- 6th January 2013, 14:05 #1

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## Op-amp AC characteristics measurement

Dear Friends

I finished the simulation of my op-amp design. Now I would like to know the real measurement setup for every test. Starting here in thispost with simulating the AC characteristics (Open loop gain, f-3dB, Phase Margin) .

As you know that dealing with an open loop amp is really difficult, therefore an approach like the one I attached is used for this purpose. The problem I dont understand how it working and by which equiepemnt we can scan the frequency and how we can read it to be like the one we simulate.

Please i really need your kind help

Regards

- 6th January 2013, 14:05

- 6th January 2013, 15:39 #2

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## Re: Op-amp AC characteristics measurement

Hi Junus,

the shown test setup has unity gain for dc only - that is necessary to ensure an operating point within the opamp´s linear range. Otherwise, the offset voltage would bring the output into saturation because of the large open-loop dc gain.

The capacitor C should be as large as possible because - together with the large R - it creates a large time constant equivalent to a very low corner frequency wc.

Thus, for frequencies above wc the inverting input (increasingly) is ac grounded and you can measure/simulate the open-loop gain by connecting a swept frequency signal at Vin.

The load componenets (RL and CL) are not too important. Thus, some kind of normal operation conditions are established..

Remark: The rising linear curve starting at 1/RC is the inverse feedback factor 1/Hf with Hf=1/(1+sRC). Thus, the bold line is identical to the gain of the whole circuit (with feedback).

The crossing of both functions gives you the frequency w1=Av(0)/RC above which the measurement is identical to the desired open-loop gain of the opamp alone. This curve clearly shows why you should select a large time constant RC.Last edited by LvW; 6th January 2013 at 15:55.

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- 6th January 2013, 18:25 #3

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## Re: Op-amp AC characteristics measurement

by which equiepemnt we can scan the frequency and how we can read it to be like the one we simulate

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- 6th January 2013, 18:29 #4

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## Re: Op-amp AC characteristics measurement

Thank you very much LVW

your explanation is very sufficient , I think you are a teacher in this subject really

I hope to see your replies with the next measurements I would post

Thank you in advance Sir

Regards

- - - Updated - - -

Kindly, If it is possible for you to suggest me the equipment,

Any way how could I measure the phase Margin ??

- 6th January 2013, 20:30 #5

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## Re: Op-amp AC characteristics measurement

- 6th January 2013, 20:30

- 6th January 2013, 23:52 #6

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- 7th January 2013, 06:56 #7

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## Re: Op-amp AC characteristics measurement

You don't primarly measure phase margin, you determine the phase of the open loop transfer function which allows to calculate phase margin for specific feedback factors.

The phase can be measured with an oscilloscope if you don't have special instruments for this purpose (e.g. a vector network analyzer). The input signal or a respective reference signal from the signal generator have to be connected to the oscilloscope too. Modern DSOs have suitable measurement functions to determine phase differences accurately.

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- 7th January 2013, 07:06 #8

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## Re: Op-amp AC characteristics measurement

As an alternative, you can measure the step response of the closed-loop using the oscilloscope. The overshoot you can observe is a good indication of the phase margin.

There are graphics overshoot=f(phase margin), which can be used for this purpose.

This relationship normally holds for second order circuits only, but can be used with good accuracy also for third-order systems (this sufficient for opamp applications).

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- 7th January 2013, 14:15 #9

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## Re: Op-amp AC characteristics measurement

Thank you very much guys for your kind explanation, I will think more about it to ask you further

Have fun

Best Regards

- 7th January 2013, 23:57 #10

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## Re: Op-amp AC characteristics measurement

Dear FvM and LvW

I have found this paper to calculate the phase margin from the step response overshoot , but the equation he used is not clear. Kindly, do you have any clear article regarding the same methods ??

many thanks

- 8th January 2013, 11:10 #11

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## Re: Op-amp AC characteristics measurement

Junus,

I think - the equation is quite clear: PM as a function of the damping factor, which is identical to 1/2Q.

However, this requires the knowledge of Q for the closed feedback loop.

Therefore, I attach a copy from a textbook (S. Franco:*Design with opamps and analog int. circuits*).

There you can find a graph overshoot=f(PM).

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- 8th January 2013, 13:14 #12

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## Re: Op-amp AC characteristics measurement

Thank you very much LvW, so nice