Power Electronics / Power Management

Programmable power supplies and electronic loads

26 April 2022 Power Electronics / Power Management

EA Elektro-Automatik is now offering the 10000-Series enhanced and expanded line of EA-PS and EA-PSI programmable DC power supplies, EA-PSB bidirectional DC power supplies and EA-ELR regenerative DC electronic loads.

The 10000 Series includes over 180 new models delivering an expanded power range from 0-600 W to 0-30 kW. The models provide extended output voltages from 0-10 V to 0-2000 V (a significant increase over prior 9000-Series power instruments) and output current as high as 1000 A. All variants are available in 4U, 3U and 2U form factors.

All 10000-Series instruments operate on the same firmware and have the same touchscreen user interface. The physical layout is also the same and all models have similar input and output characteristics. This common programming and user interface saves test development and setup time when building test systems that have multiple power instrumentation requirements.

An auto-ranging output characteristic (or input in the case of electronic loads) is employed by every model in the range, giving them a higher-voltage capability at lower currents and a higher-current capability at lower voltages than a power supply or load with a conventional rectangular output/input characteristic. Furthermore, an instrument with auto-ranging output/input can deliver/accept full power output over a significant portion of the instrument’s operating range. This is in contrast with an instrument with a rectangular output characteristic which has maximum power only at its maximum voltage and current. The benefit of EA’s auto-ranging capability for a test engineer is access to a wider range of voltages and currents, enabling them to test more applications without the need for multiple power supplies.

The EA-PSI supplies, EA-PSB supplies and EA-ELR loads all have a built-in function generator to allow the creation of complex signals riding on a DC bias and to simulate the characteristics of various devices such as solar cells, batteries and fuel cells. Special functions include maximum power point tracking (MPPT) and EN 50530 compliance for solar panel inverter testing and LV123-, LV124- and LV148 standards-based test sequences for the testing of automotive components and systems. These built-in functions simplify the tasks of programming the instruments to simulate various devices and creating sequences of outputs (or inputs) to comply with key test standards.

All models in the 10000 Series employ active power factor correction, with a typical power factor of 0,99, to minimise the power drawn from the power grid. Additionally, EA-PSB bidirectional power supplies and EA-ELR electronic loads employ regenerative circuitry to return energy back to the grid with up to 96% efficiency or more. Regenerative circuitry saves operating costs and the expense of cooling solutions to dissipate the heat that a conventional electronic load generates.

The instruments work effectively in either PC-controlled test systems or PLC-controlled industrial processes and engineers can easily program them using SCPI or Modbus programming modes. Their extensive set of interfaces comprises PC interfaces for Ethernet, USB and RS-232, while PLC interfaces include CAN bus, Profibus, Modbus, Profinet and EtherCAT, among several other options.

Test engineers can parallel up to 64 of the power supplies and loads using the master-auxiliary bus to enable one instrument to control all others in the system. The system can consist of any combination of instrument power levels within the same EA-XXX family (EA-PSB, EA-PSI or EA-ELR). A galvanically isolated shared-bus interface in each unit ensures that all the instruments safely share the load requirements so that the entire rack can operate at full performance.


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