A how-to guide to piezoelectric accelerometers: Page 2 of 3

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.

Levinzon said he’s always enjoyed publishing along with designing and producing new products. "So I’ve published already many papers, mostly in IEEE journals, and after this, maybe last year, I start to think it’s time to publish a book based on these papers," he said. "I found a publisher, and they agreed to publish the book. So I worked for about half of a year and finally they published it in August of last year."

When Levinzon was researching the literature about IEPE sensors, he found a lot of material had been published on the physics and theory of piezoelectric transducers, but no full-length work on the integrated electronics needed to make these devices useful in many applications.

Felix Levinzon, author of Piezoelectric Accelerometers with Integral Electronics.

The design of Integrated Electronics Piezoelectric (IEPE) accelerometers is driven by three basic design constraints, Levinzon said. The first his customers require is temperature range, from cryogenic to more than 200 ̊C. The second is low noise, "as low as possible." And the third parameter is size and weight, "as small as possible."

"These are the three parameters which are needed the most, and I specialize in all three," Levinzon said. "Other parameters are maybe not so critical, voltage supply, current supply," he said. "Sensitivity, of course it's important. Range is also maybe not so important compared with the first three."

The book is an excellent compendium of practical design expertise necessary to develop IEPE devices, whether using an op amp or a low-noise discrete JFET or MOSFET. It’s richly detailed with curves, schematics, equations and test data in addition to descriptions and explanations.

Next: It's actually a good book

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