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## Performance characteristics of sensors and actuators

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The properties of sensors and actuators are usually supplied by the manufacturer and engineers can usually rely on these data. There are instances, however, in which one might wish to use a device outside its stated range or improve on one of its properties (say, linearity), or even use it for an unintended use (e.g., use a microphone as a dynamic pressure sensor or as a vibration sensor). In these cases, the engineer will need to evaluate the characteristics or, at the very least, derive its calibration curve rather than relying on the manufacturer's calibration curve. Sometimes, too, the available data may be lacking certain information, again necessitating an evaluation. In cases such as these, the engineer needs to understand what affects these properties and what can be done to control them.

Chapter Contents:

• 2.1 Introduction
• 2.2 Input and output characteristics
• 2.2.1 Transfer function
• 2.2.2 Impedance and impedance matching
• 2.2.3 Range, span, input and output full scale, resolution, and dynamic range
• 2.2.4 Accuracy, errors, and repeatability
• 2.2.5 Sensitivity and sensitivity analysis
• 2.2.6 Hysteresis, nonlinearity, and saturation
• 2.2.7 Frequency response, response time, and bandwidth
• 2.2.8 Calibration
• 2.2.9 Excitation
• 2.2.11 Reliability
• 2.3 Simulation
• 2.4 Problems

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