Processing and digitizing of analogue signals
FEKT-CZDAAcad. year: 2019/2020
The course deals with challenges of the design of analog circuits for processing signals from sensors including presentation of tools for simulation and analysis of electronic circuits, data acquisition, signal processing, and hardware resources for the practical design of electronic circuits. Students will learn basic signal conditioning circuits for active and passive sensors - the use of bridges, current sources, amplifiers and filters. Further, electronic circuitry for resistive, capacitive and inductive sensors, conditioning and processing of signals from thermocouples, photodiodes and sensors with piezoelements are analyzed in detail. Sensors with current loop output, mixed and isolated interface, and circuits for digitization of analog signals including specific sensors with digital output are also considered.
Learning outcomes of the course unit
The student is able to design independently and realize practically the basic electronic circuit for signal conditioning and processing from sensors of the most commonly measured physical quantities, he can also describe basic procedures for collecting and processing data using virtual instrumentation. He can identify specific circuit design for each type of physical transducers and apply it to a theoretical design. He is able to analyze basic circuit solution for processing signals from sensors with operational amplifiers with computer support in the Multisim environment. He can control the simulation environment and use fundamental analysis to determine and verify the properties of the solved electronic circuit. He can describe development platform NI Elvis and can use it to prototype design and verification of electronic circuit with basic electronic components and operational amplifiers. He can test created electronic circuit and compare the results with the simulation model and illustrate the basic static and dynamic parameters of the circuit (operating point, frequency response, etc.). He is able to describe common electrical interfaces of sensors and explain the basic principles of A/D converters used in electronic circuits of sensors of physical quantities.
The student who enrolls this course should be able to explain principle of operation of basic passive and active electronic components, define their general parameters and use them in basic electronic circuits. He should also be able to list basic laws and rules for solving linear electronic circuits and use them. He should define the basic transmission parameters of passive two-ports, calculate and illustrate their frequency characteristics. He should explain the principle of simple operational amplifier and illustrate its basic internal structure. He should be able to enumerate basic types of A/D converters and describe the functional principle of D/A converters. He should be able to define a measurement system based on virtual instrumentation and describe the basic possibility of creating such a system using LabVIEW environment.
Student should have such language skills to understand some educational materials in English.
Recommended optional programme components
Recommended or required reading
KESTER, W. Practical design techniques for sensor signal conditioning. Analog Devices, Inc., USA, 1999. ISBN 0-916550-20-6. (EN)
SHEINGOLD, D. H. Transducer Interfacing Handbook - A Guide to Analog Signal Conditioning. Analog Device, Inc., USA, First edition, March 1980. 231 p. ISBN 0 916550-05-2. (EN)
KITCHON CH., COUNTS, L. A Designer's Guide to Instrumentation Amplifiers. Analog Devices, Inc., USA, Second Edition, 2004. 108 p. Available at
WILLIAMS, J. Application Note 43 - Bridge Circuits. Linear Technology, USA, June 1990. 48 p. Available at
PALLÁS-ARENY, R., WEBSTER, J. G. Sensors and Signal Conditioning. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., USA, Second edition, 2000. 587 p. ISBN 0 471-33232-1. (EN)
HOROWITZ, P., HILL, W. The art of electronics. Cambridge University Press, UK, Second Edition, 1989 (2001). 1125 p. ISBN 0 521-37095-7. (EN)
WILSON, J. S. Sensor Technology Handbook. Elsevier, Inc., USA, Second edition, 2005. 691 p. ISBN 0 7506-7729-5. (EN)
Planned learning activities and teaching methods
Techning methods include lectures and practical laboratories.
Assesment methods and criteria linked to learning outcomes
Up to 40 points for the laboratory exercises in the following composition:
- up to 5 points (2+3) for two short practical tasks in the Multisim environment,
- up to 5 points (2+3) for two short practical tasks when using the NI Elvis platform,
- up to 10 points for test of theoretical knowledge related to operation of simulation, development and prototype software tools for electronic circuit design, signal acquisition and processing,
- up to 10 points from an individual theoretical design of electrical circuit involving simulation in Multisim,
- up to 10 points from practical realization and evaluation of parameters of electrical circuit using NI Elvis platform.
To get course-unit credit and the possibility to access the final exam at least half points from laboratory exercises is required, i.e. 20 points.
Up to 60 points for the written exam.
Language of instruction
1. Introduction to the design of analog circuits for processing signals from sensors.
2. Tools for simulation and analysis of electronic circuits. MultiSIM. Software tools for data acquisition and data processing. LabVIEW.
3. Hardware and software tools for practical design of electronic circuits and analog and digital signals acquisition. NI ELVIS.
4. Sensors of nonelectrical quantities considered as electronic circuit components (active, passive).
5. Circuits for sensor signal conditioning - use of bridges, current sources, amplifiers and filters.
6. Amplifiers (operational, instrumentation, charge). Bridge sensor circuits (resistive, capacitive, inductive).
7. Passive sensors - circuitry for temperature and position sensors. Sensors with high impedance.
8. Passive sensors II - circuitry for resistance strain, force, pressure and flow sensors.
9. Active sensors - circuitry for thermocouples, photodiodes.
10. Active sensors II - circuitry for sensor position, velocity and acceleration.
11. Current loop, mixed and isolated interface.
12. Converters for digitization of analog signals.
13. Sensors with digital interface (I2C, SPI, etc.).
The main aim of the course is to get basic theoretical and practical skills for unaided design of analog circuits, especially for processing signals from sensors. Get practical experience with software for theoretical design and simulation of analog circuits, hardware and software resources for processing and digitization of analog signals from sensors and basic methods for processing and analysis of measured data.
Specification of controlled education, way of implementation and compensation for absences
Mandatory participation in laboratory exercises, in case of absence the exercise work can be supplemented with alternative exercise in same week or with a self-study of additional literature. Two excused absences are tolerated.