SHVPS Single Channel High Voltage Power Supply (Legacy)

The release of hvps-x means the end of development and support for the original SHVPS described on this page. The files and instructions remain accessible, but we won’t provide upgrades or support. The reason for stopping support is that we don’t have any SHVPS left to work on, nor any LabVIEW license to work on the user interface. If you want to assemble a high voltage power supply, we recommend our new hvps-x.


The Single Channel High Voltage Power Supply (SHVPS) consists of a programmable voltage source capable of producing a user-controllable HV DC voltage. A fast switch allows to quickly turn the voltage on and off to create a square voltage of a frequency up to 1 kHz.

Single Channel HVPS

Learn How to assemble a SHVPS

Learn How to use a SHVPS

LabView user interface

Python user interface


Download the components of SHVPS

The SHVPS philosophy

The HVPS has been developed primarily to drive and control Dielectric Elastomer Actuators (DEAs), which are electrostatic soft transducers that require a high driving voltage (up to 5 kV depending on thickness) at low current (typically <100 uA). Most commercial high voltage power supplies are ill-suited for DEAs: they are bulky, heavy, not to mention utterly expensive.

With Peta-pico-Voltron, we wanted to develop a do-it-yourself HVPS packing a lot of functionalities into a small footprint. We have dedicated a lot of effort to design an elegant hardware solution in conjunction with a firmware that contains a lot of functionalities. In addition, a comprehensive graphic user interface, and library of function make Peta-pico-Voltron very easy to use and to integrate with other instruments.

Main features


hvps concept

The SHVPS consists of a programmable high voltage source coupled to a fast switch. The programmable source generates a precise voltage, and the fast switch allows to connect ground or the source voltage to the output connection, thus making it possible to generate either continuous or square waveforms.

Programmable voltage source

  • Voltage rating: HVPS can be manufactured with different maximal voltages. We have built and tested units with the following ratings: 5kV, 3kV, 2kV, 1.2kV and 500V. The SHVPS uses an EMCO A-Series DC/DC converter, and any model can be used to build a HVPS.
  • Voltage set point resolution: 0.1% of full scale.
  • Voltage control modes: Internal (open loop or regulated), or external analog voltage.

Fast switch

  • 3 different switching modes can be used: DC voltage, square signal, or 0V (off), as shown on the 2 figures below:
  • Frequency range: 0.001 Hz to >1kHz.
  • Switching slope for 5kV HVPS and full-scale switching: ~15V/us
  • Source of switching signal: Internal timer, manual push-button, or external 5V TTL signal.


  • User-friendly GUI providing access to all functions
    • Ability to control several SHVPS in parallel.
    • Safety feature to limit the output voltage below a user-defined level.
    • Memory function to store parameters in the unit.


  • LabVIEW library with all the necessary functions required to program the SHVPS and to synchronize it with other instruments.


  • 5kV SHVPS
  • (Datasheets for other model will follow when available)
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