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Title: Recent Developments On Solid State Thermal Voltage Converters
Author: Leslie L. Szepes
Source: 1986 Measurement Science Conference
Year Published: 1986
Abstract: Traditionally, the highest accuracy method of measuring the RMS value of arbitrary waveforms has been the use of thermal voltage converters. These thermocouple devices operate by measuring equivalent heating in a low reactance resistor caused by an unknown waveform and a known DC voltage. Monolithic analogs to these devices have been developed using thin film resistor technology and the temperature dependency of the forward bias voltage of the pn junction, The advantages brought to this method by solid state integration include small size, reduced thermal mass, decreased settling time, mechanical ruggedness and a near zero DC reversal error. Output levels are raised from the millivolt range to about one volt, reducing sensitivity to noise and drift, and easing the requirements on the null detection circuitry. Recent advances in packaging technology have improved further the frequency response of the monolithic device, opening a new set of applications for this device.