PicoScope has a range of accessories that are designed to help you test engine ignition systems.
Click on the individual items' descriptions for more information.
Coil on Plug Probe and Cable
The Coil On Plug detector acts as a secondary winding to a nearby coil. It can be used to probe secondary ignition without making any connection and it can also be used to test other inductive components such as solenoids and injectors.
HT Extension Leads and Secondary Ignition Pickup
Modern vehicles with Coil On Plug technology do not have accessible plug wires. The extension leads allow you to use your seconday ignition pickups. Secondary ignition pickups use a capacitive voltage divider to reduce the voltage from tens of kilovolts to a level that can be applied to the oscilloscope. The ground connection forms part of the divider and it is crucial that each lead is properly grounded for each channel of the oscilloscope.
MixMaster and Accessories
The MixMaster allows you to see the secondary ignition pulses on multiple (up to 12) cylinders simultaneously. Please note that the Short Secondary Ignition Pickups (PICO-TA027 and PICO-PP339 set) do not have ground leads like the MI074. They use the ground provided by the MixMaster (via the PICO-TA031 ground lead). These leads are therefore not suitable for direct connection to the oscilloscope, use the PICO-MI074 instead.
An attenuator might not look much like an ignition accessory but it is essential when probing the ignition coil primary, or any circuit that uses a coil such as an injector, relay or solenoid. It protects the scope from the high voltage spikes (often called back EMF) which are produced when current stops flowing in a coil. Always remember to use your attenuators whenever you probe inductive circuits.
Note: Never connect directly to the ignition secondary leads or spark plugs. Always use (and ground) the proper capacitive leads or COP probe. The attenuator will not protect the scope from the tens of kilovolts in secondary ignition circuits.