DSP solution of VRVT Conditioning Board
DSP-based conditioning electronics for position transducer
Technologies used

    Digital Signal Processor (DSP)

Industrial sector (PRODCOM code)
    332 Instruments and appliances for measuring, checking, testing etc.

A prototype DSP-based conditioning electronics module for a range of position transducers was produced by Penny and Giles Controls Ltd, United Kingdom, in 12 months with a budget of 45KECU. The company has 320 employees, with four engineers involved in electronics design.

The company designs and manufactures high quality position measurement and control products for applications within the aerospace and industrial markets. Products include precision rotary and linear potentiometers, non-contacting linear and rotary displacement transducers, tilt sensors, optical encoders, joystick controllers together with associated analogue signal conditioning electronics.

The new design offers higher performance and simpler power requirements compared to the existing completely analogue product. It also provides an optional digital position output, which is increasingly becoming a requirement for use with control systems. The cost of the new product is currently similar to the existing product, however a further design iteration to remove a supporting PIC microcontroller (used for sinewave generation) is intended before full production. The new product will strengthen our position in existing markets, and will also enable us to target new markets such as vehicle borne equipment.

The experiment will be of interest to any companies involved in sensor/transducer design, or in analogue control electronics. It emphasises the importance of working closely with marketing when defining the product, and in periodically reviewing the specification during the development period. It also shows how the company was able to resolve a particularly troublesome technical problem relating to the DSP chip interfacing, by seeking a company with direct experience of the particular DSP chip used.

The payback period is expected to be 3 months, following the start of full production sales. The return on investment (total profit/development cost), based on total sales up to the end of year 2000, is expected to be 1400%.


    Penny & Giles Controls Ltd,
    15 Airfield Road,
    Dorset BH23 3TJ,

Detailed information

You can also benefit from microelectronics

DSP technology provided Penny & Giles Controls Ltd with the means of improving its products and enhancing its market position. You can also achieve significant benefits by acquiring the right microelectronics technology and utilising it in your product or manufacturing process. You can get help from FUSE to realise this.

FUSE is a technology transfer programme, funded by the European Commission to stimulate the wider use of microelectronics technologies by European enterprises to increase their competitiveness and enhance their economic growth. The demonstrator described here is one of many examples in the public FUSE portfolio covering the whole spectrum of microelectronics technologies and spanning a wide range of applications and industry sectors.

FUSE provides you with:

  • Best practice in acquiring specific microelectronics technologies and conducting full development projects through the FUSE portfolio of real life demonstrator documents.
  • Local training and expert support to plan your innovation realistically and help you conduct your project successfully.

Further information and support relating to this and other demonstrators can be obtained from the addresses below.

Further information   Guiding Technology Transfer Node
For further information and support regarding this case study, please contact a Technology Transfer Node (TTN) in your region.
Homepage: http://www.fuse-network.com
Bournemouth University
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