Sensors & Transducers


Rotary encoders with UL certification

July 2005 Sensors & Transducers

Fraba Posital's Optocode encoder series has recently been certified by the UL, thereby fulfilling an important requirement for customers in NAFTA and other markets. The rotary encoders provide realtime absolute position values without using backup batteries and even after being moved in power-off mode. The Optocode series offers a total measuring range of up to 30 bits, and is therefore suitable for applications where exact movements and orientation are essential, eg, positioning stages and antenna systems. The heart of the single-turn sensor which delivers a resolution of up to 16 bit (0,005°) per revolution is a highly integrated Opto-ASIC. A maximum of 16,384 revolutions (14 bit) is covered in the multiturn mode that is based on a revised and improved version of the proven gearing technology.

In its 'classical design', an encoder determines a position solely via a grey code that is applied to a plastic disc. LED light shines through the disc onto the opto-ASIC, creating a light and dark pattern that can be assigned unambiguously to the disc's position. In Optocode encoders, however, a combination of a grey code pattern and two additional incremental tracks is analysed. An absolute position signal with a 16 bit resolution can thus be gained from only 13 tracks, which allows for a very compact housing with a diameter of merely 58 mm. Depending on the model, the devices are connected via parallel, SSI, fieldbus or Industrial Ethernet interfaces. An optional output of incremental signals can be used for velocity control and monitoring.



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