AUSTIN, Texas National Instruments has made several product announcements at NIWeek, including a wireless platform and a novel collaboration with Tektronix.
NI has come up with its own wireless sensor network (WSN) platform that uses its Labview software to integrate with battery-powered, measurement nodes for deployement in rugged conditions.
The NI WSN platform enables a drag-and-drop programming environment for configuring wireless systems, extracting measurements, performing analysis and presenting data. Labview also offers native Web connectivity for remote interaction with wireless systems.
"The Center for Embedded Network Systems at UCLA is actively deploying NI WSN sensors in a parking garage at the Ronald Reagan Medical Center to help patients and family quickly identify open parking locations and to research options for proactive communication to commuters on parking availability across campus," said William Kaiser, director of the Actuated, Sensing, Coordinated and Embedded Networked Technologies lab at UCLA.
National Instruments releasing its first two WSN nodes and plans to expand the measurement capabilities of the NI WSN platform.
The wireless measurement nodes are powered by four AA batteries for up to three years. The NI WSN-3202 four-channel, 10 V analog input node and NI WSN-3212 four-channel, 24-bit thermocouple node have four digital I/O channels that can be configured for input, sinking output or sourcing output.
The wireless devices include NI-WSN software, which connects the NI wireless devices to LabVIEW software running on Microsoft Windows or a LabVIEW Real-Time host controller. NI-WSN software is based on IEEE 802.15.4 technology and gathers measurement data from the distributed measurement nodes.
National Instruments also introduced SoftMotion Module for the development of single- and multi-axis motion applications.
Labview NI SoftMotion enables programming motion profiles with a high-level, function block API based on the Motion Control Library defined by PLCopen. It includes function blocks for straight line, arc and contoured move types as well as function blocks for advanced operations such as electronic gearing and camming.
Separately NI introduced 16 new X Series Data Acquisition Devices for PCI Express and PXI Express. X Series DAQ devices, which include up to 32 analog inputs (AI), four analog outputs (AO), 48 digital I/O lines and four counters, range from low-cost 250 kS/s multiplexed AI to 2 MS/s simultaneous sampling AI.
National Instruments also announced NI VeriStand 2009, an open, configuration-based software environment for creating real-time testing applications such as hardware-in-the-loop (HIL) and controlled environmental tests.
NI VeriStand assists engineers in developing real-time test systems faster by giving them the ability to quickly capture the essential hardware I/O, simulation model and other real-time task settings using an interactive system explorer window.
The company offers a webcast on real-time testing and demonstration videos on NI VeriStand.
National Instruments is also making available PXI Express chassis and controller options for automated test and measurement applications, According to NI the PXIe-1073 chassis lowers the system entry point to PXI Express by 42 percent compared to previous PXI Express systems with similar capabilities.
At NIWeek, National Instruments revealed a two-year collaborative joint development with Tektronix of a 3-GHz digitizer in a PXI Express module.
The two companies are also making available the NI-TekLink adapter to enable hybrid systems consisting of a Tektronix instrument and a PXI system.