Automated test bench for an Industrial DAQ Device

Testing has become an inevitable part of product development as it helps in ensuring the conformance and quality of any embedded device. Major OEM’s make use of manual testing, which requires manpower & consumes a lot of time, money, and resources. It also leads to a high risk of error and demands manual creation of logs and reports. These constraints can be resolved only by executing an automated testing methodology.

Embien, being the pioneer of product engineering services, offers an automated testbench solution and provides insights on how to leverage the benefits of automated testing during the development process.

Automated Testing with calibration and reporting

A major industrial OEM came up with a need to design and develop an automated test bench for testing their newly developed Industrial Data Acquisition device. The device was already field-tested and ready to deploy in the market. The main requirement was to validate the device from the production line with a final firmware and provide the test report to their cloud database with a unique serial number for tracking. Apart from testing, there was a requirement to calibrate the inbuilt sensor input circuitry of the device & upload the report to the database. All these processes had to be executed within a short time such that the complete testing cycle does not more than two to three minutes.

Industrial DAQ

Industrial DAQ

Automated Test Bench deployment using TestBot

Embien understood the requirement better and offered a complete solution that supported the automation of testing, calibration, and reporting process. Most of the industrial data acquisition devices include multiple digital/analog inputs that support the integration of various sensors to acquire physical parameters such as temperature, pressure, humidity, metal detection, liquid flow, etc. In addition to data acquisition, some devices also support the controlling of external loads via relays, based on the sensor data readings and preset conditions.

The DUT was such a data acquisition device that acquired data from sensors and read the flow values from the flow meter via the RS485 interface. The acquired data was uploaded to the AWS cloud via various connectivities such as Ethernet or WiFi and was made viewable in the local PC, with the help of a windows application shared via a USB interface.

Testing such a device required a customized test jig with a combination of embedded hardware, firmware, and an automation tool. Device functionality - starting from data acquisition to cloud upload, was validated by executing multiple test cases. Apart from this, some test cases like LED indications and switch actuation demanded manual interventions that were more time-consuming in manual testing & complex in automation.

Embien’s ready-to-deploy automated test bench “TestBot” was well suited for this requirement, as it tested the complete functionality of the device with very few manual interventions. Multiple test cases and inputs/outputs to/from the DUT were captured, correlated, and validated with the help of generic hardware and cross-platform tool. The tool had separate test scripts developed and pre-loaded for each test case. It also had configurations & test definitions incorporated, which made automation testing for the complete batch of DUT easy with just a single click.

TestBot supported cloud level verification by fetching data from the cloud via Ethernet and WiFi. Manual operations such as testing LED indications and switch actuation were automated, using suitable sensors and mechanical inputs.

Device Firmware Programming and Auto-calibration using TestBot

The test firmware validated peripherals like the Switch, LEDs, etc., and the final firmware validated the complete test cases. TestBot had options for programming devices via SWD, JTAG, LPD, and UART interfaces, without having the need for any additional setup. We programmed the DUT via the SWD interface, along with suitable debugger and cable assemblies.

Based on standard reference, we customized the TestBot and initiated the calibration of wireless devices to acquire the standard reference value of device sensor input calibration.

To offer the right automated test solution for your end product, get in touch with us today!