Instrumentation & Measurement Magazine 24-9 - 41

Fig. 1. Q1 type beam screen [7]. (Image used with permission, courtesy of M. Morrone.)
sensors and their integration in the self-supporting structure
and presents a brief excerpt of the results obtained during the
testing campaign.
Sensor Design
The sensors are based on thin-cantilevered strips. The measurement
principle is the determination of the strains induced
on the surface of the strip by a displacement normal to the
free extremity of the strip itself (Fig. 1). The strain gauges are
connected in half Wheatstone bridge, so that temperature and
magnetic effects are self-compensated.
The plainness of the functioning principle of the sensor
Fig. 2. Strain gauge-based displacement sensor functioning principle.
December 2021
makes it relatively effortless to tailor the design of it according
to the requirements of a particular task. In the application
discussed in the following section, the design criteria were a
measurement range (displacement of the free extremity of
the sensor) of at least 1 mm and a maximum linearity deviation
of 1%, while being imperative for the sensor to be
insensitive to magnetic fields. A two-dimensional model including
the stripe, introduced to ANSYS software in order
to optimize the sensitivity and guarantee the mechanical
integrity of the sensor under the previously stated specifications,
yielded an optimum solution consisting in 46x12x0.5
mm strips, with the material of choice a copper-beryllium
alloy because of its favorable mechanical properties. A second
part of the study was devoted to analyze the magnetic
forces induced in the sensor by the expected magnetic fields
during its service life that would induce spurious effects in
the measurement despite the strain gauges' magnetic fields
self-compensation.
IEEE Instrumentation & Measurement Magazine
41

Instrumentation & Measurement Magazine 24-9

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