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How Can I Calculate the Power Being Used in My CompactRIO?

Hardware: Reconfigurable I/O (RIO)

I am running a CompactRIO (cRIO) chassis with a controller and analog/digital IO modules. How can I find out how much power is being consumed by the cRIO?


The recommended 48W power supply mentioned in the CompactRIO configuration manual is an estimate of how much power should be provided to the cRIO and therefore, also an estimate of how much power is being used.  A measure of the real power consumption should involve both the environment as well as the application for which the cRIO is being used. The best way to do this is by measuring the the inputs of the controller while the full application is running, let it run 3 or 4 hours in the typical environment it will be placed in and then take measurements for this extended period of time to get enough samples to get an empirical value.

If you need to calculate a maximum power number then add up the numbers for the controller, backplane and the modules that you are using for measurement. The actual power number is always less than this maximum power number as the individual components for the maximum power number take into account the worst part conditions, high temperature ranges and applications that make the backplane draw the greatest amount of power that it can. Let us consider an example system with the following components:
  • 9014 controller
  • 9104 backplane
  • Modules: 9205, 9263, Two 9401s, 9474, and 9237.

To calculate the maximum power for this system, we simply use the power for each component as given in the specifications. So the maximum power for this system would be:

(6 + 3 + 0.625 + 0.625 + 2*0.58 + 0.66 + 0.74) Watts or  12.81 Watts.

Keep in mind that this is the maximum power drawn by this system and to get a measure of the actual power drawn you still have to take measurements for the environment the application is in.

Related Links:
Manual: CompactRIO Reconfigurable Embedded System Installation Instructions


Report Date: 09/19/2008
Last Updated: 11/20/2016
Document ID: 4PIGBIC1

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