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GlennA
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Gold
encoder or resolver ?
GlennA   1/6/2013 10:20:30 PM
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I have only heard of rotary magnetic coupled devices called resolvers.  The two versions that I have seen are an exciter input and sine and cosine outputs, or sine and cosine inputs and a resultant output.  Another component used with encoders in robotics is the revolution counter - the motor may turn many rotations in an axis' range of motion.

Jon Titus
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Blogger
Re: encoder or resolver ?
Jon Titus   1/6/2013 11:05:58 PM
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The encoders provide an output that immediately indicates position information. A resolver produces signals that require demodulation.  I'll talk about resolvers in another column, coming soon.

Jack Rupert, PE
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Platinum
Re: encoder or resolver ?
Jack Rupert, PE   1/12/2013 3:07:26 PM
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I don't know about you, but it seems to me that industry in general is really starting to confuse those two words.  I've seen ads for "analog encoders" that talk about their internal technologies that perfectly describe a resolver.  (I also dont' think the 90% of recent college graduates could define one difference).

Jon Titus
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Blogger
Re: encoder or resolver ?
Jon Titus   1/12/2013 3:16:53 PM
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Hi, Jack.

Perhaps the analog encoders use a type of analog-signal detector (magnetic, capacitive...) and then perform the analog-to-digital conversions and information coding within the encoder case.

Jack Rupert, PE
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Platinum
Re: encoder or resolver ?
Jack Rupert, PE   1/19/2013 5:21:50 PM
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Interesting observation, Jon.  That could be the answer.  Sort of a hybrid system.

bobjengr
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Platinum
ROTARY ENCODERS
bobjengr   1/20/2013 1:14:17 PM
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Jon, excellent article.   I do considerable work in designing and developing work cells for robotic systems.  Rotary and linear encoders are extremely valuable and accurate and provide just about the only reliable method for determining shaft position--which is critical to the function of the equipment.   Having a basic understanding of how they work is paramount when trying to bring about a "fix" or troubleshooting a problem. Many thanks for the information.

Jon Titus
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Blogger
Re: ROTARY ENCODERS
Jon Titus   1/20/2013 3:29:21 PM
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Thanks, Bobj.  My next column will introduce resolvers that produce an analog output.  Interesting devices and a lot more to them that engineers might think.

mrdon
User Rank
Gold
Re: ROTARY ENCODERS
mrdon   1/20/2013 8:45:07 PM
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Hi Jon, Nice summary of the various encoders and their applications to motors. I'll be sharing this material with my Controls Systems class at ITT Tech along with the encoder handbook. I look forward to reading your column on resolvers.



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