How to Test Capacity of a Lead Acid Battery with a Source Measure Unit

Batteries are characterized by their ability to deliver the required current over some period of time, called Amp-hours. Also known as capacity, different types of batteries have different characterizations curves that show their amp-hours as a funciton of time. Veirfying the manufacturer's capacity after the battery has been used for some time is known as a battery charge-discharge test. In this video, applications engineer Barry Bolling uses a GS610 source measure unit to perform a charge-discharge test on a lead acid battery. Source measure units, devices that funciton both as a power supply and a multimeter/electronic load, are ideal for these types of tests. 

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GS610 Source Measure Unit

The GS610 is made up of a programmable current and voltage source, a voltmeter, and an ammeter. Each function can be combined into numerous operation modes.

Source Measure Units

A Source Measurement Unit (SMU) is a flexible test instrument which is capable of both sourcing and measuring voltage and/or current at the same time.