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VB-8012 Calibration Procedure

Calibration Executive 4.0 Help

Edition Date: March 2017

Part Number: 374564H-01

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This topic contains information for calibrating the National Instruments VB-8012 using Calibration Executive.

Calibration Executive Procedure Features:


Adjustment Only

Manual Mode

Selectable Test Points


Approximate Test Time:

30 minutes
Verify Only
45 minutes
Adjust Only
40 minutes
Verify & Adjust
120 minutes
Test Equipment| Test Conditions| Device Setup|
Note Note  The VirtualBench procedure supports verifying and adjusting each device function. To minimize connection and test time during verification and adjustment of the device, the Verify, Adjust, and Re-verify operations are grouped by device function. If you need to verify the performance of the entire device prior to adjusting, NI recommends that you perform Verify Only first, and then perform an Adjust operation after completing a full verification.

Test Equipment

The following tables list the test equipment required to calibrate the VB-8012.

Instrument Recommended Model Instrument Calibration Requirements
Multifunction calibrator Fluke 5700A/5720A/5730A DMM Must be calibrated within the last year.
High current source Fluke 5725A DMM Able to generate a current of 5 Amps at 40 Hz and ±2.2 Amps DC.
Shielded interface cable for the high current source Fluke 842901 DMM
Low thermal electromotive force (EMF) copper cable (2) Fluke 5440A-7002 DMM Low thermal electromotive force (EMF) copper cables with 4 mm banana connectors.
Insulated low thermal electromotive force (EMF) spade lug (2) Pomona 2305 DMM
Double banana plug with binding posts Pomona 5405 DMM
Oscilloscope calibrator Fluke 9500B Oscilloscope Vertical gain: DC ±(0.025% + 25 µV) into 1 MΩ

Must be able to generate a 1 kHz square wave between 90 mVpp and 18 Vpp with less than 50 ns rise time and less than 5% overshoot.

Oscilloscope calibrator active head Fluke 9530 Oscilloscope
50 Ω terminator Amphenol 000-46650-51RFX Oscilloscope
Digital multimeter (DMM) PXI-4071 Function Generator,
DC power supply
DCV accuracy: 35 ppm
DC input impedance: ≥1 GΩ
DCA accuracy: 290 ppm
Banana plug-to-BNC cable Pomona 4530-C Function Generator
Twisted pair, shielded cabling wire DC power supply 18 AWG to 22 AWG

Test Conditions

The following setup and environmental conditions are required to ensure the VB-8012 meets published specifications.

  • Keep connections to the device as short as possible. Long cables and wires act as antennas, picking up noise that can affect measurements.
  • Use a USB connection between the PC and VirtualBench.
  • Verify that all connections to the device, including front panel connections, are secure.
  • Keep relative humidity between 10% and 80% noncondensing.
  • Allow a warm up time of at least 30 minutes to ensure that the VirtualBench is at a stable operating temperature.
  • Plug the VirtualBench, PC, and the test equipment into the same power strip to avoid ground loops.
  • (DMM Calibration) Maintain an ambient temperature of 23 ±1 °C. The device temperature will be greater than the ambient temperature.
  • (DMM Calibration) Clean any oxidation from the banana plugs on the Fluke 5440 cables before plugging them into the binding posts of the calibrator or the banana plug connectors on the VirtualBench. Oxidation tarnishes the copper banana plugs so that they appear dull rather than shiny and leads to greater thermal EMF.
  • (DMM Calibration) Keep the blue banana plugs on the Fluke 5440 cables connected to the V GUARD binding post of the calibrator at all times.
  • (DMM Calibration) Prevent the cables from moving or vibrating by taping or strapping them to a nonvibrating surface. Movement or vibration causes triboelectric effects that can result in measurement errors.
  • (DC Power Supply Calibration) Use shielded copper wire for all cable connections to the device. Use twisted-pair wire to eliminate noise and thermal offsets.
  • (Oscilloscope, FGEN, and DC Power Supply Calibration) Maintain an ambient temperature of 23 ±5 °C. The device temperature will be greater than the ambient temperature.

Device Setup

  1. If VirtualBench is running, shut down all instruments on the VirtualBench, and close the VirtualBench software. Remove all signal connections.
  2. Verify that the test equipment has been calibrated within specified time limits and that a self-calibration has been performed before VirtualBench calibration.
  3. Ensure that the VirtualBench is warmed up for at least 30 minutes and that test equipment is warmed up for the minimum time required as specified in its user documentation
  4. If you are calibrating the VirtualBench DMM, it should be calibrated before the DC power supply.
  5. Before adjusting the DC power supply, you must enable and set the output voltages at full scale for a minimum of 15 minutes.


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