Encoders are sensor devices that determine mechanical motion and create a digital signal from it. In this way, they are responsible for providing information on details of motion like direction, velocity, and position.
Types of encoders
Mainly, encoders can be categorised into two types. These are:
In this type of encoder, there’s a magnetic sensor that moves along a magnetic scale. This movement allows easy detection of any changes in the magnetic field. Linear encoders, however, aren’t capable of sensing any external factors like light or dust. They follow a linear path to measure motion.
Unlike linear encoders, rotary encoders either have a magnetic sensor or a non-magnetic one. This type of encoder is capable of detecting very small changes in the magnetic field. They follow a rotational path to measure motion.
Importance of encoders
Encoders are one of the most widely used sensors in today’s world. They are perhaps the most capable device to extract accurate and precise information from moving mechanical equipment. From speed to position and direction, encoders can provide detailed information more thoroughly.
Owing to their increasing resolutions, sensitivity, and cost-effectiveness, encoders have become important devices for a lot of industries. For example, they are now being extensively used across industries like consumer electronics, medical, manufacturing, automotive, military, and instrumentation. As such, encoders are important components of printers, robotics, medical scanners, telescopes, etc.