Course detail

Virtual Instrumentation in Automation

FEKT-BPA-VIAAcad. year: 2023/2024

The course deals with programming of measurement systems and devices with focus on virtual instrumentation and LabVIEW development system. Students will learn the structure and usage of this software development environment from National Instruments and will be able to program PC applications in it. 

Language of instruction


Number of ECTS credits


Mode of study

Not applicable.

Offered to foreign students

Of all faculties

Entry knowledge

The student who enrols this course should be familiar with commonly used methods for measurement of electrical and non-electrical quantities, describe the fundamental properties of specialized instruments and discuss the possibilities of their usage and selection of an appropriate sensor for the measurement. Students should also be able to self-study from the available interactive learning materials and have such language skills to understand educational materials in English.

Rules for evaluation and completion of the course

Maximally 100 points for computer exercises where students can earn up to 25 points for two written tests during the semester (10+15 points), up to 25 points for one individual exercise (project) and up to 50 points for final computer test. Graded credit is given at minimal score of 50 points. Mandatory participation in computer exercises, in case of absence the exercise work can be supplemented with a self-study of interactive learning materials. Two excused absences are tolerated.


The course goal is to introduce LabVIEW development system to students and teach them to use this environment for programming of measurement applications for PC. It includes explanation of the specifics of graphical programming methods in LabVIEW, usage of universal hardware devices for measurement tasks and common methods for their configuration.
Graduate is able to program basic PC applications in LabVIEW. He knows this development environment and can configure it. He can also work with auxiliary programs suitable for configuration of versatile measurement devices (NI MAX).

Study aids

Not applicable.

Prerequisites and corequisites

Not applicable.

Basic literature

JENNINGS, R., DE LA CUEVA, F. LabVIEW Graphical Programming. Fifth Edition, 2019. McGraw-Hill Education. ISBN 9781260135268. (EN)
ESSICK, J. Hands On Introduction to LabVIEW for Scientists and Engineers. 4th Edition. 2018. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0190853068. (EN)

Recommended reading

Not applicable.


Classification of course in study plans

  • Programme BPA-ELE Bachelor's

    specialization BPA-PSA , 3. year of study, summer semester, compulsory-optional

Type of course unit



13 hours, optionally

Teacher / Lecturer


1) Introduction to virtual instrumentation.
2) The NI LabVIEW development environment, its basic programming structures and the method of controlling the program run by data flow.
3) How to work with files in LabVIEW, specialized functions for working with files.
4) Design patterns in LabVIEW, modularity of created programs.
5) Error handling and program debugging in LabVIEW.
6) Asynchronous communication inside the application created in the LabVIEW environment.
7) Programming resources for asynchronous data transfer in the application. Use of queues.
8) Control of the program by events. Advanced design patterns for creating applications in LabVIEW.
9) Ways to programmatically control the user interface in an application created in LabVIEW. Use of references.
10) Hardware measurement tools, DAQ devices, DAQmx drivers.
11) Improving existing VIs and creating executable applications.
12) Tips and Tricks in LabVIEW.
13) Recapitulation of the important topics of the subject. 

Laboratory exercise

26 hours, compulsory

Teacher / Lecturer


1) LabVIEW – introduction, debugging, implementation of VI.
2) LabVIEW – basic programming structures, timing.
3) LabVIEW - data structures, work with resources.
4) LabVIEW - work with files, state machines, variables.
5) LabVIEW – asynchronous communication, design patterns. Test No. 1 - basic programming structures and methods.
6) LabVIEW - user interface control. Project assignment.
7) LabVIEW - DAQmx, work with hardware.
8) Work on the project. Test No. 2 - advanced programming structures.
9) Work on the project.
10) Work on the project.
11) Project presentation (first half of students).
12) Project presentation (second half of students).
13) Credit test.