1998-02-01

Modern Concepts for Low Cost, High Performance Position Sensors 980172

„Modern motor vehicles do not work without electronics.” Although this simple statement has been valid for more than two decades, the demand for electronics and thus the position sensors involved have only just proliferated over the last several years. The well known throttle position and pedal position sensors enable the electronics to support engine operations in generating power while meeting environmental legislation. In addition, there is a steadily growing range of applications concerning passenger(s) safety and comfort (e.g. headlight control, variable suspension and various memory functions).On the one hand, there is increasing demand on the performance and durability for position sensors, on the other hand, there is a tremendous pricing pressure on the sensor supplier to reduce costs.This paper provides examples for applications involving rotary and linear resistor based sensors, wired as a voltage divider circuit. It will describe from a more practical point of view, how thick film screen printing technology, combined with precise wipers, can meet or exceed the highest design parameters in terms of performance and cost. Various substrates and resistive layers are discussed, as well as suitable wiper configurations, that will bridge the gap to the newer efforts on non-contacting position sensors.

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