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Vernier Energy Sensor User Manual

Order Code: VES-BTA

The Vernier Energy Sensor allows students to easily measure current and voltage. Source terminals connect to energy output sources such as model wind turbines or solar panels, and Load terminals connect to loads such as LEDs, water pumps, resistors, or variable loads.

Note: Vernier products are designed for educational use. Our products are not designed nor are they recommended for any industrial, medical, or commercial process such as life support, patient diagnosis, control of a manufacturing process, or industrial testing of any kind.

What's Included

  • Vernier Energy Sensor

Compatible Software

Choose a platform below to see its compatibility requirements.

LabQuest
InterfaceLabQuest App
LabQuest® 3Full support
LabQuest 2 (discontinued)Full support
LabQuest (discontinued)Full support
Computers
Software
InterfaceGraphical Analysis App for Computers
Version 4.10
Logger Pro
Version 3.16
Logger Lite
Version 1.9.4
LabQuest MiniFull supportFull supportFull support
LabQuest® 3Full supportFull supportFull support
LabQuest 2 (discontinued)Full supportFull supportFull support
LabQuest StreamFull support 1Full supportFull support 2
Go!LinkPartial support 3Partial support 3Partial support 3
LabQuest (discontinued)Full supportFull supportFull support

Compatibility Notes

  1. Connect LabQuest Stream via USB. Future software updates will support connection via Bluetooth® technology
  2. Connect LabQuest Stream via USB. Wireless connection is not supported.
  3. This interface can collect voltage data or current data but not both simultaneously. As a result, the software cannot calculate resistance and power data.
Chromebook
Software
InterfaceGraphical Analysis App for Chrome
Version 4.10
LabQuest MiniFull support
LabQuest® 3Full support
LabQuest 2 (discontinued)Full support
LabQuest StreamFull support 1
Go!LinkPartial support 2
LabQuest (discontinued)Full support

Compatibility Notes

  1. Connect LabQuest Stream via USB. Future software updates will support connection via Bluetooth® technology
  2. This interface can collect voltage data or current data but not both simultaneously. As a result, the software cannot calculate resistance and power data.
iOS
Software
InterfaceGraphical Analysis App for iOS
Version 4.10
Graphical Analysis GW for iOS
Version 4.0.6
LabQuest StreamFull supportPartial support 1
LabQuest® 3Full support 2Full support 2
LabQuest 2 (discontinued)Full support 2Full support 2

Compatibility Notes

  1. Requires manual setup of Resistance and Power data using calculated columns.
  2. iOS and Android devices can only connect to LabQuest 2 or LabQuest 3 via Wireless Data Sharing.
Android
Software
InterfaceGraphical Analysis App for Android
Version 4.10
Graphical Analysis GW for Android
Version 3.2
Google Science Journal
Version 1.2.259
LabQuest StreamFull supportPartial support 1Incompatible
LabQuest® 3Full support 2Full support 2Incompatible
LabQuest 2 (discontinued)Full support 2Full support 2Incompatible

Compatibility Notes

  1. Software cannot calculate resistance or power data.
  2. iOS and Android devices can only connect to LabQuest 2 or LabQuest 3 via Wireless Data Sharing.
Arduino
Software
InterfaceArduino
Vernier Arduino® Interface ShieldFull support
LabVIEW
Software
InterfaceNI LabVIEW
SensorDAQFull support
Vernier myDAQ AdapterFull support 1
Go!LinkPartial support 2
LabQuest MiniFull support
LabQuest StreamFull support
LabQuest® 3Full support
LabQuest 2 (discontinued)Full support
LabQuest (discontinued)Full support

Compatibility Notes

  1. You can only read the raw count/raw voltage output by this sensor. You must do the programming to convert to proper sensor units.
  2. This interface can collect voltage data or current data but not both simultaneously. As a result, the software cannot calculate resistance and power data.
Texas Instruments
Software
InterfaceEasyData
Version 2.4/4.0/5.2
DataMate
Version 1.15
TI-84 SmartViewDataQuest
Version 4.2
TI-Nspire Software
EasyLinkPartial support 1 2IncompatiblePartial support 1 3Partial support 1Partial support 1 3
CBL 2Partial support 4 5Partial support 4 5 6IncompatibleIncompatibleIncompatible
TI-Nspire Lab Cradle (discontinued)IncompatibleIncompatibleIncompatibleFull support 7Full support 7

Compatibility Notes

  1. This interface can collect voltage data or current data but not both simultaneously. As a result, the software cannot calculate resistance and power data.
  2. Use with TI-84 Plus calculators only.
  3. Requires an Easy to Go! adapter
  4. CBL 2 and LabPro interfaces cannot be used with TI-84 Plus CE calculators.
  5. Software cannot calculate resistance or power data.
  6. DataMate cannot be used with color screen TI-84 Plus calculators; use EasyData with these calculators.
  7. Requires manual setup of meter and data columns for resistance and power data

Getting Started

  1. Connect the sensor to the interface (LabQuest Mini, LabQuest 2, etc.).
  2. Start the appropriate data-collection software (Logger Pro, Logger Lite, LabQuest App) if not already running, and choose New from File menu.

See the following link for additional connection information:

www.vernier.com/start/ves-bta

WARNING: To avoid possible electric shock or personal injury, do not connect the red or black leads to household power. This product is designed to measure low-voltage sources such as classroom-scale wind turbines and small solar panels. It should never be connected to an electrical outlet.

Using the Product

Zeroing the Sensor

Both Current and Voltage should be zeroed in the data-collection software prior to collecting data. To do this, disconnect the load and source and connect the two Load terminals with a wire. Zero the sensors in the software. Note: Any resistance value shown in the meter in the software is not meaningful when the current and voltage values are near zero.

Connecting Devices to the Energy Sensor

The Vernier Energy Sensor provides a pair of five-way binding posts, labeled Source, to connect the device that is generating power, such as a model wind turbine, solar panel, battery, power supply, or function generator. Another pair of binding post terminals, labeled Load, connect to the load. The load can be any electrical device that is meant to run on DC electricity at a voltage that matches the power source. Examples include the Vernier Variable Load (order code VES-VL), the Vernier Resistor Board (order code VES-RB), single component resistors, motors, or LEDs.

These terminals will accept standard banana plugs, alligator clips, or bare wires and provide a solid electrical connection.

Videos

Specifications

Source input potential range

± 30 V

Source input current range

± 1000 mA

Linearity

 

  • Potential Sensor: 0.01%
  • Current Sensor: 0.01%

13-bit resolution (using SensorDAQ)

 

  • Potential Sensor: 0.008 V
  • Current Sensor: 0.26 mA

12-bit resolution (using LabPro, LabQuest 2, LabQuest, LabQuest Mini, TI-Nspire Lab Cradle)

  • Potential Sensor: 0.016 V
  • Current Sensor: 0.52 mA

Input impedance

Potential Sensor: > 2 MΩ

Insertion resistance

Current Sensor: 0.1 Ω

Frequency response

 

  • Potential Sensor: –3dB @ 160 Hz
  • Current Sensor: –3dB @ 160 Hz

Stored calibration (Potential Sensor)

  • slope: –12.526 V/V
  • intercept: 31.315 V

Stored calibration (Current Sensor)

  • slope: –422.09 mA/V
  • intercept: 1055.25 mA

How the Sensor Works

The Vernier Energy Sensor has two BTA connectors: a Voltage connector and a Current connector. When both connectors are connected to a Vernier interface, the data-collection software automatically identifies the sensor and loads a data-collection setup. If you are using the recommended versions of Logger Pro, Logger Lite, or LabQuest App for data collection, this data-collection setup is loaded when both connectors are used. Calculated columns and meters for power, resistance, and energy are created in the file. If you are not using one of the other software titles listed in the Compatible Software section, the sensors will auto-ID as Current and Voltage (Potential) sensors. You will have to manually set up the calculated columns and meters for power, resistance, and energy.

If you connect only the Voltage connector or the Current connector, the Energy Sensor will function as a simple voltage or current sensor.

The Vernier Energy Sensor measures the potential across the load, as well as the current through the load.

Circuit diagram of how the Vernier Energy Sensor is wired internally

Care and Maintenance

Do not wrap the cable tightly around the sensor for storage. Repeatedly doing so can irreparably damage the wires and is not covered under warranty.

Troubleshooting

For troubleshooting and FAQs, see www.vernier.com/til/3181

Repair Information

If you have watched the related product video(s), followed the troubleshooting steps, and are still having trouble with your Vernier Energy Sensor, contact Vernier Technical Support at support@vernier.com or call 888-837-6437. Support specialists will work with you to determine if the unit needs to be sent in for repair. At that time, a Return Merchandise Authorization (RMA) number will be issued and instructions will be communicated on how to return the unit for repair.

Accessories/Replacements

Warranty

Vernier warrants this product to be free from defects in materials and workmanship for a period of five years from the date of shipment to the customer. This warranty does not cover damage to the product caused by abuse or improper use. This warranty covers educational institutions only.

Contact Support

Fill out our online support form or call us toll-free at 1-888-837-6437.

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