Miniature inertial measurement units

Louise Davis

Advanced Sensors & Calibration has announced the introduction of a new range of industrial-grade MEMS (micro-electro-mechanical) inertial measurement unit (IMU), ASC IMU 7.X.Y. It is a miniature 6-axis analogue output sensor featuring the latest generation of MEMS vibrating ring gyros and high-precision MEMS accelerometers. The IMU is targeted at low-cost navigation-aiding and pointing systems found in industrial, agriculture and automotive markets, among others. 

ASC IMU 7.X.Y can be customised with accelerometers from ±2g to ±50g and gyros from ±75°/s to ±900°/s. The IMU can be powered by a +5V to +40V DC power supply where the output voltage is independent of the supply. This mini-IMU is protected by lightweight anodised aluminium housing and features the industry-standard 12-pin connector with a detachable cable. The IMU is rated to IP65 and works from -40°C to +85°C.

ASC’s IMU 7.X.Y has excellent temperature stability, low noise and immunity to mechanical shocks, all of which are vital, for instance in precision agricultural applications involving moving heavy machinery over undulating terrain or in applications that are size- and weight-constrained and require a small IMU to secure operations during GPS outage.

The new IMUs are especially suitable for testing applications. In the marine area they are used on ship models to simulate wave-induced motions in launch tests from platforms where heavy shocks are involved. During dynamic testing applications in the automotive sector, the IMU provides short-term orientation measurement to keep the car moving on a digital map when the GPS signal is lost, for example in tunnels.