Thin-film sensors to integrate process monitoring
March 18, 2014 // Christoph Hammerschmidt
In modern production processes, sensing is a critical issue since more and more processes are becoming integrated into a closed control loop. In order to place the sensors closely enough to relevant locations in the production line they have to be as slim and compact as possible. At the Hannover fair, the Fraunhofer Adaptronics Alliance has found an innovative solution.
Information directly from the main stress zone of a manufacturing process are crucial for modern process control systems. Pressure and temperature data along with their associated spatial data make steady process control. To achieve exact data, the sensors must be attached to the workpieces - but this is exactly where typically there is no room available for any sensors. For this reason the Fraunhofer Institute for Surface Engineering and Thin Films (Braunschweig, Germany) has devised an innovative solution: The scientists are coating the machine tools with non-wearing thin-film sensors.
To withstand the abrasive forces in the main stress zones, the piezo and temperature sensors are enclosed into robust hydrocarbon layers. This makes it possible to integrate the sensors directly into tools for injection moulding, sheet metal filling and punching. The basis for these layered sensory systems is a multi-functional hydrocarbon layer, baptized DiaForce which unites abrasive resistance with wear resistance and piezo-resistive behaviour.
To achieve measurements with spatial information, the researchers deposited electrode structures made from chromium o top of the sensors. To prevent wear, these chromium layers are covered with an electrical insulator layer of SiCON, a material made of silicon and oxygen. Optional, an additional meander structure is can be applied to this SiCON layer which would result in local temperature measurement devices. These devices again are protected by a SiCON cover. The entire system represents a layered sensor at an overall thickness of some 9 to 12 micrometres. These layered sensors are attached to carriers shaped according to the respective application; afterwards they are integrated to the machine tool where they measure relevant parameter and transmit the results to a control unit. Thus they provide a significant contribution to understanding and monitoring the process. The measurement provides a significant contribution to process optimisation and can checked against numeric simulation.
The sensor module for use in injection moulding processes is a result of the "Wechselwirkungen" project funded by the German ministry for Economy and Technology. The sensors will be on display at Fraunhofer stand, H2, Stand D13.
For more information visit www.adaptronik.fraunhofer.de
Read alsoCustomer-specific torque measurement on vehicle drive shafts All news
Spansion expands MCUs with IoT on its radar
October 21, 2014
On Monday, October 20, Spansion Inc. unveiled 96 new MCUs, fresh additions to the company's FM4 family of MCUs based on the ...
European plastic electronics industry flexes its muscles
Graphene aerogels promise enhanced energy storage performance
R&S demos 5G test setup
Global chip capex to rise 11% in 2014
"New" MEMS evolution coming, predicts Yole
October 20, 2014
A change is occurring in the technology options behind MEMS sensors, according to Yole Developpement.
TSMC Capex to exceed $10B in FinFET ramp-up
Supercomputer simulations point path to better Mg-ion batteries
Simpler circuit design unlocks power of superconducting devices
- 5 Best Practices for Designing Flexible Test Stations
- Intelligent PLCs Expand the Internet of Things
- Solutions for Millimeter Wave Wireless Backhaul
- Enter Linduino
InterviewCEO interview: AMS' Laney on driving a sensor-driven business
Kirk Laney, CEO of Austrian mixed-signal chip and sensor company AMS, wants to leverage the opportunity that technology affords to create new markets for sensors and sensor interfaces.
Filter WizardCheck out the Filter Wizard Series of articles by Filter Guru Kendall Castor-Perry which provide invaluable practical Analog Design guidelines.
Linear video channel
READER OFFERRead more
This month, Oscium is giving away three of its iMSO-204L dual analogue iOS oscilloscopes, worth USD400 each. Designed with native Lightning compatibility, the iMSO-204L transforms the iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch into an ultra-portable, two-channel oscilloscope.
Since Apple changed its connector, Oscium has been working to bring native compatibility to its customers. The third generation...MORE INFO AND LAST MONTH' WINNERS...
December 15, 2011 | Texas instruments | 222901974
Unique Ser/Des technology supports encrypted video and audio content with full duplex bi-directional control channel over a single wire interface.