In this paper, a new electromagnetic angular position sensing method using high-magnetic-permeability metal (e.g., mu-metal) is proposed for measurement of joint angles of rotational mechanisms. An electromagnet and magnetic sensors are both located on one mechanical part and the mu-metal element is located on the other mechanical part with relative rotation to the first part around the joint. The mu-metal with high magnetic permeability is easily magnetized by the electromagnet and it exerts an additional magnetic field on the magnetic sensors dependent on the rotation angle nonlinearly. This influence is utilized for angle estimation using an extended Kalman filter. Two configurations of the angle sensing system are designed and modeled using numerical simulation. Experimental results show that the angle measurement error for both configurations is under 1% over their respective sensing range. The mu-metal based angle sensing system is also validated to be immune to ferromagnetic disturbances due to the use of an alternating magnetic field. The proposed angle sensing method is non-contacting and non-intrusive, and its off-joint configuration can measure joint angle without needing to be installed in the joint.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This work was supported in part by the University of Minnesota through the Doctoral Dissertation Fellowship, in part by the Research Project funded by Case New Holland Corporation, and in part by the National Natural Science Foundation of China under Grant 62003339
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- Angular position sensing
- disturbance rejection
- position estimation