automated test equipment

The value of the automated test equipment (ATE) industry is estimated to be $6 billion in 2019. It seems to reason that this figure will rise as more and more pieces of machinery incorporate electronics whose operation and performance must be verified before they can be put into use or sold.

Defense and aerospace, automotive, and industrial automation, among other industries, employ automated test equipment as a handy data acquisition and diagnostic tool for testing a range of devices.

In addition to guaranteeing that end users of electronic equipment obtain products that work and function as intended, ATE is directly responsible for making sure that they are not put in danger as a result.

We’ll explain about ATE, why it’s beneficial, the parts of an ATE system, how it’s used, the industries that utilize ATE, and finally, if you have a moment, we’d like to share with you our experience servicing ATE customers.

Let’s get started right now without further ado.

Learn About Automated Test Equipment

Automated test equipment (ATE), sometimes known as automatic testing equipment, is the computerized gear used to conduct and analyze the results of stress, performance, and quality tests on electronic devices and systems. As the name suggests, ATE automates often manual electronic test tools and procedures while requiring little human involvement.

Equipment for automated testing is frequently referred to as automated testing equipment. They both employ the same ATE abbreviation. They just refer to the same equipment under different names.

The term “device under test” (DUT), “unit under test,” or “equipment under test” is typically used to describe the device whose characteristics the ATE evaluates (EUT).

To assure proper performance, functionality, and the safety of individuals who will use, or directly and indirectly benefit from the usage of, such devices, ATE performs testing on many of the electronic devices currently in use.

Printed circuit boards (PCBs), hard disc drives (HDDs), automotive systems and modules, as well as the many electronic systems and line-replaceable units (LRUs) that support aircraft, spacecraft, and satellites, collectively known as avionics, are among the devices examined by ATE.

Components of Automated Test Equipment

The five primary parts of a typical automated test system are hardware, software, test instruments, signal sources, and test probes or handlers.


Equipment such as common rack-mount workstations and servers, power supplies, interface modules, PCIe backplanes, and related PXI modules, analog inputs and outputs, digital input/output, embedded controllers, and AC/DC outlets.


Software for managing data collecting, storage, reporting, and analysis for tests as well as other applications.

Test Instruments:

Test equipment, such as an inductance, capacitance, and resistance (LCR) meter, a digital storage oscilloscope (DSO), or a digital multimeter.

Signal Sources:

Signal generators, including arbitrary waveform generators (AWG), function generators, pulse generators, and radio frequency (RF) generators.

Handlers or Test Probes:

Connecting a test instrument to a UUT, DUT, or EUT using test probes or handlers.

These components are typically combined into all-in-one test stations, which range widely in size and portability from tiny, mobile test stations to enormous, stationary test towers that resemble the server rack cabinets seen in data centers.

It’s important to remember that not all automated test solutions use the same hardware, software, test instruments, signal sources, probes, or handlers; these configurations vary greatly depending on the device being tested by the customer and the parameters requiring measurement.

Automated Test Equipment Working 

ATE manages, observes, collects data from, and draws conclusions from a variety of test tools and signal sources, including:

  • Measure voltage, current, and resistance with digital multimeters.
  • LCR meters are used to measure resistance, inductance, and capacitance.
  • DSOs, or digital storage oscilloscopes, are used to display signal voltages and analyze their amplitude, distortion, and other properties.
  • Vector signal generators (VSGs) or radio frequency (RF) equipment is used to create RF signals.
  • AWGs are tools for creating electrical waveforms that the user specifies.