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During active testing, sensor data, videos, and high-resolution still images collected from an experiment are stored on the MAST Laboratory local 2.5 terabyte repository that is backed-up daily.

When an experiment concludes, MAST staff will provide a secured offsite backup of all data within 24 hours and assist the researchers in uploading data to NEES Project Warehouse in accordance with NEES policy.

MAST Laboratory
2525 4th St SE
Minneapolis, MN 55455

612-626-9561 main
612-624-5964 fax

Dept. of Civil Engineering
500 Pillsbury Drive SE
Minneapolis, MN 55455

612-625-5522 main
612-626-7750 fax

Facilities › Data Acquisition

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MAST Data Acquisition System

MAST Data Acquisition System

The MAST Data Acquisition (DAQ) system is based on the National Instruments SCXI high performance data acquisition solution. The key features include:

  • Simultaneous sampling of 172 voltage channels at ±10 V and 248 channels of quarter bridge 120 ohm strain gauge input.
  • A sampling rate of up to 10Hz for all channels.
  • Lowpass filter: 2Hz for voltage channels and 10Hz for strain channels.
  • All A-to-D conversions are performed with 16 bit resolution.
  • Software-controlled shunt and null-offset calibration of all strain channels, which provides wiring checks and allows better use of measurement range.
  • Integrated wiring system

In addition to collecting sensor data, the DAQ system collects feedback from the control system through analog outputs of the MTS controller, and 3D positional information through the Nikon DMM metrology hardware (see data path diagram).

Nikon Dynamic Measuring Machine

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Nikon DMM
Nikon DMM System

MAST Laboratory has one Nikon Dynamic Measuring Machine (DMM) system. The system consists of a camera, infrared Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs), and control hardware and software. The key features include:

  • 3D position detection of up to 81 LEDs at 100Hz (expandable up to 256 LEDs) in the camera's 17 m^3 field of view.
  • ~± 0.0008 resolution
  • Synchronization of data samples and archives using TTL signals fed from the NI DAQ system (see data path diagram).
  • The ability to perform as-built verifications of specimens, to generate metadata associated with sensor locations, and to measure 3-D displacements of the structural surface.
  • Measurement Accuracy:
    Noise (1σ): 0.00039 in.
    ZoneVolumetric Accuracy (± 2σ)Single Point Accuracy (± 2σ)
    I~35x10-7 in. 4x10-7 in./in24x10-7 in. 3x10-7 in./in
    II~35x10-7 in. 10x10-7 in./in24x10-7 in. 7x10-7 in./in
    III~75x10-7 in. 10x10-7 in./in35x10-7 in. 7x10-7 in./in
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Nikon DMM Accuracy Zone
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DMM LEDs Setup Example
Example setup of Nikon DMM LEDs

Data Acquisition Software

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DAQ Software
MAST DAQ Software

DAQ software for controlling National Instruments hardware has been developed in-house.

Features of DAQ Software include:

  • A highly configurable numeric display designed to show a large number of channels.
  • The option of displaying comprehensive 2-D graphing and information in strip-charting mode and/or limited to a specified date/time range.
  • Streamlined Strain/Voltage/Formula Channel Setup.
  • Selective strain channel shunt and null-offset calibration.
  • Display and archiving of formula channels consisting of simple linear combinations of strain and voltage channel values.
  • Provides live data streaming to Data Turbine for remote viewing (see Telepresence).