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Calibration | Spectrum

In general, the decision on calibration will depend on the application and requirements of the customer. The units do contain a calibration source that is used for an internal software calibration. We recommend running a software calibration after warm up and if there is any significant operational temperature changes. If the customer requires calibration against known standards then it is necessary to perform a factory calibration. If this is needed we would typically do it once per year. A factory calibration requires the units to be returned to us so that we can retest all of the specifications (including the accuracy figures as shown in the attached data sheet) against calibrated and traceable instruments and issue a full calibration report.

Internal calibration

All Spectrum Digitizer products contain an internal high accuracy calibration source. This one is used to cover accuracy changes due to temperature and environmental changes. Environmental changes also include changes on the host system where the card is mounted. Running an internal auto calibration needs to be run after complete warming up of the system an the card. Please note that the accuracy specification of the data sheet is valid after warm-up and after auto calibration.

Factory calibration

In factory calibration the internal calibration source and any adjustment settings are calibrated against an external traceable calibration source. The factory calibration covers any aging and temperature changes of the calibration source and all calibration related parts of the hardware. Please note that even directly after factory calibration an internal calibration at your location may be necessary as the factory calibration system and factory calibration environment differs from your system and environment.

Local calibration verification

An alternative to the factory calibration at Spectrum would be a calibration check at a national calibration lab that you need to find locally. This one can check the accuracy after internal calibration of the card against external traceable standards and document the product being inside a desired specification.

As an external lab can't access settings of the internal calibration source there might be an issue if the calibration check fails and the card has to be sent back to Spectrum for factory calibration.