18 May 2009 Design, fabrication and characterization of a micro-fluxgate intended for parallel robot application
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This paper presents a micro-magnetometer based on the fluxgate principle. Fluxgates detect the magnitude and direction of DC and low-frequency AC magnetic fields. The detectable flux density typically ranges from several 10 nT to about 1 mT. The introduced fluxgate sensor is fabricated using MEMS-technologies, basically UV depth lithography and electroplating for manufacturing high aspect ratio structures. It consists of helical copper coils around a soft magnetic nickel-iron (NiFe) core. The core is designed in so-called racetrack geometry, whereby the directional sensitivity of the sensor is considerably higher compared to common ring-core fluxgates. The electrical operation is based on analyzing the 2nd harmonic of the AC output signal. Configuration, manufacturing and selected characteristics of the fluxgate magnetometer are discussed in this work. The fluxgate builds the basis of an innovative angular sensor system for a parallel robot with HEXA-structure. Integrated into the passive joints of the parallel robot, the fluxgates are combined with permanent magnets rotating on the joint shafts. The magnet transmits the angular information via its magnetic orientation. In this way, the angles between the kinematic elements are measured, which allows self-calibration of the robot and the fast analytical solution of direct kinematics for an advanced workspace monitoring.
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M. R. Kirchhoff, G. Bogdanski, S. Büttgenbach, "Design, fabrication and characterization of a micro-fluxgate intended for parallel robot application", Proc. SPIE 7362, Smart Sensors, Actuators, and MEMS IV, 73621P (18 May 2009); doi: 10.1117/12.822280; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.822280

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