Launch CASPOC and Directory
After you install CASPOC, you can launch CASPOC from the Start Menu (START/All Programs/CASPOC/CASPOC Simulation Program).
Or find CASPOC.exe in the CASPOC home directory (the Default home directory is located in: C:\CASPOC\CASPOC.exe, please notice that the directory can change if you change the default directory.)
In CASPOC home directory (see the above figure) there are some important folders which we will use frequently, like:
- /Library - Except the basic circuit components and mathematic operators, CASPOC also provides plenty of libraries which are accessible in this folder. You can also custom your own library here and then you can make use of it easily.
- /Samples - CASPOC provides users plenty of examples corresponding to the different libraries. If you’re interested in certain library but don’t know how to realize it in your simulation, you can go to this folder and find out the corresponding category, like DCDC, electric machine or transformers.
- /Help - Include all the help html files of getting started, user guide and reference guide. You can easily access them by clicking the help button in the software and then read the details in a new webpage with your web browser.
- /iPes - E-learning for power electronics and electrical machine, include the interactive introduction courses taught by Prof. Kolar at the ETH Zurich.
- /Models - Include the model parameters of diode and transformer models.
- /Spice - TopSPICE/Win32 circuit design software package based on the industry standard SPICE simulator program.
- /support - Installation description and hardware dongle driver which you shall install if you choose to use a USB Dongle.
- /Tools - Include several tools for calculating diode parameters, Output filter capacitor, heatsink, IGBT snubber, MOSFET Gate Drive Impedance, and so on.
Software Version: FreeWare/Viewer, CASPOC Full
After you launch CASPOC simulation program, you can see the current version that you’re authorized in the left side. If you follow the steps on Introduction and install CASPOC correctly, you shall find the version is CASPOC Full (or FreeWare for evaluation version).
Basically, there are two kinds of versions without considering the license types. One is FreeWare which stands for limited evaluation version.
If there are more than 6 circuit nodes or 10 blocks in your simulation, FreeWare will become CASPOC Viewer.
But if you launch an existing sample which is more than 6 circuit nodes or 10 blocks, FreeWare will become CASPOC Runnable Viewer, that means you cannot change the configuration of the sample but can execute it and observe the simulation result.
The other one is CASPOC Full which stands for unlimited official version (CASPOC educational or professional)
Software Interface configuration
Before getting started, you can have some basic concepts about the interface of CASPOC as below:
The upper side (Menu Bar) includes all the simulation settings that you’ll use in CASPOC, like basic file editor, import/export function, simulation parameters, co-simulation and library customization.The left side includes all the components and tools provided in CASPOC. The right side there is the animation setting in order to show the variation of current and voltage. The down side includes some necessary tools for experiment design and animation play bar. There is also some information to announce users the current global parameter on the status bar.
How to execute CASPOC examples
In order to have some basic ideas about the architecture of CASPOC, we'll start an existing sample and execute it. To open an existing sample, click this icon on shortcut bar or go to File/Open...
You will probably see the following message to ask if you want to save the current modification. You can choose Yes or No according to your work. If you have not worked yet on CASPOC, you can choose No to avoid saving a blank project.
Then go to CASPOC home directory (Default: C:\CASPOC\) (step 1) and choose folder 'Samples' (step 2). 'Samples' is the folder that we put all the samples which are provided by CASPOC.
In the folder 'Samples', all the existing samples are sorted by different application as below, like green energy, FOC, Power Electronics, or Electrical Machine.
Here we will launch a simple and clear sample in folder 'AnimationObjects'. Click 'AnimationObjects' and then choose 'b2.csi'.
Then we can see the following figure, this is a example of Bridge Rectifier with LC filter. All the components in this example are from Components/Circuit. (We will talk about how to use these components later.) In the Status Bar, there is information of Global Parameters: Tscreen =15ms, dt =10us BE/RK4, #Nodes=5 #Blocks=0.
Here 'Tscreen' stands for Time Screen to control the screen width of the scope. 'dt' stands for simulation step size, all the simulation results will be saved with corresponding simulation time steps. So that the smaller simulation step size will require a more delicate computation and also take more time. The number of '#Node' and '#block' stand for the scale of your simulation model. If you are using the FreeWare, this version is restricted to 6 circuit nodes or 10 blocks.
Now we can execute this sample by clicking and pause it by clicking as below.
While clicking the play button, we can see the animation of the Bridge Rectifier circuit. The color of the wire depends on the current value. If you cannot see the animation, please make sure if you already turn all the animation display shown below. The details of animation display can also be configured in animation option.
During the simulation, you can move your cursor on any component in the Bridge Rectifier circuit, and then you’ll see a little popup which shows the present situation, like voltage, current, or other basic information in the component. The figure below shows the popup of the diode and the inductor.
For the diode, popup includes the info of the ON/OFF state, voltage (V), current (A) and power (Watt).
For the inductor, popup includes the info of the value (H), voltage (V), current (A) and flux linkage (Weber).
In this sample, there are also: The popup of the capacitor includes the info of the value (F), voltage (V), current (A) and the ratio of charge (Coulomb). And the popup of the resistor includes the info of the value (ohm), voltage (V), current (A), and power (Watt).
After the simulation we can see in this sample, there are three scopes which acquire the data from the simulation model. The default background color of the scope is dark blue. CASPOC provides two shortcut buttons on the shortcut toolbar: 'Black/White' and 'Save Ink' two modes. You can access them easily by clicking 'Black/White' or 'Save Ink'. You can also change the display color of the scope by options/background color in the menu bar of the scope.
The three scopes in this sample acquire voltage or current data respectively. SCOPE can collect all kinds of simulation data according to your definition. Every SCOPE can support 20 data trace, and you can mix several different types of data in one SCOPE. We will talk about how to use SCOPE in another tutorial.
In this sample, SCOPE1 acquires the output voltage after the LC filter. SCOPE2 and SCOPE3 acquire the current values from diode D2 and D4 respectively. Because the character of Bridge Rectifier, we can see in the beginning, the current goes through either D1 and D4 or D2 and D3.
Because here the Time Screen (Tscreen) is 15ms, we cannot observe the rectification clearly. In order to observe the simulation time longer, we can change the Time Screen bigger.Click (Or choose Simulation/Simulation Parameters in Menu Bar.) and change Tscreen =100m (100ms = 0.001 second), then click ok.
Re-execute this sample, we will find there are more data after increasing the Tscreen value. Compare SCOPE2 and SCOPE3, it becomes quite obvious that how Bridge Rectifier works.
Next we will observe the function of LC filter. Select the entire circuit and use cursor click one component (DON’T release your cursor).
Then the entire circuit will move with your cursor as below. You can choose a suitable position then release your cursor. Here we will need some space for another SCOPE on the top of the entire circuit.
Enlarge SCOPE1 by using your cursor (step1) in order to observe SCOPE1 clearly. Find the SCOPE icon (step2) in the left bottom corner and put it (SCOPE4) on the top of the workscreen (step3). Enlarge SCOPE4 too.
Connect SCOPE4 and the node between D2 and the inductor L. Notice the connection is well-configured when you can see the block clearly.
Re-execute this sample again. Then you can compare the different of SCOPE1 and SCOPE4.
SCOPE4 is the voltage data before the LC filter and SCOPE1 is the voltage data after the LC filter.
You can also double-click or right-click any SCOPE for observing the details. The following is the details of SCOPE1; you can easily find the output voltage was record by time-varying.
The same as SCOPE2 and SCOPE3. You can see the detailed ON/OFF states of D2 and D4.
Replay simulation animation
If you want to record and replay the animation, you can use the button bar by clicking the first red button to record and then replay or pause by the remaining buttons.
After the record, the time axis will become blue. Then you can use your cursor to move the time point so that all the animations in the sample will change according to the time point you choose. All the scope in this sample will also indicate the time point on the bottom of the scope.
CASPOC provides the output window to announce users if the simulation works correctly. You can click the icon in shortcut toolbar then it will show as below. When you can not run your simulation and there is no installation problem, you can go to this window to check if the there is any error or warning message. Most time the simulation error is caused by the wrong wire drawing. Make sure that you don’t make double drawing, overlay the component on the wire, or disconnect the wire and the node, so that you can save time on debug your simulation scenario.