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Basic concepts of Measurements

Instrument
A device for determining the value or magnitude of a quantity or variable

Accuracy Accuracy*
Closeness with which an instrument reading approaches the true value of the variable being measured.

Precision*
Measure of the reproducibility of the results Measure of the degree to which successive measurements differ from one another

Sensitivity Sensiti it
Ratio of output signal or response of the instrument to a change of input or measured variable.

Resolution
The smallest change in measured value to which the instrument will respond

Errors
Deviation from the true value of the measured variable

Accuracy
Degree of closeness or conformity to the true value

Precision
Degree of agreement within a group of measurements or instruments Composed of two characteristics
Conformity Significant Figures

Accuracy Vs Precision Example 1.


Consider an ammeter which posses high degree of precision by virtue of its clear legible finely divided distinct scale and knife edge pointer legible, divided, with mirror arrangement to remove parallax. LC=(1/100) of Ampere.
But the zero adjustment is wrong

Now every time we take a reading, the ammeter is as precise as ever, Now, reading ever and the readings are consistent. However, the readings are not accurate since they do not confirm to the truth.

Example 2.
Consider a known voltage of 100V. Five reading are taken: 104V, 103V, 105V, 103V 105V 103V and 105V Here the accuracy is 5% while the 105V. precision is 1%. The instrument can be calibrated so that it could be used properly.

Accuracy Vs Precision By calibration, accuracy can be improved upon but not the precision of the instrument.
Although the readings are close together, they have a small scatter and g g g , y thus have a high degree of precision, but the results are far from accurate.

When it is stated that a set of reading shows precision, it means that the results agree among themselves.
Agreement is no guarantee of accuracy, as there may be some g g y, y disturbing effect that cause all the measured values to be in error.

Significant Figures (SF)


Convey the actual information regarding the magnitude and the measurement precision of a quantity. quantity The more SF, the greater is the precision of the measurement

The result is only as accurate as the least accurate measurement The number of SF in multiplication may increase rapidly Examples of SF

Methods of Measurement
Direct method
Unknown quantity (Measurand) is directly compared against a standard Common for the measurement of physical quantity like length, mass and time length

Indirect method

Measuring Instruments g
Absolute Instruments (AI)
Give the magnitude of the quantity in terms of physical constant of the instrument

Secondary Instruments (SI)


Quantity can be measured by observing the output indicated by the instrument Calibrated by comparison with an absolute instrument

Working with AI for routine work is time consuming since every time a measurement is made, it takes a lot of time to compute the magnitude
Therefore, SI is most commonly used.

Types of Instruments
Depending upon the way the instruments present the results of measurements, they are classified into two broad categories:

Deflection Type (DT)


Value of the measurand will be inferred from deflection or mechanical displacement at the point of balance
Opposing effect = cause producing the deflection Example: PMMC

Null Type (NT)


A zero indication leads to the determination of magnitude of measurand
Attempt to maintain the deflection at zero by suitable application of an affect opposing that generated by the measurand Example: DC Potentiometer

Comparison between Deflection and Null Type


Accuracy is higher for NT
Because the opposing effect is calibrated with the help of standards which pp g p have high degree of accuracy Whereas for DT, calibration depends upon the instrument constant which are normally not known to a high degree of accuracy

Measurand is balanced out for NT


Because the detector have to cover a small range around the balance point and therefore can be made highly sensitive Whereas for DT, it has to be large in size, more rugged and less sensitive

Dynamic measurement
NT is not suitable because it require many manipulation before balance DT is suitable because it can follow the rapid variations of the measurand

Characteristic of Instrument & Measurement System


Static (measurand are either constant or vary slowly with time) and Dynamic (measurand varies rapidly) Static Characteristic
Accuracy Sensitivity Reproducibility Drift Static error Dead zone

True Value
Defined as the average of an infinite number of measured value when the average deviation due to the various factors tend to zero.

Scale Range
Variation between the largest and the smallest reading (or largest one)

Scale Span
Difference between the largest and the smallest reading

Frequency Range
F Frequencies over which measurements can be performed with a i hi h t b f d ith specified degree of accuracy

Static Error
Difference between the measured and true vale

Static Correction
Difference between true and measured value

Drift
Perfect reproducibility means no drift i.e., with a given input, the values do not vary with time Zero Drift
If the whole calibration gradually shift due to the slippage, permanent set, or due to the undue warming up of the electronic circuit. Can be prevented by zero setting

Span Drift or Sensitive Drift


Proportional change in the indication all along the upward scale

Zonal Drift
Occurs only over a p y portion of span p

Drift is an undesirable quantity for the industries.

Static Sensitivity y
Ratio of the magnitude of response or output signal to the magnitude of the measurand. When a calibration curve is linear, sensitivity can be defined as the slope of curve
Constant over the entire range

If the curve is not a straight line the sensitivity varies with input. line, input

Dead Time
Time required by a measurement system to begin to respond to a change in the measurand.
Time before the instrument begins to respond after the measurand has been changed

Dead Zone
Largest change of input for which there is no output of the instrument

Resolution
The smallest increment in the input which can be detected with certainty by an instrument
So, the resolution defines the smallest measurable input change While, the threshold defines the smallest measured input.

Loading Effect
The original signal should not be d sto ted by introduction of any e o g a s g a s ou d ot distorted t oduct o o a y element in the measurement system
However, practically it is not possible.

This distortion may take the form of attenuation, waveform distortion, phase shift, etc.