A force sensor is a device that is used to measure the magnitude and direction of a force applied to an object. Some applications industrial process control, material testing, and consumer electronics.
Force sensors, also known as load cells, are devices that measure the force exerted on them, and convert this physical quantity into an electrical signal that can be read by an electronic device such as a computer or microcontroller. There are several different types of force sensors available, including:
Compression load cells: These sensors are designed to measure force in a linear direction, and are often used in weighing scales and other applications where an object is being pressed down onto the sensor.
Tension load cells: These sensors are designed to measure force in a linear direction, but in the opposite direction of compression load cells, and are often used in applications such as crane scales and tension testing machines.
Bend beam load cells: These sensors are designed to measure force applied at a single point, and are often used in applications such as process control and force testing.
S-beam load cells: These sensors are similar to bend beam load cells but have an S shape, to measure force that is applied at multiple points.
Canister load cells: These are cylindrical in shape and used for measuring compressive and tensile forces.
Flex sensors are similar to force sensors, but are designed to measure flexure or bending in a material, rather than force. They are often used in applications such as measuring the position of a joystick or the flexure of a wing on a model airplane.
There are also load sensors that can measure multiple types of loads such as torque, pressure, and temperature. Some of the devices which are designed to measure the load of a particular area are also known as pressure sensors. These are generally used in industrial and medical applications to measure the force exerted by fluids or gases on a surface.
1.What is a load sensor?
A load cell is a type of transducer, specifically a force transducer. It converts a force such as tension, compression, pressure, or torque into an electrical signal. As the force applied to the load cell increases, the electrical signal changes proportionally.
2.What is the use of a load sensor?
A load cell (or loadcell) is a transducer which converts force into a measurable electrical output. Load cells are sometimes used where intrinsic safety and hygiene are desired, and hydraulic load cells are considered in remote locations, as they do not require a power supply. Load cells have great importance and applications in the weighing industry.
3.What are the types of load sensors?
Pneumatic Load Cell: A pneumatic load cell consists of an elastic diaphragm which is attached to a platform surface where the weight will be measured. An air regulator is integrated with the load cell to flow of air pressure to the system and a pressure gauge.
Hydraulic Load Cell: These load cells are similar to pneumatic load cells but instead of air, they use the pressurized liquid. They consist of an elastic diaphragm, piston with a loading platform on top of the diaphragm, Oil or water that will be inside the piston and bourdon tube pressure gauge. When a load is placed on the loading platform the piston applies pressure to the liquid contained inside it. The pressure increase of the liquid is proportional to the applied force or weight.
Strain Gauge Load Cells: A strain gauge load cell is a transducer that changes in electrical resistance when under stress or strain. The electrical resistance is proportional to the stress or strain placed on the cell making it easy to calibrate into an accurate measurement.
Capacitive Load Cells: Capacitive load cells work on the principle of capacitance, which is the ability of a system to store a charge. The load cell is made up of two flat plates parallel to each other. The plates will have a current applied to them and once the charge is stable it gets stored between the plates.