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EA Elektro-Automatik Greatly Expands Tektronix's High-Power Test and Measurement Coverage

Tektronix has a long history of giving the industry a high-fidelity window into high-speed signals with oscilloscopes, probes, signal analyzers and signal sources. Tektronix is a favorite among designers in renewable energy, electric vehicles, and data center power, among other power-related industries. Keithley, also part of the Tektronix family, is a recognized leader in measurement instruments for high-precision voltage and current measurements. However, today’s power technologies combine both sophisticated high-speed control electronics and high-power electronics, and although Tektronix has been leading the test and measurement industry for over 75 years, one of the areas we haven’t explored is power engineering in the kilowatts and up. That has changed now that EA Elektro-Automatik is part of Tektronix.  

Who is EA Elektro-Automatik?

EA Elektro-Automatik (EA), is Europe’s leading supplier of power electronics for R & D and industrial applications. Based in the industrial corridor of North Rhine Westphalia, Germany, EA engineers and manufactures power supplies, high power mains adaptors and electronic loads with or without power feedback in a state-of-the-art 19,000 m² facility. They are also an established player – celebrating 50 years in the industry.

EA Elektro-Automatik and Tektronix executives in EA’s manufacturing facility.

EA Elektro-Automatik and Tektronix executives in EA’s manufacturing facility.

EA Brings New Instruments for More Complete Solutions

EA contributes a wide range of high-power electronic DC power supplies and loads ranging from 100’s of watts up to 3.84 MW. These include high-efficiency bidirectional regenerative powers power supplies that allow engineers to scale up in voltage to 2,000 V or current up to 64,000 A.

These new products complement Tektronix and Keithley instruments and software to provide more complete, high-performance solutions in applications we already serve, such as:

  • Power supply design
  • Double pulse testing
  • Traction inverter design
  • Power semiconductor characterization
  • Battery research and testing

EA also brings products and expertise to address new applications such as:

  • Battery module and pack development and quality assurance testing
  • Battery module and pack emulation
  • Electrolysis research
  • Fuel cell testing and emulation

EA offers several platforms, but for this post we’ll focus on two series.

EA-10000 Series Power Supplies and Loads

The EA-10000 Series comprises over 180 programmable DC power supplies and electronic loads, including bidirectional and bidirectional/regenerative versions. Available power ranges from 600 W to 30 kW, with current up to 1000 A and voltage up to 2000 V. The supplies are autoranging to get the most out of the available power. Power supplies can be connected in parallel – with up to 64 devices producing up to 1.92 MW. An integrated function generator is available for testing specific scenarios like simulating solar array curves, or for simply providing arbitrary waveforms at power.

Front view of EA-PSB 10000 3U high, 15 kW bidirectional power supply/electronic load with regeneration.

EA-PSB 10000 3U high, 15 kW bidirectional power supply/electronic load with regeneration.

These instruments can be controlled via Ethernet, USB or analog input. RS-232, CAN Bus, Profibus, ModBus, Profinet and EtherCat are also available.

Regenerative versions of the bidirectional supplies can return energy to the grid with energy recovery efficiency of greater than 96%.

An industrial version of the EA-10000 Series eliminates the front panel controls and is designed for easy system integration and low cost per kilowatt. The industrial versions can be operated in parallel for up to 3.84 MW.


EA-BT 20000 Battery Tester

Back view of EA-BT 20000 Triple 4U Battery Tester.  Each output can be used to test an

EA-BT 20000 Triple 4U Battery Tester. Each output can be used to test an individual battery pack or they can be connected in parallel for testing larger packs.

EA battery testers are power supplies/loads designed specifically for charging and discharging battery packs. The triple output version of this series can be used to cycle 3 battery packs with a power of up to 10 kW/channel, or the channels can be connected in parallel for up to 30 kW. Rather than dumping the power from battery packs under test, the BT 20000 Series returns power to the grid with more than 96% efficiency. High measurement resolution helps precisely determine battery state of health and end of life. The testers can be controlled via Ethernet, ProfiNet, CAN-FD, or EtherCAT™.

What Makes EA Technology Special?

EA has pioneered a few key technologies that makes it exciting in the world of test and measurement. First, they developed autoranging supplies. Traditional power supplies are only able to output their rated power at a single voltage and current combination. Autoranging supplies can deliver their rated power across a range of voltages and currents. For example, when you don’t need the maximum voltage of your supply, you are able to supply more current and still have the same overall power. This allows you to, in many cases, purchase a supply with lower overall power that will still meet your needs while offering a wider range of voltage and current values.

A chart that shows how EA supplies are autoranging, giving them extra output range while still delivering the same power, 5kW in this image.

A traditional power supply has a rectangular output characteristic. EA supplies are autoranging, giving them extra output range while still delivering the same power, 5kW in this image.

EA has also made advancements by engineering their power supplies and electronic loads entirely with SiC-based semiconductors. This allows them to achieve the highest power density in the industry (60kW in a 6U 19” rack!), while remaining >96% efficient, minimizing the noise and heat generated especially while sinking power. This also facilitates their modular design, allowing up to 64 instruments to placed in parallel and controlled as one, bringing up to 3.84 MW of bidirectional source/sink capability to your disposal.

How are EA Products Sold?

EA products are available worldwide in every market Tektronix products are available. Thanks to EA’s existing worldwide network of sales and service centers, as well as quick turnaround times, there’s no need to wait to find out if our new EA power supplies and electronic loads are right for you. Request information here on our website and our team will reach out to you.

The combination of EA’s power technology with Tektronix’s leading oscilloscope, analyzers and signal sources, together with Keithley source/measure units and precision instruments represents the most precise, most flexible, most efficient solutions for power technology. And we stand we stand behind every instrument with Tektronix’s global service and support organization.