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Message ID: 10008     Entry time: Mon Jun 9 09:51:11 2014
Author: Sai Akhil 
Type: Update 
Category: Electronics 
Subject: Frequency Error Measurement of UFC-6000 RF Frequency Counter 

 Motivation: 

 
To test the precision of Mini-Circuits Model UFC-6000 RF Frequency Counter which will be used for recording the beat note for the Frequency Offset Locking Loop(FOLL).
 
 
Setup:
 
Mini Circuits RF Frequency Counter Model UFC-6000 has three I/O ports:
1)REF IN,2)USB INTERFACE,3)RF IN.
The USB INTERFACE is connected to the PC(Windows/Linux) through a USB cable.
The test RF input from an SRS Function Generator(Model DS 345 with tested precision up to 1mHz)is fed in through RF IN using an SMA cable with an SMA-BNC adaptor to connect to the Function Generator.
The REF IN is open since we want to test the counter.
 
 
What I did:
 
1. First interfaced the counter with the PC with windows OS.
 
2. Installed the user friendly GUI on my Laptop so as to record the data from the counter into a .txt file.
 
3. Gave an RF input through the function generator and recorded the response of the counter for different frequencies ranging from 1MHz to 30MHz.
 
4.Analyzed the collected data by plotting the histograms(attached) in Matlab(script attached in .zip file)
 

What was Expected:
 
The measurement statistics of the instrument would give knowledge about the error and tolerance in the measurement which will be helpful to negotiate the error when the counter is being used in the setup. 
 
 
Results:
 
The obtained plots(for sampling time of 1s) are attached in a figure.
The measurement error of the frequency counter for 1s sampling time is:
 
data file     Frequency       Mean in MHz            Standard Error(+/-)in Hz    
 1MH.txt            1MHz            0.999999846             0.0109
 5MHz.txt          5MHz            5.000000293             0.0134
 10MHz.txt       10MHz         10.00000148              0.0108
 15MHz.txt       15MHz         15.0000018                0.0072
 20MHz.txt       20MHz         20.00000053              0.0259
 30MHz.txt       30MHz         30.00000146              0.0230
 
The measurement error of the UFC-6000 RF Frequency Counter is in the order of 0.01-0.02 Hz. This error varies at different frequencies as inferred from the table.
The error for different sampling times of the FC are also plotted.
 
Plan:
 
To complete interfacing the counter with the Raspberry-pi.
Make this Frequency Counter talk to EPICS through slow channels.
 
 
 
 
 
 
Attachment 1: Data_and_Script_Files.zip  2 kB  Uploaded Mon Jun 9 14:23:40 2014
Attachment 2: Error_Measurement_FC.pdf  53 kB  Uploaded Mon Jun 9 14:23:54 2014  | Show | Show all
Attachment 3: Error_freq.jpg  72 kB  Uploaded Mon Jun 16 11:30:31 2014  | Show | Show all
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