Smart Sensors Systems Design
(Marie Curie Chairs Excellence (EXC) project MEXT-CT-2005-023991 SMARTSES)
Project duration: 3 years (2006-2009)
Funded: within the FP6 programme Marie Curie Actions: Human Resources and Mobility (HRM) Activity (Marie Curie Chairs Excellence (EXC))
Staff: 1 person (Marie Curie Chairs Excellence (EXC) grant holder)
Principal Investigator: Prof. Sergey Y. Yurish
Results: 5 patents, 16 articles in peer reviewed international journals, 24 conferences papers, 2 book chapters, 1 book, 2 best articles awards, 1 best paper award, 2 keynote presentations
Keywords: smart sensors systems, smart sensors, intelligent sensors, digital sensors, data acquisition systems, frequency-to-digital converters, universal sensors and transducers interfaces, UFDC, USTI
Future collaboration: joint projects within the FP7 programmes
Collaboration sought: information exchange/training, further research or/and teaching career development for Marie Curie Chairs Excelence (EXC) grant holder in European university or company at the end of project (CV on request ).
The Next Generation of Smart Sensors Technology is Ready, Interview for The Mag, January-March 2010, pp.4-5.Universitat Politectica de Catalunya (UPC Barcelona), (Download: 1.2 Mb)
Prof. Sergey Y. Yurish
Centro de Diseño d’Equipos Industriales (CDEI-UPC)
Parc Tecnologic de Barcelona, Edifici U
C/ Llorens Artigues 4-6, planta 0
08028 Barcelona, Spain
Tel: +34 696067716, fax: +34 93 6641970
General Overview. The Smart Sensors Systems Design (SMARTSES) project is based on the multidisciplinary research, which is focused on programmable parameter-to-frequency (time) converters as a digital sensor and smart sensors system core and structural-algorithmic methods for data extraction in order to move from a traditional analogue signal domain to frequency-time signal domain (frequency, period, duty-cycle, pulse-modulated, time interval, phase-shift, etc.). Working in the frequency-time domain simplifies design, and obviates some technical and technological problems, thanks to the properties of frequency as informative parameter. The proposed design approach compatible with system-on-chip (SoC) implementation and can overcoming current hurdles to truly widespread deployment of smart sensors and systems. The advanced methods for signal processing and conversion to be developed will become the basis for self-adaptive smart sensors and systems with programmable accuracy and non-redundant measuring time, applicable to all kind of modulating sensors (resistive, capacitive, inductive), resonant sensors and oscillator-based sensors.
The project is focused on the promotion and recognition of excellence in European Research, thereby increasing its visibility and attractiveness in the new, emerging and multidisciplinary area of research devoted to smart sensor systems and systems-on-chip. A novel design approach has been used (for the first time in the World), which includes both technological and structural-algorithmic methods to improve system performance.
To target at a cost-driven European industrial market, a low-cost high-performance highly flexible universal frequency-to-digital converters for different frequency-time parameters and direct sensor interfacing circuits for resistive, capacitive, inductive and resistive bridges sensing elements will be developed. It could be used for any frequency-time domain signal, the same as a standard analogue-to-digital converter (ADC) is used in the analogue signal domain. Sensors manufacturers will be able to simply integrate such submodules in microsystems, digital sensors or system-on-chip in order to produce a serial output or bus capability. Extension of IEEE 1451 standards family for frequency-time signal domain sensors is proposed.
The joint of two important inventions (program-oriented conversion methods and direct sensors interfacing in the frame of project devoted to smart sensor systems and systems-on-chip will benefit the European community and give its science more international recognition in the world in this emerging area.
The project also included teaching activities. In frame of the project a new course on Smart Sensors Systems Design has been created and given in the host university - Universitat Politecnica de Cataluniya (UPC Barcelona), Spain in 2007, 2008 and 2009. The course is based on Problem (Project) Based Learning (PBL) approach. Taking into account that PBL gives students an opportunity to be involved in a small project in the area of smart sensor systems, they will have a possibility of working autonomously with a high responsibility, using an active knowledge acquisition tool in this emerging field and obtain, at the end, real results thanks to this training-through-research approach. The course is suitable for engineers, graduate, Ph.D. and M.Sc. students. The online course version (slides) is available <here>.
Objectives. The main scientific and technological objectives of the proposed multidisciplinary research project was to develop a new design methodology for different smart sensors systems and systems-on-chip based on advanced frequency (time)-to-digital converters as its embedded core, made on the basis of novel conversion methods; to research, simulate and create different smart sensors and systems including self-adaptive and direct interfacing circuits for oscillator-based and modulating sensors. This modern approach for smart sensor systems creation will be based on both modern technologies and advanced methods for signal processing and conversion. The most effective method to achieve this purpose will be a combination of technological and structural-algorithmic methods. The proposed research focuses on a completely novel generation of form of frequency (time)-to-digital conversion with a constant programmable error of up to 0.001-0.0001 % along the entire frequency range and non-redundant conversion time.
A novel method for error estimation and uncertainty calculation for the designed frequency (time)-to-digital converters and overall systems will be used in the project. It based on the Lyapunov’s characteristic functions and piece-wise linear approximation of probability distribution (frequency function) and allows us to take into account the particular distribution laws for error components of the total error. Usually, this method improves the accuracy of the determined numerical characteristics of the overall error by up to 10 - 11 % and obtains the resulting probability distribution.
Brief Summary. The results obtained during the project have an exceptional importance for industry because of at the first time, new measurement technologies and electronics components – novel integrated circuits of high precision, 2-channel Universal Sensors and Transducers Interface (USTI), which has not any analogs in the World - are ready for technology transfer to industry.
The USTI is intending for any frequency, period, duty-cycle, phase-shift and pulse width modulated output sensors and transducers. It has 3 popular interfaces: RS232, SPI and I2C. Taking into account that a frequency (period) as informative parameter of sensor’s output signal has much more advantages in comparison with traditional analog sensor’s output signals, it means the beginning of revolution reorientation from analog signal domain to frequency-time signal domain in metrology. Speaking about digital sensors design, frequency output sensing elements are more suitable for digital sensors design then traditional analog sensing elements.
The USTI is based on 4 patented methods for frequency (period), its ratio, duty-cycle and phase-shift measurements. It has 26 measuring and one generated (10 MHz) modes; programmable relative error from 1 to 0.0005 %, broad frequency range from 0.05 Hz to 9 MHz (144 MHz), scalable resolution and non-redundant conversion time.
The USTI available in 28-laed PDIP, 32-lead TQFP and 32-pad MLF (5x5x1 mm) and can be embedded into any desktop, hand-held or pen-size measuring instruments or miniature sensors package.
Applications. Due to high metrological performances and wide functionality the USTI has numerous applications:
Each of the possible applications can reap a great benefit for appropriate industry sectors in Europe in the whole, thus improving their market position in the world. Smart sensors and systems are strongly relevant to European interests. According to analytics from the Global Industry Analysts Inc., Europe represents the largest and fastest growing smart sensors market and is projected to reach US$ 2.1 billion by 2010, while the global smart sensors market will reach US$ 7.8 billion by 2015.
During the project, the IEEE 1451 standard extension for frequency-time domain sensors and transducers has been proposed. The European analog of IEEE 1451 standard should include such extension. This will be one of the main European contributions into the standardization process.
Further steps should include creation of distance learning courses, remote laboratory based on USTI and project-based e-learning course at the Universitat Oberta de Catalunya (UOC, Barcelona, Spain).
Scientific Highlights. Based on the detailed review of existing smart sensors, sensors with frequency, period, duty-cycle, pulse-width modulated, phase-shift and pulse number output (so-called quasi-digital sensors), integrated converters and measuring methods for frequency-time parameters of signals, 5 novel methods for frequency-time measurements where patented (national patents granted at fist, before apply for European patents):
Novel modified method of the dependent count (MDC) for frequency (period) measurements with reduced speed of measurement was proposed and investigated. The method can be used for measurement in wide ranges of frequency and periods of input signal with constant quantization error in all frequency range, non-redundant time of measurement, scalable resolution and a possibility to measure a frequency that is exceeded the reference frequency without additional hardware and time. Due to the non-redundant time of measurement, the MDC opens a wide perspectives for self-adaptive frequency (period) measurements in which it is possible to change accuracy on speed and vice versa according to a measuring algorithm and conditions.
Cores for smart sensors systems – a universal frequency-to-digital converter (UFDC-2) and universal sensors and transducers interface (USTI) ICs – based on 4 mentioned patented methods were designed and investigated in order to determine all metrological performances and its limits. Experiments have determined possible ranges and accuracy for each of measurand: frequency, period, duty-cycle, duty-off factor, phase shift, time interval between start- and stop-pulse, frequency (period) difference, frequency (period) ratio, rotation speed, pulse width and space, frequency absolute and relative deviation, event counting. The 2-channel ICs can work in 26 measuring modes, one generating mode and have a wide frequency range: 0.05 Hz up to 9 MHz (144 MHz with prescaling). Error analysis including (quantization, reference and software related errors) for each of method was done. The range of programmable relative error is from 1 to 0.0005 %. In addition, the USTI can directly converts capacitance, resistance and resistive bridges parameters into digital according to 3 interfaces: RS-232, SPI and I2C.
Based on a feedback form European customers (for example, industrial and scientific company ATIPIC, Barcelona, Spain; and Instituto de Telecomunicaçõnes, Lisbon, Portugal), a high-speed version of the UFDC-1M-16 and custom designed version of UFDC-1 and UFDC-1M-16 with 120 s communication master mode delay were also developed. The high-speed IC UFDC-1M-16 has a non-redundant conversion time from 6.25 ms to 6.25 ms at 1 to 0.001 % constant relative errors respectively in a wide frequency range. At the fist time, the conversion rate for a completely novel generation of frequency-to-digital converter has become comparable with the speed of successive-approximation and S-D analog-to-digital converter.
A unified design methodology for converters based on patented methods and specifications for a new generation of integrated converters that will include both technological and structural-algorithmic approaches for metrological performance improving was also developed. An advanced self-calibration technique working in a wide temperature range was proposed, investigated and used at the ICs design. Different self-adaptive smart sensors and systems based on advanced programmable frequency (time)-to-digital converters, sensors and transducers interfaces and various sensing elements have been designed:
One more important achievement made during the project is an extension of IEEE 1451 Smart Transducers Interface Standard to quasi-digital sensors. It has becomes possible because of the UFDC-2 and USTI covers three main functions of smart transducers: high accurate frequency (time)-to-digital conversion, communication and storage an IEEE 1451’s Transducer Electronic Data Sheet (TEDS) in its flash memory with the aim to simple sensors and transducers configuration in a system and ability of self-identification and self-adaptation. The last one feature includes a possibility for flexible change accuracy for speed and opposite during each of measurement. At the fist time, the TEDS example for smart frequency output sensors and transducers were proposed and composed. Together with appropriate transducers’ parameters, the TEDS for frequency output sensors also contains the quantization error of frequency-to-digital conversion. This parameter can be changed during measurements depend on applications and adaptive measuring algorithms.
Nevertheless that the IEEE 1451 family of standards is developing in the USA by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Instrumentation and Measurement Society’s Technical Committee on Sensors Technology, after its approval process and acceptance by industry, the European analog for the IEEE 1451 standard will be also worked out. Due to current research and development in the frame of SMARTSES project, the European standard initiative supported by the IFSA will have a great benefit with such essential contribution into this standardization process. Such initiative will expand a cost-driven European smart sensors market up to 20 % due to involving different frequency-time domain sensors, which were not covered by the IEEE 1451 before, and promote of excellence in European research, thereby increasing its visibility and attractiveness in the new, emerging and multidisciplinary area of research devoted to plug-and-play sensors and transducers.
The extension of IEEE 1451 standards family for quasi-digital sensors provides smart transducers European manufactures with the ability to produce quickly and with low-cost different IEEE 1451 compatible sensors, transducers, measuring and data acquisition systems.
Publications and Patents
Articles and Papers 2006/2007
. Yurish S. Y., Analysis of Quantization Error for Methods of Measurements of Duty-cycle and Duty-off Factor, Automatic, Measurement and Control, State University Lviv Polytechnic, No.551, 2006, pp.128-135.
. Yurish S. Y., Automated Calibration of Universal Precision Frequency-to-Digital Converter, Measuring Technique and Metrology, Transaction of State University Lviv Polytechnic, No.66, 2006, pp. 153-160.
. Yurish S.Y. Sensors and MEMS: Market Analysis and Trends in the Discrete Manufacturing Industry, Manufacturing Automation, March/April 2006, pp.16-17.
. Yurish S. Y., Kirianaki N. V., Automated Calibration Technique for Programmable Universal Frequency-to-Digital Converter, in Proc. of IFAC Workshop on Programmable Devices and Embedded Systems (PDeS’2006), Czech Republic, Brno, 14-16 February 2006, pp.72-77 (Download: 284 Kb).
. Yurish S. Y. Educational and Eurotraining Curriculum in Data Acquisition and Signal Processing for Smart Sensors, Microelectronics Education, Lausanne, Switzerland, Ed. by A. M. Ionescu, M. Declercq, M. Kayal, Y. Leblebici, Springer, 2006, pp. 197-201. (See details).
. Yurish S. Y., Kirianaki N. V., Interface Circuit Design for Frequency-Time Domain MEMS Sensors, in Proc. of International MEMS Conference, 9-12 May 2006, Singapore, Journal of Physics: Conference Series, Vol. 34, 2006. (Download: 80 Kb).
. Yurish S. Y., Kirianaki N. V., Resolution Analysis of Modern Methods for Frequency and Period Measurements, in Proc. of IMEKO XVIII World Congress, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, September 17 - 22, 2006 (Download: 164 Kb).
. Yurish S. Y.,
Extension of IEEE 1451 Standard to Quasi-Digital
Sensors, in Proc. of the IEEE
Sensors Applications Symposium 2007
.Yurish S. Y. Smart Universal Sensor and Transducer Interface, in Proceedings of the SENSOR+TEST Conference 2007, Nurnberg, Germany, 22-24 May 2007, Vol.1, pp. 307-312.
.Yurish S. Y., High-Speed Universal Frequency-to-Digital Converter for Quasi-Digital Sensors and Transducers, Sensors & Transducers, Vol. 80, Issue 6, June 2007, pp. 1225-1229. (Download: 479 Kb).
Articles and Papers 2007/2008
. Yurish S. Y., Advanced Analog-to-Digital Conversion Using Voltage-to-Frequency Converters for Remote Sensors, Key Engineering Materials: Measurement Technology and Intelligent Instruments VIII, Vol. 381 – 382, 2008, pp.623-626 (Download: )
. Yurish S. Y., Novel Universal Frequency-to-Digital Converters and Sensors Interfacing Integrated Circuits, Sensor Electronics and Microsystems Technologies, No.3, 2008, pp.80-90.
. Yurish S. Y., Low-Cost, Intelligent Data Acquisition System for QCM and Other Resonator-Based Bio- and Chemical Sensors, International Journal of Computing, Vol.7, Issue 2, 2008, pp. 9-17 (Download: 249 Kb).
. Yurish S. Y., Novel Modified Method of the Dependent Count for High Precision and Fast Measurements of Frequency-Time Parameters of Electric Signals,in Proceedings of the 2008 IEEE International Instrumentation & Measurement Technology Conference - I2MTC, Victoria, Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada, 12-15 May 2008, pp 876-881 (Download: 737 Kb).
Yurish S. Y., Novel Curricula in Smart Sensors Systems Design in the Frame of
Human Resources and Mobility Marie Curie Chairs (EXC) Action, in Proceedings
of the 7th European Workshop on Microelectronics Education (EWME' 2008),
28-30 2008, Budapest, Hungary,
. Yurish S. Y., Intelligent Data Acquisition System for Quartz Crystal Microbalance and Other Resonator-Based Sensors, in Proceedings of the IEEE International Workshop on Intelligent Data Acquisition and Advanced Computing Systems: Technology and Applications, 6-8 September 2007, Dortmund, Germany, pp. 2-7 (Download: 249 Kb).
. Yurish S. Y. Advanced Analog-to-Digital Conversion Using Voltage-to-Frequency Converters for Remote Sensors. in Proceedings of the 8th International Symposium on Measurement Technology and Intelligent Instruments, 24-27 September 2007, Sendai, Japan, pp. 465-468.
.Yurish S. Y., Smart Sensors Systems: Project Research Results Dissemination, Exploiting and Using in Teaching Activities, in Proceedings of the Marie Curie Conference, European Open Forum (ESOF‘ 2008), 17-18 July 2008, Barcelona, Spain, P-297. (Download poster: 0.5 Mb).
.Yurish S. Y.,
Low-Cost Automatic Paper-Type Sensor Based on
Universal Sensors and Transducers Interfacing ICs, in Proceedings of
the 22nd International Conference EUROSENSORS XXII,
Dresden, Germany, 7-10
September 2008, pp.425-428.
. Yurish S. Y., Integration of Marie Curie Chairs (EXC) Project Based Course on ‘Smart Sensors Systems Design’ into ‘Sensors and Signal Conditioning’ Curricula, in Proceedings of the 12th IMEKO TC1-TC7 joint Symposium on Man Science & Measurement, 3-5 September, 2008, Annecy, France, pp. 439-444 (Download: 1.05 Mb)
. Yurish S.Y., Self-Adaptive Intelligent Sensors and Systems: From Theory to Practical Design, in Proceedings of the IEEE International Workshop on RObotic and Sensors Environments (ROSE' 2008), Keynote,17-18 October 2008, Ottawa, Canada, pp.X-XI (Download abstract and presentation).
Articles and Papers 2009
. Yurish S. Y., Precise Frequency and Period Measurements for Slow Slew Rate Signals Based on the Modified Method of the Dependent Count, Sensors & Transducers, Vol. 107, Issue 8, August 2009, pp.1-16.(Download: 592 Kb)
. Yurish S. Y., Sensor System for Automatic Paper Thickness Detection Based on Universal Sensors and Transducers Interface, Sensor Electronics and Microsystem Technologies, No.3, 2009, pp. 70-78.
. Yurish S. Y., Universal Resistance-to-Digital Converter, in Proceedings of the 2nd International Conference on Advances in Circuits, Electronics and Micro-electronics (CENICS’ 2009), Sliema, Malta, 11-16 October 2009, pp.28-33.
. Yurish S. Y., Resolution of Frequency Measuring Devices based on Modern Frequency-to-Digital Conversion Methods, Information Systems and Networks, State University Lviv Polytechnic, 2009 (in print).
. Yurish S. Y., Universal Capacitive Sensors and Transducers Interface, in Proceedings of the 23rd International Conference EUROSENSORS XXIII, Procedia Chemistry 1, Lausanne, Switzerland, 6-9 September 2009, pp.441-444 (Download: 240 Kb)
. Yurish S. Y., Intelligent Multichannel Data Acquisition Systems Based on Integrated Universal Sensors and Transducers Interfacing Circuits, in Proceedings of the IEEE 5th International Workshop on Intelligent Data Acquisition and Advanced Computing Systems: Technology and Applications (IDAACS’2009), 21-23 September, 2009, Rende (Cosenza), pp.38-43.
. Yurish S. Y., Non-contact, Short Distance Measuring System for Wide Applications, in Proceedings of the IMEKO XIX World Congress, 6-11 September 2009, Lisbon, Portugal, pp.643-647.
. Yurish S. Y., Project Based e-Learning: a New Education Technique for Distance Learning in Smart Sensors Systems, in Proceedings of the 7th IEEE International Conference on Microelectronic Systems Education (MSE' 2009), 25-27 July, 2009, San Francisco, CA, USA, pp.93-96.
. Yurish S. Y., Low-Cost Smart Self-Adaptive Humidity Sensors with Parametric Adaptation, in Proceedings of the SENSOR+TEST Conference 2009, Nurnberg, Germany, 26-28 May 2009, Vol.2, pp.117-122.
. .Yurish S. Y., Advanced Automated Calibration Technique for Universal Sensors and Transducers Interface IC, in Proceedings of the IEEE International Instrumentation and Measurement Technology Conference (I²MTC 2009), Singapore, May 5-7, 2009, pp.402-405 (Download: 533 Kb)
.Yurish S. Y., Low-Cost, Smart Temperature Sensors Systems Based on Universal Frequency-to-Digital Converter, in Proceedings of the IEEE Sensors Applications Symposium (SAS’ 2009), 17-19 February 2009, New Orleans, LA, USA, pp.287-292 (Download: 880 Kb)
. Yurish S. Y., Data Acquisition for Frequency-time Domain Sensors, in Smart Sensor Systems, ed. by Gerard C. M. Meijer, Wiley-Interscience, 2008, pp. 313-341 (See details).
. Yurish S. Y., Digital Sensors and Sensor Systems: Practical Design, IFSA Publishing, 2011 (see details).
. Patent No. 81851 (UA), Method of Frequency and Period Measurement of Harmonic Signal and Device for its Realization / Kirianaki N. V., Yurish S. Y., G01R23/02, February 2008.
Applicability. The patented method and device can be used in high precision counters, tachometers and tachometric systems, multimeters, smart and digital sensors, high performances data acquisition, measurement and sensors systems, frequency (period)-to-digital converters, automotive ABS, etc.
.Patent No. 79849 (UA), Method for Frequency Measurement and Device for its Realization/ Yurish S.Y. G01R23/00, July 2008.
Applicability. The patented method and device can be used in low power consumption smart, digital and autonomous sensors and sensor systems, MEMS based system-on-chip, hand-held multimeters and tachometers, etc.
.Patent No. 79854 (UA), Method for Duty-Cycle Measurement / Yurish S. Y., G01R23/00, July 2008.
Applicability. The patented method can be used in multifunctional counters, smart and digital sensors, duty-cycle (duty off factor) – to – digital converters, multimeters, data acquisition, measurement and sensors systems, etc.
. Patent No. 78146 (UA), Method for Phase-Shift Measurement / Yurish S. Y., Kirianaki N. V., G01R25/00, February 2007.
Applicability. The patented method is useful for digital phase meters, smart and digital sensors and transducers, multifunctional counters, phase-shift - to - digital converters, multimeters, data acquisition, measurement and sensors systems, etc.
. Patent No. 78144 (UA), Method for Frequency Ratio Measurement and Device for its Realization/ Kirianaki N. V., Yurish S. Y., G01R23/02, February 2007.
Applicability. The patented method and device can be used in precision multifunctional counters, smart and digital sensors and transducers, frequency (period) ratio- to – digital converters, multimeters, data acquisition, measurement and sensors systems, etc.
Teaching and Training Activities
1. Smart Sensor Systems Design: Background and Further Perspectives (seminar):
2. Smart Sensors Systems Design (short courses and seminars):
3. Sensors: Types and Classification
4. Sensors and Signal Conditioning course (20 hours, 2 credits, project based learning):
5. Smart Sensors Systems Design - a five-day advanced engineering courses:
6. Smart Sensor Systems Design (online course and tutorial)
Project Related Books:
Sergey Y. Yurish
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