Bullet Sensors & Transducers e-Digest, Vol. 69, Issue 7, July 2006: Product News

    (ISSN 1726- 5479)


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Magnetic One-chip Linear Position Sensor/Encoder and Contactless Linear Sensor with Analog and Digital Evaluation


iC-ML is an integrated magnetic linear position sensor / encoder assembled in a space-saving TSSOP20 package (6.6 x 6.4 x 1.1 mm). The circuit contains four Hall sensors for the generation of analog sine/cosine signals at a pole pitch of 2.56 mm; it also has an integrated signal conditioning unit with an A/D converter and output interfaces. Three configuration inputs allow 26 different modes of operation to be selected for the position evaluation of the magnetic tape placed above the chip. Magnetic field strengths from 20 mT upwards are sufficient for safe operation; a suitable gain or error signal can be used to both monitor the distance of the magnet and to center it.


Operating distances of 12 mm between the magnetic tape and package can be achieved, depending on the material and size of the magnet used. In addition to providing pure analog sine and cosine signals for position determination with external interpolators iC-ML also uses these signals to generate output signals with a resolution of 6, 7 and 8 bits, enabling resolutions of 20 m and up to 256 linear steps to be acquired.

The linear displacement of iC-ML with respect to the magnetic tape is provided in analog form as a periodic sawtooth and triangle voltage, where the amplitudes are freely selectable. Digital signals are available as A/B quadrature signals with a zero pulse Z and as up/down pulses used to trigger counters. Additional power reduction modes permit the halving of the supply current. Speeds of up to 5 m/s can be processed.


It is possible to cascade several iC - ML devices at once, allowing various coordinates to be scanned; here the chips are activated one after the other in a chain and the position signals output via a 4-wire bus. This simplifies the connecting up of the device to a microcontroller or interpolator for further processing. Deactivated chips with high-impedance bus connections have a very low standby current draw.


Possible areas of application for iC-ML include analog/digital incremental linear scales, contactless sliding switches / linear potentiometers, level sensors, commutation of linear motors and linear sensors in various industrial applications within a temperature range of -40 to 125 C.

iC-MLs non-contact sensor principle and generous distance tolerance make it particularly suitable for applications where the hermetic separation of the electronics and the mechanical drive is advantageous, such as those used in wet and dusty mechanical engineering environments, for example.

iC-ML linear position sensor





Dr David Lin

iC-Haus GmbH,

Am Kuemmerling 18, D-55294 Bodenheim

Tel: +49 - (0)6135 - 9292-300, fax: +49 - (0)6135 - 9292-192

E-mail: sales@ichaus.com



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