This page contains Syst DC/AC course materials and relevant information. Toggle the tabs below to view all the content of this course area.
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Courses in DC and AC circuits, alternately called Circuit Analysis I and II, are traditionally the first courses that a student in an AAS degree electronics technology program takes. What is typically missing in such courses is some perspective with regard as to why this theory is being taught and how it fits in with every-day electronic applications. The relevance commonly escapes students thereby leaving them wondering about the context of the material.
Most electronic technology degree programs were established in the 1970 and 1980s and targeted towards filling engineering technician jobs. Such jobs are no longer widely available because of the major changes that have occurred in electronic design and how equipment is implemented today. Electronics technicians’ no longer design and prototype electrical components, engineers now develop computer simulations, which serve that purpose. Hence, the heavy math analysis and design approach of most DC/AC Circuit courses today is less relevant and out of touch with current industry needs.
Most modern electronics technician work involves one or more of the following: installation, testing, manufacturing, operation, maintenance, service, troubleshooting, and repair, of the equipment making up a system. While there are some discrete transistor, resistor, capacitor, diode circuits in use, ICs are used predominately. It is not possible to access individual components or even circuits within the larger ICs. Further, most ICs are far too large and complex for even the most experienced engineer to understand.
It has become more economical and faster for technicians to discard defective circuits and modules, replacing them with new ones. Since the technician has only access to IC or module inputs, outputs, and DC power, rarely is troubleshooting and repair to the component level even attempted. As a result, technicians no longer need to know about intimate circuit details. It is more important for technicians to know systems specifications, operation, interfaces, and the input/output signals involved.
The modern technician works with a wide variety of electronic interfaces used to connect one circuit or piece of equipment to another. It is essential that they know how to test and measure a unit’s operation and specifications correctly, according to the systems’ standards. The systems approach recommends additions to and deletions from traditional DC/AC courses in order to bring them more in line with current industry requirements. The emphasis should be on testing, measuring and troubleshooting, as it applies to a wide range of industries making and using electronics.
DC/AC Instructional Materials List Last Update:
May 6, 2011
Instructor Presentation: Introduction to Semiconductor Materials
This PowerPoint presentation provides an early introduction to semiconductor devices prior to a formal course to reinforce their importance and their total dominance of electronics hardware. It defines semiconductors and shows basic atomic structures. It summarizes types of semiconductor materials and introduces PN junctions and diodes. Gives an overview of the concept of a transistor and how it is used in electronics. Also included is a brief introduction to integrated circuits. *Semiconductor Materials Assessment
Instructor Presentation: An Introduction to AC Power Distribution System
In today's modern electronics systems a technician must be prepared to work with AC power systems such as AC power wiring to equipment, AC to DC power supplies, or AC distribution systems with circuit breakers or fuses. This presentation covers AC power generation, distribution, and usage in today's homes and electronics systems.
Student Guide: Agilent U3000 Power Supply Lab Activity Part 1
This lab activity introduces you to the basic theory and operation of a lab power supply. The lab is focused on using the power supply as a tool to power electronic systems. Power supply theory, terminology, and operation are stressed. Since all systems require a power supply, a technician needs to understand the basic theory of operation, the common terminology used with all power supplies, and, ultimately, their efficient use. Technicians setup, use, and test power supplies in virtually all job classifications. Therefore, power supply functionally becomes a required skill of the job.
Student Guide: Agilent U3000 Digital Multimeter Lab Activity Part 2
This lab activity introduces you to the basic theory and operation of a lab digital multimeter (DMM). The lab is focused on using the DMM as a tool to measure voltage, current, and resistance. DMM measurement theory, terminology, and operation are stressed. Since all system tests require a DMM, a technician needs to understand the basic theory of operation, the common terminology used with all DMMs, and, ultimately, their efficient use. Technicians setup and use DMMs in virtually all job classifications. Therefore, DMM operation becomes a required skill of the job.
Student Guide: Agilent U3000 Oscilloscope Lab Activity Part 3
This lab activity introduces you to the basic theory and operation of a lab oscilloscope. The lab is focused on using the oscilloscope as a tool to measure voltage, time, and frequency. Oscilloscope measurement theory, terminology, and operation are stressed. Since most all system tests require a oscilloscope for complex signal measurement, a technician needs to understand the basic theory of operation, the common terminology used with all oscilloscopes, and, ultimately, their efficient use. Technicians setup and use oscilloscopes in virtually all job classifications. Therefore, oscilloscope operation becomes a required skill of the job.
Student Guide: Amp Meter System and Design Testing Lab
This lab activity brings together all the principles and laws of parallel circuits. The primary purpose of the lab is to design, construct, and test a multi-range ammeter. In the process of doing this lab activity, the principles of Ohm's Law, Watt's Law, Kirchhoff's Parallel Circuit Laws, and the basic operation of an analog and a digital meter movement will be reviewed and emphasized. The interrelationships between various parts will be highlighted and a basic amperage measurement system will be constructed and tested.
Student Guide: Volt Meter System and Design Testing Lab
The purpose of this lab is to bring together all the principles and laws of series circuits. In this lab you will design, construct, and test a multi-range voltmeter. In the process of doing this lab activity, the principles of Ohm's Law, Watt's Law, Kirchhoff's Series Circuit Laws, and the basic operation of an analog and a digital meter movement will be reviewed and emphasized. The interrelationships between various parts will be highlighted and a basic voltage measurement system will be constructed and tested.
Student Guide: Solar Energy Power System Lab
The purpose of this lab is to be able to measure and calculate basic values such as voltage, current, power, and efficiencies for a power system. Alternative energy is a hot topic these days and much emphasis is being placed on being "green." A "green" system is one that was intentionally designed with high-energy efficiency in mind and also that it be more environmental friendly that previous systems. As time passes more and more alternative energy systems will be placed "on-line." A technician must have the skills to measure such systems and determine if components are in need of replacement and if the systems are operating within operating specifications.
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DC Circuits or Circuit Analysis I
Introduction to the Electronics Industry and careers a. Segments of the electronics industry
b. How the industry works
c. Jobs and careers
Introduction to systems a. Systems defined
b. Elements of a system
c. System examples
Introduction to Electricity (Voltage, Current, and Resistance) a. Atomic Structure
b. Electrical Charge
f. Electrical Circuits
g. Basic Circuit Measurements
a. Current Calculations
b. Voltage Calculations
c. Resistance Calculations
d. The Current, Voltage, Resistance Relations
Power and Energy
a. Power in Electric Circuits
b. Resistor Power Ratings
c. Energy Loss and Voltage Drop in Resistance
DC Series Resistive Circuits
a. Resistors in Series
b. Rules and Laws for Series Circuits
c. Voltage Dividers
e. Troubleshooting Series Circuits
DC Parallel Resistive Circuits
a. Resistors in Parallel
b. Rules and Laws for Parallel Circuits
c. Current Sources
d. Current Dividers and Applications
e. Troubleshooting Parallel Circuits
DC Series Parallel Circuits
a. Series-parallel Relationships
b. Analysis of Series-Parallel Circuits
c. Loaded Voltage Dividers
d. Ladder Networks and the Wheatstone Bridge
Magnetism and Electromagnetism
a. Magnetic Fields
e. Applications of Electromagnetism and Induction
Introduction to semiconductors and basic systems
a. Semiconductors defined
b. Diodes and how they work
d. Introduction to transistors and ICs
e. The basic power supply as a system
AC Circuits or Circuit Analysis II
Introduction to Alternating Current and Voltage
a. Sine waves
b. Non-sinusoidal Waveforms
c. Voltage measures, frequency, period.
Capacitance and Inductance
a. Definition, units of measure and physical properties
b. Circuit configurations, total capacitance and inductance
c. DC and transient analysis of RC and RL circuits
d. Capacitance and inductance in AC Circuits
a. Step up/step down
b. Loading and Reflected Load
c. Impedance Matching
a. Typical Circuit Configurations and Total Impedance
b. Power in RC Circuits
a. Circuit Configurations and Total Impedance
b. Power in RL Circuits
a. Circuit Configurations and Total Impedance
b. Power in RLC Circuits
a. Voltage and Current Sources
b. Thevenin’s Theorem
c. Maximum Power Theorem
Wire and cable
a. Types and sizes of wire
b. Types of cable
c. Cable characteristics
d. Introduction to transmission lines
a. Operation and use of the oscilloscope
b. Operation and use of the function generator
a. An approach to troubleshooting
b. Troubleshooting methods for DC/AC circuits
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