COT Electronics Lab

The electronics lab is the hub where COT sensors and systems are developed, debugged, and tested. Printed circuit boards designed in COT are populated with components in the lab and tested. Technicians construct the equipment from schematics developed by the COT engineers. While the bare PC boards are built in outside shops, components are soldered in place by technicians. Watertight housings, developed and built in house, are assembled and wired in the lab. Connectors, subassemblies, and PC boards are mounted and wired according to wiring diagrams. Board functionality is verified in the lab using oscilloscopes, multimeters, function generators and other test equipment.

Embedded microcontrollers are an important part of COT sensors and systems, and most of the programming of these devices is done in the lab. This process requires considerable testing and debugging using the lab instrumentation. The lab has several controller software development platforms for designing and testing software. Oscilloscopes and computers running emulation software are keys to the development process. Electronic loads are utilized to ensure that systems can supply the required power demands. Long duration tests are typically run to verify software integrity and electronics capability.

The lab is stocked with general purposes wiring, miscellaneous connectors, active and passive electronic components, various mounting hardware, and some portable test equipment for field debugging. Microscopes are available for checking PC boards and for fault analysis. Potted cables are designed, wired, and tested within the lab.