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Special Issue 'Intelligent Data Acquisition and Smart Sensors Systems'

Vol.8, February 2010, pp. 26-41





Capacitive Sensing for Contact-less Proximity Detection in Industrial Marble Machines


Sergio Saponara, Fabrizio Iacopetti, Luca Fanucci, Bruno Neri

Dipartimento di Ingegneria dell'Informazione: Elettronica, Informatica, Telecomunicazioni

Universitą di Pisa,

via G. Caruso 16, 56122, Pisa, Italy

E-mail: s.saponara@iet.unipi.it, f.iacopetti@iet.unipi.it, l.fanucci@iet.unipi.it, b.neri@iet.unipi.it



Received: 29 January 2010   /Accepted: 15 February 2010   /Published: 26 February 2010


Abstract: The paper presents the design and experimental characterization of capacitive sensors, plus the relevant front-end acquisition circuitry, for process control in industrial marble machines. The new developed sensing system allows detecting, in real-time and without any contact, the presence of stone samples under the abrasive/cutting heads in an industrial machine. The obtained detection signal is needed as a feedback to improve the automatic control of the polishing/cutting process in marble industry. Different types of sensors are proposed whose performances are assessed through experimental test campaigns considering real industrial working conditions. Compared to state-of-art sensors the proposed solutions allow for a reliable detection while being of low complexity and robust to harsh environment conditions.


Keywords: Capacitive sensors, Industrial measurements, Detectors, Marble industry, Process control, Measurements in dirty/wet environments.


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