Voltage-to-digital converter design

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Virginia Polytechnic Institute

This thesis treats broad aspects of voltage-to-digital converter design. Particular emphasis is placed on material related to designing a converter to satisfy a set of converter specifications that is given in the introduction of the thesis.

The converter design is first considered in terms of basic conversion techniques. One technique, known as"successive approximation,” seems best to satisfy the requirements of the design specifications. The “successive-approximation" voltage-to-digital converter requires that its input voltage be compared to a voltage that is systematically generated within the converter. The voltage generated within the converter is derived from digital information. When the internal voltage equals the external applied voltage, a conversion is accomplished and the converter can output its digital information as the numerical equivalent of its input voltage. A major part of the thesis is concerned with basic approaches that might be used in generating a voltage from digital information in a manner that is fast, accurate, stable, and compatible with a fast, accurate, stable comparison operation. Another major part of the thesis presents analysis of specific circuits that are used in the construction of a converter designed to satisfy the introduction’s specifications. A report on the performance of a converter built with the just mentioned circuits is included.