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Journal cover: Sensor Review

Sensor Review

ISSN: 0260-2288

Online from: 1981

Subject Area: Electrical & Electronic Engineering

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Charge transfer sensing

Document Information:
Title:Charge transfer sensing
Author(s):Hal Philipp, (Hal Philipp is at Quantum Research Group Ltd, Enterprise House, Southampton, SO14 3XB. Tel: 01703 224 772; Fax: 01703 453 939; E-mail:; WWW:
Citation:Hal Philipp, (1999) "Charge transfer sensing", Sensor Review, Vol. 19 Iss: 2, pp.96 - 105
Keywords:Capacitance, Sensors
Article type:Technical paper
DOI:10.1108/02602289910266250 (Permanent URL)
Publisher:MCB UP Ltd
Abstract:While the transference of charge is an essential aspect of every capacitance sensor, a relatively new form of sensor makes overt use of the principle of charge conservation first deduced by Watson in the 1740s. Updated to use a microcontroller, mosfet switches, fet-input opamps and band gap references, the principle of charge transference can be used to create an extremely sensitive and stable device with unique properties that transcend those of more pedestrian capacitance sensors. Also known as “QT” sensors, charge transfer sensors can have a dynamic range spanning many decades with noise floors in the sub-femtofarad regime, allowing differential resolutions of mere fractions of a femtofarad. Such sensors are proving to have unique applications considered heretofore impossible, while also proving themselves as replacements for much more expensive sensing systems using photoelectric, acoustic, RF, and optical imaging techniques.

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