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Outputs 101: Amplified Voltage Output

A voltage output can be amplified to strengthen the signal and make it less susceptible to electrical noise

Industrial instrumentation with an amplified voltage output are quite common in applications where electrical noise might be an issue with other outputs.

How It Works

The amplified signal is generated from a sensor with an output coming from a transducer or electrical signal. The output signal goes through an Operational Amplifier (OP-Amp), and is amplified to become a DC voltage signal.

The most common types of voltage outputs used are 0-2VDC, 0-5VDC and 0-10VDC.

Good For Noise

This signal conditioning through an OP-Amp provides a very high output as compared with a millivolt output.  Because of the higher output, these types of sensors are not as susceptible to electrical noise and can be used in in most industrial environments without being adversely affected.

Short Cable Runs

However, due to voltage drop across long cable runs, voltage output sensors are usually used in applications where the cable runs are less than 100 ft.

Applications

Common applications that use voltage outputs include temperature, speed, pressure, displacement, strain distance and volume.  The voltage output would proportional or linear to the quantity being measured.

Voltage outputs can be used for information only or can be sent to Programmable Logic Controllers PLC), Distributed Control Systems (DCS), Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) systems or other control devices. 

This will allow control systems to change the voltage output of a sensor into readable values that can be used to control other devices and processes found in industrial applications.

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