Signal Conditioning For Accurate Sensor Measurement

Proper signal conditioning is critical to any industrial data acquisition or industrial control application. Many sensors do not provide a clean and clear signal due to various reasons such as electrical or RF noise, or wire loss. For example, a thermocouple operating in an environment with large electric motors will pick up electrical noise which affects the signal such that sensing and acquiring a valid temperature from the raw signal can be impossible. Such signals require signal conditioning before being captured and processed by a data acquisition device.

Dycor-Signal-Conditioning-Block-Diagram

Signal conditioning includes many different processes, but some of the most common are amplification, isolation, filtering, excitation and linearization. In addition, cold-junction compensation is critical for accurate thermocouple measurements. A few examples of signals that may require a signal conditioner include: thermocouples, thermistors, RTD’s, mag pickups and other proximity probes, LVDT, and strain gauges.

A signal conditioner can also perform the functions of a signal converter by converting a raw signal from analog to a different form of analog or from analog to a digital signal. Common examples include the conversion of a thermocouple signal to a 4-20mA signal (analog) or to a form of field bus (digital).

Dycor's Signal Conditioning Modules

Dycor provides a number of modules to meet industrial signal conditioning requirements.

SmartFilter TC™ Thermocouple Transmitter (Single Channel)

This module provides up to 4,500 VAC isolation, communicates via Modbus over RS-485, and has many high-end features to capture and convert your thermocouple sensor readings.

SmartFilter TC™ Multichannel Thermocouple Signal Conditioner

We designed this multichannel module to work with the dataTaker® DT80X series data logger and CEM20 channel expander, and it supports up to 32 channels of isolation.

Magnetic Pickup Signal Conditioner

This signal conditioner is able to process 4 channels of any magnetic pickup sensor with one module.

We also sell Validyne and MESCON signal conditioners for a variety of sensor types. In addition, all dataTaker® loggers have significant signal conditioning capability built-in. Give us a call, and one of our technical sales staff will assist you in finding the right solution for your project.