The easiest to measure, for an ultrasonic sensor, is large, smooth, and flat. This is a hard target.
A soft target, on the other hand, has poor reflective characteristics. Soft targets include uneven surfaces, sound absorbent material, and small objects.
As a rule of thumb, a soft target cuts the effective range of the sensor in half. For example, a 50 ft. range sensor would work well up to 25 ft. on a soft target.
To set up the gain control feature for soft targets in the IRU series of sensors, do the following steps:
Step 1: Connect the RST-3001 module to the sensor and your computer. Open the IRU software.
Step 2: After communication has been established, enter “3” in the window marked “Gain Control”.
Step 3: Click on the “Send” tab. This will send the new parameter to the sensor.
Using a long range ultrasonic sensor with gain control set for soft targets will provide better readings for poor reflective characteristics. This will enable the sensor to give the best possible readings for an accurate level measurement.
photo credit: Victorgrigas via Wikimedia Commons