The Gyroscope Automated Testbed (GAT) is a fully automated inertial device characterization testbed. Rotational response parameterization and shortterm noise stability analysis are the fundamental principles behind the system. Complete response characterization, bias stability, sensitivity, and range are supported along with a drift stability and noise analysis through use of a Green chart and calculation of the power spectral density. GAT is also capable of performing turn-on cycle stability and temperature-dependent testing.

The system is fully automated yet allows complete customization of test parameters. Each of the specific tests may be enabled or disabled as desired, and each test may be individually configured. The state of the system can be saved and loaded at any time providing quick and easy access to various configurations.

The hardware interface layer of the program has been abstracted to provide a flexible yet robust method of input and control. The data-acquisition subsystem provides a universal method of acquiring data from devices. Direct analog inputs are provided and can be individually customized. General-purpose-interface-bus- (GPIB-) compliant devices may be used for either input (i.e., voltmeters) or as control or output (i.e., temperature controller). This flexible arrangement allows nearly unlimited expandability and extendibility to future capabilities. An abstract rate table interface permits control of any rate table which supports an analog or GPIB interface.

Results are presented in both summary and complete form. Processed and raw data can be saved to a file during a test. Key values and data plots are output to a table in real time during a test. At the completion of a testing session, a document is automatically generated which summarizes the results and encapsulates all output charts generated during the session.

The GAT system provides a cost-effective way of characterizing inertial devices. Although designed for analyzing microelectromechanical (MEM) vibratory gyroscopes, it can easily be adapted to accelerometers by simply changing the units of measure. It is also highly efficient as up to five devices can be tested simultaneously.

The GAT system currently is executed on a Pentium III (or equivalent), 550- MHz computer with 256MB of RAM, 10GB hard drive, internal data acquisition card, and GPIB interface card.

This program was written by Christopher Evans and Roman Gutierrez of Caltech for NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. For further information, access the Technical Support Package (TSP) free on-line at www.  under the Software category.

This software is available for commercial licensing. Please contact Don Hart of the California Institute of Technology at (818) 393-3425. Refer to NPO-20847.

This Brief includes a Technical Support Package (TSP).
Gyroscope Automated Testbed

(reference NPO-20847) is currently available for download from the TSP library.

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