Signal conditioning is the technique of making a signal from a sensor or transducer suitable for processing by data acquisition equipment.
A signal conditioner is a device that converts one type of electronic signal into another type of signal.
Its primary use is to convert a signal that may be difficult to read by conventional instrumentation into a more easily read format.
Functions of Signal conditioner device:
- Signal Conversion: The main function of a signal conditioner is to pick up the signal and convert it into a higher level of an electrical signal. Sensors employed, the signals generated can be converted into standard process signals.
- Linearization: Converting a non-linear input signal to a linear output signal. This is common for thermocouple signals.
- Amplification: The next step is signal amplification and the process of increasing the signal for processing or digitization. There are two ways that signal amplification can be performed; by increasing the resolution of the input signal, or by increasing the signal-to-noise ratio.
- Filtering: Another important function of a signal conditioner is filtering, and this is where the signal frequency spectrum is filtered to only include the valid data and block any noise. There are two types of filters: passive and active. A passive filter only uses capacitors, resistors, and inductors with a maximum gain of one. An active filter uses passive components in addition to active components such as operational amplifiers and transistors.
- Cold junction compensation: This is an anomaly, Cold junction compensation compensates for the missing thermoelectric voltage since the thermocouple cold end of an instrument.