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Compact and robust sensors for proximity detection

14 May 2010

A range of displacement measurement sensors that combines the robustness and proven measurement performance of eddy current sensor technology with the latest printed coil and permanent magnet technology is now available in the UK from Micro-Epsilon. The new mainSENSORs family of magneto-inductive displacement sensors not only benefits from having an extremely compact design relative to its measuring range, but also offers OEMs an attractive price-performance ratio for mid-to-high volume applications.

The principle of the sensor is based on a coil, which is supplied with alternating current, resulting in a primary magnetic field. According to the Maxwell formula, this magnetic field induces eddy currents in the electrically conductive material arranged opposite the coil. In the field of the eddy current sensor is a special film, which attenuates the eddy current sensor depending on the strength of the magnetic field. Using this method, a linear relationship between the distance to the magnet and the output signal can be established. As printed coils can be used inside the sensor, manufacturing does not rely on any semiconductor processes.

The first standard industrial sensor in the mainSENSORs family is the MDS-40 M30, which has a 40mm measuring range and an M30 cylindrical, barrel-type stainless steel housing. The alternative to this is the OEM version, the MDS-40MK, a miniature flat rectangular PCB version with a plastic housing and a 40mm measuring range.

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