ENGINEERING TRIPOS PART IIB – 2011/2012
Module 4B13 - Electronic Sensors and Instrumentation
Dr P.A. Robertson (par10@eng)
16 lectures (including examples classes)
||Material / Format / Timing / Marks
Lecture Syllabus / Written exam (1.5 hours) / Start of Easter Term / 100 %
The aim of this module is to introduce students to state-of-the-art practice in electronic instrumentation systems, including the design of sensor/transducer elements for physical measureands, their respective interface electronics and precision measurement techniques.
Temperature & Strain Sensors and Interface Electronics (3L, Dr P.A. Robertson)
- Description of
thermocouples, thermistors and strain gauges and associated electronics.
- Drift, noise and bandwidth
considerations, signal to noise ratio improvement.
Precision Measurements (2L, Dr P.A. Robertson)
- Voltage measurements: thermal emfs, guarding, shielding. Precision ADC methods
- Time and frequency measurements: stable frequency sources, timer-counter techniques
- Current measurements: current transformers, 4-terminal measurements of high current
Electromagnetic devices (4L, Dr P.A. Robertson)
- Selected revision of
electromagnetic theory and its application to electronic sensors.
- Flux gate, inductive and
Hall effect magnetic devices and interface electronics.
- Synchronous detection
method applied to fluxgate sensor.
- Laser range finder and velocity sensing
Microfabricated sensors (3L, Dr P.A. Robertson)
- Overview of silicon micromachining techniques and their application in accelerometers, gyroscopes, automotive air-bag sensors and pressure transducers. Physical priciples of operation and related signal processing electronics.
Ultrasonic transducers (3L, Dr P.A. Robertson)
- Description of piezo-electric
devices, theory and application in practical sensor designs.
- Case studies of the
Polaroid range finder, Doppler motion detector and an electronic gas
- Electronic circuits for
driving transducers and signal detection methods.
Practical Demonstration Lecture (1L, Dr P.A.Robertson)
- Evaluation of micromachined accelerometers and gyroscopes.
- Flux-gate magnetometer using synchronous detection
- Ultrasonic motion and distance sensing.
On completion of the module students should be able to:
- Design circuits to interface to simple temperature and strain measurement devices
- Demonstrate a knowledge of frequency sources and measurement circuits;
- Measure high currents using 4 terminal devices and transformers;
- Describe how micromachined silicon sensors are made, their operation and merits;
- Describe a range of ultrasonic transducers, their applications and associated electronics;
- Understand the operation of electromagnetic sensors for flux, current and position sensing;
- Design and analyse sensor circuits and estimate signal to noise ratios;
- Design an appropriate interface circuit for a sensor with given characteristics;
- Produce an outline design of an instrumentation system to monitor a range of physical parameters including pressure, temperature, flow, position and velocity.
Please see the Booklist for Group B Courses for references for this module.
Last updated: August 2011