How Do I Calculate Absolute Accuracy Or System Accuracy?Hardware: Multifunction DAQ (MIO)
Problem: How do I calculate the absolute accuracy of my components and the system accuracy of my entire measurement? Solution: There are three steps when calculating the system accuracy of a measurement:
First, determine how each component is connected to the system and identify all pertinent variables that will affect the calculated accuracy. For this example, we'll assume an SCXI1125 isolation module is cascaded using the SCXI1352 cable to an SCXI1141 filter module. This filter module is then connected to an NI 6052E DAQ device. SCXI 1125 » SCXI 1141 » NI 6052E Assume the following:
Next, calculate the Absolute Accuracy for each component. For any individual device with gain (either an amplifier or attenuator), for a specified nominal range, National Instruments provides an absolute accuracy specification in millivolts. Depending upon the presentation of different errors, there are three different equations to use to calculate the accuracy. All equations are listed below: Equation 1 Absolute Accuracy = ±(VoltageReading*GainError + VoltageRange*OffsetError + NoiseUncertainity)
You can obtain the parameter values in the above equation by looking at the specifications found in each component's catalog or user manual. Equation 2 Absolute Accuracy = ±((Input Voltage * % of reading) + (Range * % Offset of the Range) + System Noise + Temperature Drift)
You can obtain the parameter values in the above equation by looking at the specifications found in each component's catalog or user manual.
Equation 3 Absolute Accuracy = ±((Input Reading*Gain Error) + (Range*Offset Error) + Input Noise)
C Series Modules provide concise specifications for users to determine their accuracy throughout the entire operating temperature range (Calibrated Maximum 40 to 70). This accuracy entry accounts for temperature variations, worst case component tolerances, thermal hysteresis, etc.
Figure 1: NI 9209 Accuracy Specifications
Step 3: Calculate the system accuracy and system accuracy RTI
Finally, we will use the Absolute Accuracy from each component to calculate the System Accuracy and System Accuracy RTI. Like the Pythagorean Theorem, the System Accuracy is equal to the square root of the sum of the squares of each component's Absolute Accuracy.
System Accuracy = ( (Absolute Accuracy 1)^2 + (Absolute Accuracy 2)^2 + (Absolute Accuracy 3)^2 + ...) )^(1/2) The System Accuracy Relative To Input (RTI) is calculated as follows: System Accuracy RTI = System Accuracy / Input Voltage System Accuracy Example Calculations for the above setup: Here are the absolute accuracy calculations for each component of our system: Absolute Accuracy of the SCXI1125
Absolute Accuracy = ±((Input Voltage * % of reading) + Offset + System Noise + Temperature Drift) Absolute Accuracy = ±((10 V * 0.002478) + 0.01 V + 0.0191 V + N/A) Absolute Accuracy = ± 54.88 mV Absolute Accuracy of the SCXI1141 Absolute Accuracy = ±((Input Voltage * % of reading) + Offset + System Noise + Temperature Drift) Absolute Accuracy = ±((5 V * 0.0002) + 0.0006 V + 0.001420 V + N/A) Absolute Accuracy = ±3.02 mV Absolute Accuracy of the PCI6052E Absolute Accuracy = ±((Input Voltage * % of reading) + Offset + System Noise + Temperature Drift) Absolute Accuracy = ±((5 V * .000071) + 0.000476 V + 0.000491 V + N/A) Absolute Accuracy = ±1.322 mV System Accuracy System Accuracy = ( (Absolute Accuracy 1)^2 + (Absolute Accuracy 2)^2 + (Absolute Accuracy 3)^2 + ...) )^(1/2) System Accuracy = ( (54.88 mV)^2 + (3.02 mV)^2 + (1.322 mV)^2 ) )^(1/2) System Accuracy = ±65.90 mV System Accuracy RTI System Accuracy RTI = System Accuracy / Input VoltageSystem Accuracy RTI = ± 0.06590 V / 10 V System Accuracy RTI = 0.659 % For more information, see the Using Calibration to Improve Measurement Accuracy document linked below. Related Links: White Paper: Using Calibration to Improve Measurement Accuracy White Paper: Understanding Instrument Specifications  How to Make Sense Out of the Jargon KnowledgeBase 3IHCT5LE: Absolute Accuracy of Dynamic Signal Acquisition Devices Attachments:
Report Date: 05/05/2003 Last Updated: 11/23/2015 Document ID: 2X4HGEBG
