This rig gives students the ability to connect real electronic components to a circuit, which they can then test over the internet using real test instruments with live data.
The Netlab has its own dedicated server that is connected to the Internet on one side, allowing users to access the rig. On the other side, the server communicates with a number of programmable laboratory instruments via the IEEE 488.2 standard interface. These instruments include a digital oscilloscope, a function generator and a digital multimeter. All instruments and components are also connected to a 16x16 programmable matrix relay switch which provides the user with the opportunity to wire and configure various passive electrical circuits over the Internet. Special software, the Circuit Builder, has been developed for this purpose. Netlab can support up to three students working with the experiment at the same time, therefore encouraging collaborative laboratory practices.