • Purpose of a Measurement
    • Accuracy Concept
    • Error types
      • Random
      • Instrumentation
      • Environmental
      • Observational
    • Reduction of Observer Bias (exercise)
    • Estimating Measurement Uncertainty of a Calibration Process
  • Example: Estimating Electrical Uncertainty
    • Calibration of a Hand-Held Digital Multi-meter at 100 V dc
    • Resolution
    • Uncertainty Budget
    • Expanded Uncertainty
  • Electrical Calibration
    • VOM Devices
      • Digital Multi-Meters
      • DMM Data Sheet
      • Tolerances
      • Terminology
      • Two Wire and Four Wire Ohms
      • Processes
    • Synthesizers/Sweepers
      • Dbm and Dbu Power
      • Synthesized Sweep Oscillator Specifications
      • Level Specs
      • Output Level Flatness
      • Frequency Specifications
      • Harmonics
      • Phase Noise Display
      • Modulation
      • Measuring Power
      • Mismatch Calculation and Conversions
      • Frequency Meter
      • Harmonic Test with Spectrum Analyzer
      • Phase Noise Test
    • Counters
      • Frequency Standards
      • Counters-Functions
    • Function and Pulse Generators
      • Pulse Characteristics
    • Power Supplies
      • Grounding of Power Supply
    • Temperature/ Humidity Simulation & Measurement
      • Thermocouple
      • SPRT
      • RTD
      • Data Logging Types
      • Humidity Calibration
        • Chilled Mirror Concept
    • Spectrum and Network Analyzers
      • The Frequency Domain
      • Calibration and Validation Kits
    • Impedance Bridges
    • Amplifiers
    • Logic Analyzers
    • Angle Position Indicators
    • RF Power Measurement
      • RF Power Meter Use
      • RF Power Meter and Sensor Calibration
    • Fiber Optic Calibration
      • Overview
      • Optical Specifications
      • Optical Devices
        • Optical Power Meter
        • Optical Sources
        • Optical Spectrum Analyzers
        • Wave Meters
      • OTDR and Back Reflection
      • Optical Attenuator
  • Calibration of Vibration Measuring Instruments
    • Transducers
    • Strain Gages
    • Accelerometers
    • Comparison Method
  • Oscilloscopes
    • Analog
    • Digital
    • High Bandwidth
    • Specifications
    • Calibration Procedures
  • Overview of ISO 17025
    • Material Review Boards
    • Corrective Action
    • Preventive Action
  • Class Project
  • Summary, Final Review
  • Award of certificates for successful completion

Course Outline


Click for a printable course outline (pdf).