A how-to guide to piezoelectric accelerometers

April 22, 2015 //By Peter Clarke
A how-to guide to piezoelectric accelerometers
Tim McClune, president of Linear Integrated Systems Inc., discusses the background to a book on piezoelectric accelerometers with integrated electronics with its Russian author, Felix Levinzon.

Over the spring break I dropped by Meggitt Sensing Systems to ask Felix Levinzon to sign my copy of his new book, Piezoelectric Accelerometers with Integral Electronics, and I was able to spend some time with him discussing JFETs, MOSFETs, and Russian winters.

Tim McClune, president of Linear Integrated Systems.

Levinzon was a scientist working in the field of low-noise electronics in Russia before he came to the USA in 1993. He joined Endevco/Meggitt in 1996. "And I found this company's product was very similar to what I did in Russia. This company manufactures sensors, which should be low noise and high temperature and small size, everything like this. So I specialized in these fields."

A native of Russia, Felix received his MS degree from the Radio Engineering University in Taganrog, Russia in 1961 and completed his PhD in Moscow in 1974. He specialized in low-noise electronics.

I made about 50 trips to Russia since 1998 to work with Russian scientists with a previous employer, and I talked with Felix about cold Russian winters and the year-round warmth of Southern California. But he said a difference – aside from snow and sub-zero temperatures, either C or F – between working for a U.S. high tech company and the scientific institute in Moscow was, "the biggest product [in Moscow] was to publish papers."

"When I came here, the company was not so interested in publishing, just designing sensors," Felix told me. "I like to design sensors, but I also like to publish my designs. Of course there were many restrictions to keep the secrets of the company, but I know how to do this and did this."

Next: three most-needed parameters

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