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STRAIN GAUGE

Strain Gauges

Strain gauge - The main tool in sensing force.

Strain gauges, measure strain

Strain can be related to stress, force, torque and

a host of other stimuli including displacement, acceleration or position.

At the heart of all strain gauges is the change in

resistance of materials due to change in their length due to strain.

Force sensors - Strain

Gauges

Definition of strain: consider a length of metallic wire L, of conductivity and cross-sectional area A.

The resistance of the wire is:

R =
L
A

Taking the log on both sides:

log R= log

1

+ log L a = log+ log

L
A

Force sensors - Strain

Gauges

Taking the differential on both sides:

 dR =  d + d(L/A) L/A R 

Change in resistance is due to two terms:

Due to change in conductivity Due to the deformation of the conductor.

For small deformations (linear deformation), both terms on the

right hand side are linear functions of strain, . Bundling both effects together (that is, the change in conductivity and deformation) we can write:

Force sensors - Strain

Gauges

For small deformations (linear deformation), both terms on the right hand side are linear functions of strain, .

Bundling both effects together (that is, the change in

conductivity and deformation) we can write:

dR

R

= S s

S s is the sensitivity of the strain gauge Also known as the gauge factor

Strain Gauge

For any given strain gauge the gauge factor is a constant

Ranges between 2 to 6 for most metallic strain

gauges

From 40-200 for semiconductor strain gauges.

The strain gauge relation gives a simple linear

relation between the change in resistance of the sensor and the strain applied to it.

Stress and Strain

Strain and Stress

Given the conductor discussed above and applying a force along its axis, the stress is :

=

F

A

=

E dL = E

L

= stress [N/m 2 ] E = Young’s modulus of the material (modulus of elasticity) [N/m 2 ] = dL/L = strain

Strain and Stress

Strain is a normalized linear deformation of the material

Stress is a measure of elasticity of the material.

Strain gauges

Strain gauges come in many forms and types.

Any material, combination of materials or physical configuration that changes its resistance due to strain constitutes a strain gauge.

Will restrict our discussion to two types that

account for most of the strain gauges in use

today:

wire (or metal) strain gauges - resistive

semiconductor strain gauges.

Metallic strain gauge

In its simplest form:

A length of wire, held between two posts

When a force is applied to them, will deform the

wire causing a change in the wire’s resistance.

This method was used in the past and is valid

It is not very practical (construction, attachment

to system, change in resistance is very small).

Sometimes, multiple lengths of wire were used.

Wire strain gauge

Metallic strain gauge common

form

A more practical strain gauge - resistive

Built out of a thin layer of conducting material

Deposited on an insulating substrate (plastic, ceramic, etc.)

Etched to form a long, meandering wire (figure)

Constantan (60% copper, 40% nickel) is most common

material

negligible temperature coefficient of resistance (TCR).

Other materials are commonly used (table)

The resistive strain gauge

Materials for resistive

strain gauges

T a b l e 6.1 . Ma t e ri a l s f or res i s t i ve s t r a i n ga u ge s a n d t h e i r p r o p e rti e s.

 Material Gage factor Constantan (Cu60 Ni40) 2.0 Nichrome (Ni80Cr20) 2.0 Mangan ine 2.2 (Cu84Mn12 Ni 4) Nicke l -12 Chromel (Ni65Fe25Cr10) 2.5 Platinum 5.1 Elinvar 3.8 (Fe55Ni36Cr8Mn0 .5) Platinum-Iridium 6.0 (Pt80Ir20) Platinum Rhodium 4.8 (Pt90Rh10) Bismuth 22

0.43

Maximu m

temperatr ure

[C]

400

 Resistivity Ther mal Expans ion [mm 2 /m] coeff. of coeff . expansion [10  /K] [10  /K] 0.48 5 12.5
 1.3 100 18 10 17 0.11 6000 12 0.9 300 15 0.1 2450 8.9 0.84 300 9 0.36 1700 8.9 0.23 1500 8.9 1.19 300 13.4

1000

800

1300

1300

Metallic strain gauge common

form

Strain gauges may also be used to measure multiple axis strains by simply using more than one gauge or by producing them in standard configurations.

Two-axis strain gauge

120 degree rosette

45 degree rosette

45 degree stacked rosette

membrane rosette

Semiconductor strain gauges

Operate like resistive strain gauges

Construction and properties are different.

The gauge factor for semiconductors is much higher than for metals.

The change in conductivity due to strain is much larger than in metals.

Are typically smaller than metal types

Often more sensitive to temperature variations (require temperature compensation).

Semiconductor strain gauges

All semiconductor materials exhibit changes in resistance due to strain

The most common material is silicon because of its inert properties and ease of production.

The base material is doped, by diffusion of doping materials (usually boron or arsenide for p

or n type) to obtain a base resistance as needed.

The substrate provides the means of straining the silicon chip and connections are provided by deposition of metal at the ends of the device.

Semiconductor strain gauges

Construction of a semiconductor strain gauge:

Semiconductor strain gauges

Other types of semiconductor strain gauges:

Semiconductor strain gauges

One of the important differences between conductor and semiconductor strain gauges is that semiconductor strain gauges are essentially nonlinear devices with typically a quadratic transfer function:

dR

R

= S 1 + S 1 2

Also: PTC or NTC operation

PTC and NTC operation

Strain gauges - applications

Strain gauge must be made to react to a force.

The strain gauge is attached to the member in which strain is sensed, usually by bonding. Cannot be re-used!

Special bonding agents exist for different applications and types of materials

Usually supplied by the manufacturers of strain gauges or specialized producers.

Strain gauges are often used for bending strain,

twisting (torsional and shear strain) and longitudinal tensioning/deformation (axial strain) of structures (engine shafts, bridge loading,

truck weighing and many many others)

Strain gauges - properties

The properties of strain gauges vary by application

Most metal gauges have a nominal resistance between 100 and 1000, (lower and higher

resistances are available)

Gauge factor between 2-5

Dimensions from less than 3x3 mm to lengths in

excess of 150 mm (almost any size may be fabricated if

necessary).

Rosettes (multiple axis strain gauges) are available with 45, 90 and 120axes as well as diaphragm and other specialized configurations.

Strain gauges - properties

Typical sensitivities are 5m

Deformation is of the order of 2-3m/m.

Much higher strains can be measured with specialized

gauges.

Semiconductor strain gauges

usually smaller than most resistive strain gauges

can be made with higher resistances.

their use is limited to low temperatures

can be much less expensive than metal strain gauges.

often part of another device

Strain gauges - errors

Strain gauges are subject to a variety of errors.

Due to temperatures - resistance, especially in semiconductors, is affected by temperature in the same way as by strain.

In metal gauges, this is usually small (materials with low temperature coefficients of resistance).

In semiconductors, temperature compensation is

sometimes provided on board or a separate sensor may be used for this purpose.

Strain gauges - errors

A third source of error is due to the strain itself, which, over time, tends, to

permanently deform the gauge.

can be eliminated by periodic re-calibration

can be reduced by ensuring that the maximum deformation allowed is small and below the recommended for the device.

Strain gauges - errors

Due the bonding process

Thinning of materials due to cycling.

Most strain gauges are rated for:

given number of cycles (i.e. 10 6 or 10 7 cycles),

maximum strain (3% is typical for conducting strain

gauges, 1% for semiconductor strain gauges)

temperature characteristics specified for use with a particular material (aluminum, stainless steel, carbon steel) for optimal performance when bonded

Typical accuracies are of the order of 0.2-0.5%.

Typical resistive strain

gauges

Other Strain Gauges

Other strain gauges - for specialized applications.

Optical fiber strain gauges.

The change in length of the fiber due to strain changes the phase of the light through the fiber.

Measuring the light phase, either directly or in an interferrometric method can produce readings of

minute strain that cannot be obtained in other strain

gauges.

The device and the electronics necessary is far more complicated than standard gauges.

Other Strain Gauges

There are also liquid strain gauges which rely in the resistance of an electrolytic liquid in a flexible container which can be deformed.

Another type of strain gauge that is used on a limited

basis is the plastic strain gauge.

These are made as ribbons or threads based on graphite or carbon in a resin as a substrate and used in a way

similar to other strain gauges.

Very high gauge factors (up to about 300), they are otherwise difficult to use and inaccurate as well as unstable mechanically, severely limiting their practical use.

Bridge Circuits

Cantilever

Force and tactile sensors

Forces can be measured in many ways

The simplest - use a strain gauge

Calibrate the output in units of force.

Other methods include

measuring acceleration of a mass (F=ma),

measuring the displacement of a spring under action

of force (x=kF, k is the spring constant),

measuring the pressure produced by force and some variations of these basic methods.

None of these is a direct measure of force

most are more complicated than use of a strain gauge.

Force and tactile sensors

One measures the tensile force by measuring the strain in the strain gauge.

The sensor is usually provided with attachment holes

may also be used in compressive mode by pre-stressing the strain gauge.

This type of sensor is often used to measure forces in locations such as machine tools, engine mounts and the like.

Often it is called a load cell, especially when large forces are measured.

Force sensor

Force sensor

PIEZOELECTRIC

Acoustic waves

Sound waves are longitudinal elastic waves.

The pressure wave as it propagates, changes the pressure along the direction of its propagation.

Example: acoustic waves, impinging on our eardrums will push or pull on the eardrum to affect hearing.

Any wave, including acoustic waves have three

fundamental properties:

Frequency, wavelength and speed of propagation

Acoustic waves

The frequency, f, of a wave is the number of variations of the wave per second.

Normally defined for harmonic waves and is understood to be the number of cycles of the harmonic (sinusoidal for example) wave.

For example, if we were to count the number of

crests in an ocean wave passing through a fixed

point in one second, the result would be the frequency of the wave.

Acoustic waves

Wavelength, l is the distance a wave propagates in one cycle.

In the example of the ocean wave the wavelength is the distance between two crests (or two valleys)

Velocity, c, of the wave is the speed with which

the front of the wave propagates and, as

indicated above, is frequency dependent.

These three quantities are related as: l = c/f

Concept of wavelength

Acoustic waves

Waves can be transverse waves, longitudinal waves or a combination of the two.

Transverse waves are those waves which cause a change in amplitude in directions transverse to the direction of propagation of the wave.

Example: a tight string vibrates perpendicular to

the length of the string. The wave itself

propagates along the string.

The wave propagates away from the source, in all directions.

Transverse waves on a tight

string

Acoustic waves

Generation of longitudinal waves:

Example: piston in a tube

Example: diaphragm in air

Effect: changes in volume

cause changes in pressure.

These propagate - give

rise to the wave.

Acoustic waves - speed

The speed of an acoustic wave is directly related to the change in volume and the resulting change in pressure

pV
c =
m/s
V 0

0 is the density of the undisturbed fluid, V is the change in volume,

p is the change in pressure V is the volume

Acoustic waves - speed

In gasses, this simplifies to the following

p 0
c
=
m/s
0

0 is the density of the undisturbed fluid,

is the ratio of specific heats for the gas,

p 0 is the undisturbed gas pressure

Thus, the speed of acoustic waves is material, pressure and

temperature dependent

Speed of sound

 Table 6.1. Speed of sound in some materials at given temperatures. Material Speed [m/s] Temperature [C] Air 331 20 Fresh water 1,486 20 Sea water 1,520 20 Granite 6,000 Steel 5,200 20 Copper 3,600 20 Aluminum 6,320 Beryllium 12,900

Acoustic waves - theory

Assuming a harmonic longitudinal wave of frequency f, it may be written in general terms as:

p = P0sin(kxt)

p is pressure in the medium,

P 0 the pressure amplitude of the wave

k is a constant.

The wave propagates in the x direction

f is the angular frequency

Acoustic waves - theory

The amplitude of the wave is:

P 0 = k0 c 2 y m

y m is the maximum displacement of a particle during compression or expansion in the wave. The constant k is called the wave number or the phase constant and is given as:

k = 2
= 
l
c

Acoustic waves - theory

Waves carry energy.

A shockwave (earthquake) can cause damage

A loud sound can hurt our ears.

A wave is said to be a propagating wave if it carries energy from one point to another.

The wave can propagate in an unbounded

medium with or without attenuation (losses).

Attenuation of a wave depends on the medium

Attenuation reduces the amplitude of the wave.

Attenuation of waves is exponential

Acoustic waves - theory

Attenuation constant is defined for each material

The amplitude of the wave, as it propagates,

changes as follows

p = P 0 e x sin(kxt)

Attenuation causes loss of energy as the wave propagates

Dissipates energy of the wave

Acoustic waves - theory

When a propagating wave encounters a

discontinuity in the unbounded space (an object such as a wall, a change in air pressure, etc) part of the wave is reflected and part of it is transmitted into the discontinuity.

Reflection and a transmission occur at any discontinuity

These reflected and transmitted waves may

propagate in directions other than the original

wave.

Transmission causes refraction of the wave.

Reflection, transmission and

refraction

Acoustic waves - theory

The reflected wave is reflected at an angle equal to the angle of incidence (r =i )

The transmitted wave propagates in the material at an angle t which is equal to:

sint = c 2 sini

c

1

c 2 is the speed of propagation of the wave in the medium into which the wave transmits c 1 the speed in the medium from which the wave originates

Acoustic waves - theory

The reflected waves propagate in the same medium as the propagating wave

Interfere with the propagating wave.

interference) or subtract (destructive interference).

The net effect is that the total wave can have

amplitudes smaller or larger than the original

wave.

This phenomenon leads to the idea of a standing wave.

Acoustic waves - theory

Interference will cause some locations in space to have lower amplitudes (or zero) while others will have amplitudes larger than the incident wave.

This is called a standing wave because the locations of

zero amplitudes (called nodes) are fixed in space as are the locations of maxima.

Figure 7.5 shows this and also the fact that the nodes of

the standing wave are at distances of l/2 while maxima

occur atel/4 on either side of a node.

Standing waves

Standing waves

Example of standing waves:

vibrating tight strings

reflections occur at the locations the strings are attached.

This vibration at various wavelengths, and its interaction with the air

around accounts for the

music we perceive when a violin plays.

Acoustic waves - theory

Scattering is reflection of the waves in all directions due to anything in the path of the waves.

Dispersion is the propagation of various

frequency components are different frequency causing distortion in the received sound wave.

Wave impedance or acoustic impedance is the

product of density and velocity:

Z = 0 c

The piezoelectric effect

Piezoelectric effect is the generation of electric charge in crystalline materials upon application of mechanical stress.

The opposite effect is equally useful: application of charge across the crystal causes mechanical deformation in the material.

The piezoelectric effect occurs naturally in materials such as quartz ( SiO 2 - a silicon oxide)

Has been used for many decades in so called crystal oscillators.

The piezoelectric effect

It is also a property of some ceramics and polymers

The piezoelectric effect has been known since 1880

First used in 1917 to detect and generate sound waves in

water for the purpose of detecting submarines (sonar).

The piezoelectric effect can be explained in a simple model by deformation of crystals:

The piezoelectric effect

Deformation in one direction (B) displaces the molecular structure so that a net charge occurs as shown (in Quartz crystal - SiO 2 )

Deformation in a perpendicular axis (B) forms an opposite polarity charge

The piezoelectric effect

The charges can be collected on electrodes deposited on the crystal

Measurement of the charge is then a measure of

the displacement or deformation.

The model uses the quartz crystal (SiO 2 ) but other materials behave in a similar manner.

Also, the behavior of the crystal depends on how

the crystal is cut and different cuts are used for different applications.

The piezoelectric effect -

theory

The polarization vector in a medium (polarization is the electric dipole moment of atoms per unit volume of the material) is related to stress through the following simple relation

C
P = d
m
2

d is the piezoelectric constant, the stress in the material.

The piezoelectric effect -

theory

Polarization is direction dependent in the crystal and may be written as:

P= Pxx + Pyy + Pzz

x, y, z are the standard axes in the crystal.

The relation above now becomes.

Pxx = d11xx + d12yy + d13zz

Pyy = d21xx + d22yy + d23zz

Pzz = d31xx + d32yy + d33zz

d ij are the piezoelectric coefficients along the orthogonal

axes of the crystal.

The piezoelectric effect -

theory

The coefficient depends on how the crystal is cut.

To simplify discussion we will assume that d is single valued

The inverse effect is written as:

e = gP

e is strain (dimensionless), g is called the constant coefficient (is permittivity)

g = d

 ij

or: g ij = d ij

The piezoelectric effect -

theory

The piezoelectric coefficients are related to the electrical anisotropy of materials (permittivity).

A third coefficient is called the electromechanical coupling coefficient and is a measure of the efficiency of the electromechanical conversion:

k 2 = dgE

or: k ij 2 = d ij g ij E ij

E is the Young modulus.

The electromechanical coupling coefficient is simply the

ratio between the electric and mechanical energies per unit volume in the material.

Crystals - piezoelectric properties

Tabl e 7.2. Piezoelectric coefficients and othe r propertiesin monocrystals

Crystal

Piezoelectric

coeffi cient d ij , x10 

[C/N]

Permittivity, ij

Coup l ing coefficient

k max

Qua rtz (SiO 2 )

ZnS

CdS

ZnO

KDP (KH2PO4)

BaTiO3

LiNbO3

LiTaO3

 d11=2.31, d14=0.7 11=4.5, 33=4.63 0.1 d14=3.18 11=8.37 0.1 d15=-14, d33=10.3, 11=9.35, 33=10.3 0.2 d31=-5.2 d15=-12, d33=12, 11=8.2 0.3 d31=-4.7 d14=1.3, d36=21 11=42, 33=21 0.07 d14=-1.5, d36=48 11=56, 33=15.4 0.1 d15=400, d33=100, 11=3000, 33=180 0.6 d31=-35 d31=-1.3, d33=18, 11=84, 33=29 0.68 d22=20, d15=70 d31=-3, d33=7, 11=53, 33=44 0.47

d22=7.5, d15=26

Ceramics - piezoelectric properties

Table 7.3. Piezoelectric coefficients and othe r properties in cerami cs

Ceramic

Piezoelectric coefficient

d ij , x10 [C/N]

Permittivity,

Coupling

coeffi cient

k max

BaTiO3 (at 120C)

BaTiO3+5%CaTiO3

(at 105C)

Pb(Zr 0.53Ti0.47)O3+(0.5-3)%La2O2

or Bi2O2 or Ta2O5 (at 290C)

(Pb0.6Ba0.4)Nb2O6

(at 300C)

(K0.5Na0.5)NbO3 (at 240C)

d15=260, d31=-45,

d33=-100

d31=43, d33=77

d15=380, d31=119,

d33=282

d31=67, d33=167

d31=49, d33=160



0.2









0.25

0.47

0.28

0.45

Polymers - piezoelectric properties

Table 7.4. Piezoelectric coefficients and othe r properties in polymers

Polymer

PVDF

Copolymer

Piezoelectric coefficient

d ij , x10 [C/N]

Permittivity,

Coupling

coefficient

k max

d31=23, d33=-33

d31=11, d33=-38



0.14



0.28

Piezoelectric devices

A piezoelectric device is built as a simple capacitor, (capacitance C)

Assuming force is applied on the x-axis in this figure, the charge generated by force is: Q x = d 11 F x

Voltage developed across it is:

V

= Q x

= d 11 F x = d 11 F x d

C C

A

d = thickness A = area

Piezoelectric devices

The thicker the device the larger the voltage.

A smaller area has the same effect.

Output is directly proportional to force (or pressure

which is force/area).

Most common piezoelectric materials for sensors

Polymer films such as PVDF (PolyVinyliDeneFluoride).

Barium Titanate (BiTiO3) in crystal or ceramic form

Crystalline quartz are used for some applications.

Thin films of ZnO on semiconductors

Piezoelectric resonator

Equivalent circuit of a piezoelectric material.

This circuit has two resonances a parallel resonance and a series resonance (called

antiresonance)

Piezoelectric resonator

The resonant frequencies are given as:

f s =

1
2 LC

f p =

1

2LC C 0 / C + C 0

A single resonance is desirable

Materials or shapes for which the two resonant frequencies are widely separated are used.

Therefore a capacitance ratio is defined as:

m = C
C 0

Piezoelectric resonator

The relation between the two frequencies is:

fp = fs 1 + m

The larger the ratio m, the larger the separation

between frequencies. The resistance R in the equivalent circuit acts as a

damping (loss) factor. This is associated with the

Quality factor of the piezoelectric material:

Q =

1
L
R
C

Piezoelectric actuators

One of the first actuator has been in use in analog clocks for decades.

Essentially a cantilever beam made of a piezoelectric crystal (quartz is common) that engages a geared wheel.

When a pulse is connected across the beam it

bends (downwards) and moves the wheel one

tooth at a time.

This actuation only requires minute motion.

Its main importance - accuracy

Piezoelectric actuators

Other actuators have been designed which can move much larger distances and apply significant forces as well.

It is 70x90mm in size and when a 600V is applied across

the piezoelectric element (grey patch) one end moves relative to the other (which must be fixed) about 8mm.

The rated force for this device is about 17kg force at rated

voltage.

Some piezoelectric sensors and actuators can operate at lower voltages, large voltages are typical of piezoelectric actuators and is one serious limitation.

Linear piezoelectric

actuator

Stacked piezoelectric

actuators

Individual elements, each with its own electrodes can be stacked to produce stacks of varying lengths.

In such devices, the displacement is anywhere between

0.1 to 0.25% of the stack length, but this is still a small

displacement.

One of the advantages of these stacks is that the forces are even larger.

Stacked piezoelectric

actuator

Saw devices

Surface waves or Rayleigh waves.

Surface waves propagate on the surface of an elastic medium with little effect on the bulk of the medium

Have properties which are significantly different than longitudinal waves

The most striking difference is their much slower

speed of propagation.

Propagation of surface waves is nondispersive

Saw devices

The exact definition of Rayleigh wave is a wave that propagates at the interface between an elastic medium and vacuum or rarefied gas (air for example) with little penetration into the bulk of the medium.

A good analogy for surface waves are ocean waves.

Under most conditions this would seem to be a disadvantage but, looking at the wavelength alone as the

ratio of velocity and frequency: l=c/f,

The lower the velocity of the wave, the shorter the wavelength in that medium.

The smaller the physical size of a device!

SAW devices

Generation of surface waves:

In a thick sample, one can set up a surface wave by a process of wave conversion.

A longitudinal wave device is used and energy coupled through a wedge at an angle to the surface.

At the surface of the medium there will be both a

shear wave and a surface wave

This is an obvious solution but not necessarily the optimal.

Surface waves in a solid

Saw devices

A more efficient method: apply metallic strips on the surface of a piezoelectric material in an interdigital fasion (comblike structure)

This establishes a periodic structure of metallic strips.

When an oscillatory source is connected across the two sets of electrodes, a periodic electric field is established in the piezoelectric material,

Because of this electric field, an equivalent, periodic

stress pattern is established in the piezoelectric medium.

This generates a stress wave (sound wave) that now propagates away from the electrodes in both directions. The generation is most efficient when the period of the surface wave equals the inter-digital period.

SAW generator

SAW devices

For example, a SAW device has a frequency of 400 Mhz.

The speed of propagation in a piezoelectric is of the order of 3000 m/s.

This gives a wavelength of 7.5 m.

Making each strip in the structurel/4 gives 1.875m width for each strip and 1.875m distance between neighboring strips.

This calculation shows that the dimensions required are

very small (the same device, based on electromagnetic waves has a wavelength of 750mm).

SAW devices

The comblike structure generates sound waves in the piezoelectric medium

A sound wave in the piezoelectric medium

produces a signal in a comb-like structure.

The structure can be used both for generation and reception of surface waves which in turn

means that the device can be used for

sensing or actuation

SAW Resonator

By far the most common use of surface acoustic waves (SAW) is in SAW resonators, filters and delay lines.

The portion marked as In and Out are used as the

input and output ports of the resonator (i.e. the outside connections of the resonator).

The parallel lines on each side are grooves etched in the quartz piezoelectric.

SAW Resonator

The input port establishes a surface wave

The wave is reflected by the grooves on each side.

These reflection interfere with each other establishing a resonance which depends on the grating of groves separation.

Only those signals that interfere constructively

will establish a signal in the output port, the others cancel.

SAW Resonator

This device is popular as the element that defines the oscillator frequency in communication

A very small device can easily operate at low frequencies and can operate at frequencies above the limit of conventional oscillators.

The device may also be viewed as a very narrow

band filter and

This is in fact another of its uses.

The basis of most sensors is a delay line

SAW resonators for

communication

SAW delay line

SAW Resonator

The device on the left generates a surface wave

This is detected after a delay in the device on the right.

The delay depends on the distance between the devices and, because the wavelength is usually small, the delay can be long.

Adding an amplifier in the feedback makes this

an oscillator with frequency dependent on the delay.

SAW Resonator

It is based on a delay line in which the delay is influenced by the stimulus.

An essentially identical sensor is shown in Figure 7.46

which has two identical delay lines and the output is

differential.

One line is used as the proper sensor, the second as a reference to cancel common-mode effects such as

temperature.

In most cases, the delay time is not measured but rather, a feedback amplifier is connected (positive feedback) which causes the device to resonate at a frequency established by the time delay

SAW sensor

SAW sensor

SAW Resonator

The stimuli that can be measured are many.

First, the speed of sound is temperature dependent. Temperature changes both the physical length of

the delay line and the sound speed as follows:

L = L0

1 + T T0 ,

c= c0

1 + T T0

is the coefficient of linear expansion the temperature coefficient of sound velocity.

SAW Resonator

These two terms are contradicting in that both increase and hence the delay and oscillator frequency are a function of the difference between them.

The change in frequency with temperature is:

f

f

= T

This is linear and a SAW sensor has a sensitivity of about

10 C.

SAW Resonator

In sensing pressure, the delay in propagation is due to stress in the piezoelectric as indicated above.

Measurement of displacement, force and

acceleration are done by measuring the strain (pressure) produced in the sensor.

Many other stimuli can be measured including

radiation (through the temperature rise), voltage (through the stress it produces through the electric field) and so on.

QCM Sensor

'

C 0

- C 0

C

R

L

1

1

1

Sauerbrey

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Kanazawa - Gordon

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Frequency Response

Impedance

 1000000 100000 10000 Impedance 1000 100 10 1 9950000 9960000 9970000 9980000 9990000 10000000 10010000 10020000 10030000 10040000 10050000 Freqeuncy Impedance Impedance

Frequency Change Response

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Time in s

TSM-Sensor

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Zeit / s

Ultrasonic sensors and

actuators

In principle, identical to acoustic sensors and actuators

Somewhat different in construction

Very different in terms of materials used and range of frequencies.

The ultrasonic range starts where the audible

range ends,

Therefore ultrasonic sensor (i.e. microphone) or actuator for the near ultrasound range should be quite similar to an acoustic sensor or actuator.

24 kHz, UT transmitter and

Ultrasonic sensors and

actuators

Figure 7.31 shows an ultrasonic transmitter (left) and an ultrasonic receiver (right) operating in air at 24 kHz.

Same size and essentially the same construction.

This is typical of piezoelectric devices in which the same

exact device can be used for both purposes

Both use an identical piezoelectric disk

The only difference is in the slight difference in the

construction of the cone.

Figure 7.31 shows a closer view of another device, this time operating at 40 kHz, also designed to operate in air in which the piezoelectric device is square, seen at the

center below the brass supporting member

40 kHz ultrasonic sensor

40 kHz ultrasonic

ranging

Ultrasonic sensors

Scope of ultrasonic sensing is very wide.

Ultrasound is much better suited for use in solids and liquids (higher velocities, lower attenuation)

Support waves other than longitudinal which allow additional flexibility ultrasonics

shear waves,

surface waves

Ultrasonic sensors exist at almost any frequency and exceeding 1 GHz (especially SAW devices).

Most sensors operate below 50 MHz.

Ultrasonic sensors

Most ultrasonic sensors and actuators are based on piezoelectric materials

Some are based on magnetostrictive materials

A particularly important property of piezoelectric

materials that makes them indispensable in ultrasound is their ability to oscillate at a fixed, sharply defined frequency called the resonant frequency.

The resonant frequency of a piezoelectric crystal (or

ceramic element) depends on the material itself, its effective mass, strain and physical dimensions and is also influenced by temperature, pressure and the like.

Ultrasonic resonator

Resonance is important is two ways.

At resonance the amplitude of mechanical distortion is highest

In receive mode, the signal generated is largest

Means the sensor is most efficient at resonance.

The second reason is that the sensors operate at

clear and sharp frequencies

Parameters of propagation including reflections and transmissions are clearly defined as are other properties such as wavelength.

Ultrasonic sensor

The piezoelectric element is rigidly attached to the front of the sensor so that vibrations can be transmitted to and from the sensor.

The lens shown in this case will focus the ultrasound beam to a focal point

Often just a thin flat sheet or the front, metal surface of the sensor

or it may be prismatic, conical or spherical as shown here.

The damping chamber prevents ringing of the device

The impedance matching circuit (not always present, sometimes it is part of the driving supply) matches the source with the piezoelectric element.

Every sensor is specified for a resonant frequency and for environmental operation (solids, fluids, air, harsh environments, etc.)

Ultrasonic sensor -

construction

Ultrasonic sensors - sample

Specification sheet

Pulse-echo operation

All ultrasonic sensors are dual they can transmit or receive.

In many applications, like the example of range

finding above, two sensors are used.

In others they are switched between transmit and receive modes.

This is the most common mode for operation in

medical applications and in testing of materials.

Based on the fact that any discontinuity causes a reflection or causes scattering of the sound waves.

Pulse-echo operation

This reflection is an indication of the existence of the discontinuity

Amplitude of the reflection is a function of the size of the discontinuity.

The exact location of the discontinuity can be found from the time it

takes the waves to propagate to and from the discontinuity.

Figure 7.32 shows an example of finding the location/size of a defect in a piece of metal.

The front and back surfaces are seen, usually as large reflections while the defect is usually smaller.

Its location can be easily detected.

The same idea can be used to create an image of a baby in the womb and for position sensing in industry.

Fault location by ultrasound

Sensing fluid velocity

There are three effects that can be used.

1. Sound velocity is relative to the fluid in which it travels. (Our voice carries downwind faster (by

the wind velocity) than in still air). This speed

difference can be measured from the time it takes the sound to get from one point to another.

2. The second effect is based on the phase

difference caused by this change in speed

3. Third is the doppler effect the frequency of the wave propagating downwind is higher than the

frequency in still air.

Sensing fluid velocity

An example of a fluid speed sensing using method 1. In this case, the distance and angle of the sensors is known and the transmit time, say downstream is:

T =

D

c + v f cos

c speed of sound v f fluid speed

Magnetostrictive sensors

In air or in fluids, piezoelectric sensors are best.

In solids there is an alternative - magnetostriction.

These sensors are collectively called

magnetostrictive ultrasonic sensors

Used at lower frequencies (about 100 kHz) to generate higher intensity waves.

All that is necessary is to attach a coil to the material and drive it at the required frequency.

The field generated in the material generates stress which generates an ultrasonic wave

EMATs

An even simpler method is to generate an ac electromagnetic field inside the material in which sound waves are to be generated.

Because the induced electric currents, there is a force

acting on these currents due to an external magnetic field generated by permanent magnets.

The interaction generates stresses and a sound wave.

These sensors are called electromagnetic acoustic

sensors (EMAT electromagnetic acoustic transducer).

These sensors are quite common because of their

simplicity but they tend to operate at low frequencies

(<100kHz) and have low efficiencies.

Structure of EMATs