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Mounting Tips for Multi-Axis Sensors

Understanding best practices for mounting is critical to collecting accurate data, especially when it comes to multi-axis load cell solutions. As more testing engineers choose multi-axis sensors for the benefits of additional data, it is important to note that  improper mounting can cause multiple axis to be unaligned and skew the data across the various axis you are measuring.

In follow-up to our webinar, Inventive Multi-Axis and Instrumentation Webinar, here are some valuable reminders on how to properly mount both 3-Axis and 6-Axis load cells to gather the most accurate and reliable data for any test and measurement application.

The first thing to understand is there are certain mounting considerations that are important across every type of multi-axis sensors. These considerations begin with understanding the relationship between the sensor and mounting hardware. The sensor is made up of the electronic internals of a load cell, while the mounting hardware is comprised of plating that needs to align with the test system.

The next thing to understand is that deflections in the system introduce errors and apparent crosstalk. To avoid deflections, plates and fixtures used in mounting must be stiff enough to avoid deflections. The best way to understand this is to try and emulate how stiff the plating was when the sensor was calibrated, this will help you understand how stiff you need the plate to be in the testing application.

Finally, every single multi-axis sensor model also comes with unique mounting instructions, so be sure to consult the written instructions if you have questions. When it comes to mounting instructions for our products, Interface publishes all mounting instructions online.

Mounting instructions provide information on the class of hardware for mounting, as well as important data such as the torque on the dowel pins, for cases that include dowel pins.

For 3-axis mounting, we provide assembly instructions for each type of load cell available. For example, the assembly instructions pictured on the far left shows a 3-Axis sensor with four threaded mounting holes on the top surface and two dowels that should be used to avoid the plate slipping. The dowel pins are crucial to aligning the axis. The instructions also show mating services which are identified with arrows or hash marks.

The 6-axis mounting hardware is a bit different in that there are more holes in the mounting plates and fixtures for dowel pins, which stop the mounting plate from deforming or bending because this can cause inaccuracies in data. Additional mounting locations are necessary to securing the plates and fixtures.

Considerations for 6-axis mounting include the potential need to use a double-plate mounting arrangement, the plates must be suitably thick, the plates must have the same material as sensor for thermal matching, and flat and smooth mounting plate surfaces are preferred. The example here shows some of the features mentioned above.

We hope this simple guide will provide you with the information you need to get the most out of your multi-axis sensors. If you are ever unsure about any details within the mounting process for multi-axis sensors, feel free to contact Interface for support or questions about any multi-axis products.

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES

Interface Multi-Axis Sensor Market Research

Dimensions of Multi-Axis Sensors; An Interface Hosted Forum

Interface Sensor Mounting and Force Plates

Mounting Plates

3Axis-Mounting-Instructions

Recap of Inventive Multi-Axis and Instrumentation Webinar

Interface’s resident solutions experts Keith Skidmore and Ken Bishop detailed a series of multi-axis products and advanced instrumentation options in our latest ForceLeaders webinar. They topics discussed during this recorded event included detailed features and benefits of the line of 3-Axis and 6-Axis Multi-Axis Sensors available from Interface. In summary, if you are looking for more data, to maximize your return on testing investments and need a compact solution compared to using multiple single load cells, multi-axis load cells may be the right solution for your application or testing project.

Pairing your sensor with right type of instrumentation that is best suited for the device and your data requirements is an important consideration.  During event, Keith shares why the BX8 Data Acquisition System and Amplifier provides 8-channel synchronized sampling and internal calculation of axis load values for 6-axis sensors. The BX8 provides high-speed synchronous sampling that is critical for dynamic measurements. It is high resolution and low noise and comes with our BlueDAQ software for data viewing and analysis. There is an option to also use BlueDAQ PRO! with MathScript. Multiple BX8 can be synchronized for use with 12-channel 6-axis sensors and force plates, which are discussed later during the event. For large capacity 6-axis sensors, you can also use two BX8’s to create a 72-coeffecient matrix. Watch the event to learn more and read about 6-Axis and BX8 powerful measurement solution.

In contrast to the BX8, Keith details the Interface BSC4 and shares important features that make it a good instrumentation choice to use with our model 3A, 3AR 3-Axis load cells. It can be used with up to four mV/V or VDC output sensors. It is a compact and convenient instrumentation option, compared to using multiple single-channel amplifiers. Our BSC4D comes with BlueDAQ software and is LabView compatible. Learn more about 3-Axis and BSC4.

You will also get the first look at our latest instrumentation solution, the BX6-BT Wireless 6-Axis Data Logger.  This new product is miniature in size, offers 7-channels with Bluetooth functionality. It logs to micro-SD card and is BlueDAQ compatible. It also does matrix math.

Further in the webinar, get the latest tips on mounting multi-axis sensors and using mounting plates and why we are seeing more use cases for Interface custom force plates. You don’t want to miss out on these important set-up instructions, frequently asked questions, and tips for ensuring you don’t compromise accuracy and reliability in your testing.

Watch the webinar and you’ll also learn about applications that use multi-axis and advanced instrumentation, including for structural testing, friction testing, seat testing and special condition calibration. We will be posting addition blogs from the learnings of this in-depth expert discussion, including top 10 FAQs, calibrating multi-axis sensors and the future of test and measurement using multi-axis load cells.

Interface Solutions for Medical Devices and Healthcare

There is a reason that the most highly regulated industries in the world turn to Interface for force measurement equipment used for medical device and healthcare product design, development and testing. The industry must trust the data they are using to optimize or validate product design because the slightest errors can have devastating results.

In the medical industry, the dependence on accuracy and reliability increases tenfold. Not only are medical devices and healthcare products some of the most complex and delicate technology in the world, the regulations and certification standards they need to meet are stringent. And most importantly, any design flaws or failures could present serious health risks and or worse. Interface has been a trusted partner to medical OEMs and healthcare technology providers around the world for decades.

Our test and measurement products are crucial in the development of numerous medical and healthcare tools, technology, medical devices and equipment used in labs and hospitals alike. Interface has been part of remarkable innovations and test and measurement projects of products implanted inside of the human body and used for prosthetics.

To serve our customers who need high-quality force and torque measurement testing data, Interface is the provider of choice for accurate, reliable and customizable force measurement products and systems.”  Elliot Speidell, Regional Sales at Interface

Engineering and building load cells, along with supplying the best torque transducers, digital instrumentation and accessories all plays a critical role in the evolving needs within the healthcare industry. Interface load cells that can measure capacities as low as 0.11 lbf / 0.5 N have been used to measure the smallest weight change in medical bags. Our multi-axis sensors are used to measure multiple axis of force in the development of prosthetics.

Here are a few applications that showcase different Interface products for healthcare and by medtech OEMs:

VASCULAR CLAMP FORCE

Using an Interface High Speed Data Logging Indicator and Model LBS Load Cell, the customer was able to test multiple clamps, recording the force measurements for each. By using this accurate data, they were able determine the best one to use during surgery. READ THE MEDICAL APP NOTE HERE.

BALL AND SOCKET MED DEVICE

A medical device OEM needed to test a new design for an artificial hip joint. This test needed to validate load consistency, and the durability of their design. Using a 6-Axis Load Cell mounted to the manufacturer’s test machine, they were able to simulate actual use. A Model BX8 was connected to the sensor to collect data. READ THE MEDICAL APP NOTE HERE.

SURGICAL STAPLER FORCE VERIFICATION

A large medical manufacturer required a load button load cell to verify the amount of force needed to activate the surgical stapler. Along with precision measurement, the load cell requirements were it needed to be small, easy to mount, and accurate. Interface’s LBMU Compression Load Button was mounted to the surgical stapler to enable force verification, and then connected to a 9820 Load Cell Indicator to record output. READ THE MEDICAL APP NOTE HERE.

PROSTHETIC FOOT PERFORMANCE

In this use case, Interface supplied products to help our customer test how a prosthetic foot performed during different positions and stances. The products used in this test were the Interface Model 3A120 3-Axis Load Cell, which was installed between the leg socket and the prosthetic foot and the Model 3A120 which was connected to customer’s portable data acquisition system. READ THE MEDICAL APP NOTE HERE.

When standard precision solutions need a custom application, Interface’s solutions team and engineers work directly with medical device manufacturers to deliver specialized products, systems and software that meet evolving needs and innovation.

To provide additional information on the medical customers we serve and the solutions we develop, Interface has created our medical industry case study. The case study provides details on the force measurement needs of the industry, as well as various examples of solutions we have developed for medical devices and equipment from heart medtech devices to some of the machinery used to manufacture medical products.

Click Here to Read the NEW Interface Medical Industry Case Study

You can view some of these medical and healthcare application use cases here.

Contributor:  Elliot Speidell, Regional Sales Director at Interface

 

Better Data and Performance with Interface Multi-Axis Sensors

The increasing consumer demand for smarter and more sophisticated products is transforming design practices. Data-driven design is now at the forefront of product development and has become the catalyst to the explosion of sensor technology. Engineers require an increasing number of sensors to measure every aspect of their product. In response to this market need, we have developed a family of Interface Multi-Axis Sensors.

The Interface Multi-Axis Sensors measure a multitude of forces and moments simultaneously with a single load cell sensor. These sensors can precisely measure the applied force from one direction with little or no cross-talk from the force or moment. Interface’s  3-axis6-axis, and axial torsion load cells provide excellent performance and accuracy in force and torque measurement.

“Our multi-axis sensors measure forces simultaneously in three mutually perpendicular axes, with the 6-axis load cells also measuring torque around those axes.” Ken Bishop, Custom Solutions Director, Interface

The key advantages of Interface’s Multi-Axis Sensors are three-fold:

  1. The ease in which Interface Multi-Axis Load Cells can be set up and put in use provides a user-friendly experience. The software takes very complicated mathematics and presents it in a simple and understandable format. As an example, check out this quick video to see how easy it is to set up the 6-Axis to BX8-HD44.
  2. Interface products are known for accuracy and performance. The Interface Multi-Axis family of products provides the most accurate and comprehensive data readings on the market.
  3. Longevity is a common problem with most multi-axis Sensor products because of the various angles of stress the load cells endure. Interface products are built to last. The combination of robust design and strong materials ensure that Interface Multi-Axis Sensors remain in proper working order for longer than any similar device on the market.

Interface Multi-Axis Load Cells are ideally suited to many industrial and scientific applications, such as www.interfaceforce.com/solutions/aerospace, robotics, automotive, and medical research (orthopedics and biomechanical). In fact, their unique capabilities are helping the medical industry optimize prosthetic design via multi-axis testing. The automotive industry is using Interface’s multi-axis products in wind tunnels, and the military is using them to test the center of gravity in aerospace applications.

Interface is helping provide crucial data to global product engineers across all industries, which has never been available before. Our Multi-Axis Sensors have become a key component to optimizing designs in complex, multi-faceted products. With the data available today through Interface’s unique test and measurement products, engineers have the freedom to be more innovative in product design and development and meet the demands of consumers.

Read about our latest BX8 8-Channel Data Acquisition System and Amplifier and 6-Axis 6A Series 6-Axis Force and Torque Load Cell

An Interface customer ran into challenges when testing a new car seat by attempting to measure the force with a standard load cell rated at 550 pounds. After applying only 150 pounds of force, the load cells would break. While helping to troubleshoot the issue, Interface realized that the unique contour of the car seat was applying twist pressure that surpassed the standard load cells moment rating. Interface provided the customer with a 6-Axis Load Cell and they were able to measure the force on multiple-axis to optimize the car seat design. This is an example of a unique product development environment in which Interface Multi-Axis Sensors thrive.

By Ken Bishop, Custom Solutions Director, Interface