Syllabus For The Subject Electrical Measurements & Instrumentation



Part 1 Principles of measurement

1 Introduction to measurement

Measurement units

Measurement system applications

Elements of a measurement system

Choosing appropriate measuring instruments


2 Instrument types and performance characteristics

Review of instrument types

Active and passive instruments

Null-type and deflection-type instruments

Analogue and digital instruments

Indicating instruments and instruments with a signal output

Smart and non-smart instruments

Static characteristics of instruments

Accuracy and inaccuracy



Range or span


Sensitivity of disturbance

Hysteresis effects

Dead space

Dynamic characteristics of instruments

Zero order instrument

First order instrument

 Second order instrument

Necessity for calibration

Self-test questions


3 Errors during the measurement process


Sources of systematic error

Errors due to environmental inputs

Wear in instrument components

Connecting leads

Reduction of systematic errors

Careful instrument design

Method of opposing inputs

High-gain feedback


Manual correction of output reading

Intelligent instruments

Quantification of systematic errors

Random errors

Statistical analysis of measurements subject to random errors

Graphical data analysis techniques-frequency


Aggregation of measurement system errors

Combined effect of systematic and random errors

Aggregation of errors from separate measurement

System components

Total error when combining multiple measurements

Self-test questions

References and further reading


4 Calibration of measuring sensors and instruments

Principles of calibration

Control of calibration environment

Calibration chain and traceability

Calibration records

References and further reading


5 Measurement noise and signal processing

Sources of measurement noise

Inductive coupling

Capacitive coupling

Noise due to multiple earths

Noise in the form of voltage transient

Thermoelectric potentials

Shot noise

Electrochemical potentials

Techniques for reducing measurement noise

Location and design of signal wires



Other techniques

Introduction to signal processing

Analogue signal filtering

Passive analogue filters

Active analogue filters

Other analogue signal processing operations

Signal amplification

Signal attenuation

Differential amplification

Signal linearization

Bias removal

Signal integration

Voltage follower

Voltage comparator

Phase-sensitive detector

Lock-in amplifier

Signal addition

Signal multiplication

Digital signal processing

Signal sampling

Sample and hold circuit

Analogue-to-do-digital converters

Digital-to-analogue conversion

Digital filtering


Other digital signal processing operations

References and further reading


6 Electrical indicating and test instruments

Digital meters

Voltage-to-time conversion digital voltmeter

Potentiometric digital voltmeter

Dual-slope integration digital voltmeter

Voltage-to-frequency conversion digital voltmeter

Digital millimeter

Analogue meters

Moving-coil meters

Moving –iron meter

Electrodynamics meters

Clamp-on meters

Analogue multimeter

Measuring high-frequency signals

Thermocouple meter

Electronic analogue voltmeters

Calculation of meter outputs for non-standard


Cathode ray oscilloscope

Cathode ray tube


Single-ended input

Differential input

Differential input  

Timebase circuit

Vertical sensitivity control

Display position control

Digital storage oscilloscopes

References and further reading


7 Variable conversion elements

Bridge circuits

Null-type, d.c. bridge

Deflection-type d.c. bridge

Error analysis

A.c bridges

Resistance measurement

D.c bridge circuit

Voltmeter-ammeter method

Resistance-substitution method

Use of the digital voltmeter to measure resistance

The ohmmeter

Codes for resistor values

Inductance measurement

Capacitance measurement

Alphanumeric codes for capacitor values

Current measurement

Frequency measurement

Digital counter-timers

Phase-locked loop

Cathode ray oscilloscope

The wien bridge

Phase measurement

Electronic counter-timer

X-Y plotter


Phase-sensitive detector

Self-test questions

References and further reading


8 Signal transmission

Electrical transmission

Transmission as varying voltages

Current loop transmission

Transmission using an a.c. carrier

Pneumatic transmission

Fibre-optic transmission

Principles of fibre optics

Transmission characteristics

Multiplexing schemes

Optical wireless telemetry

Radio telemetry

Digital transmission protocols

References and further reading


9 Digital computation and intelligent devices

Principles of digital computation

Computer operation


Practical considerations in adding computers to

Measurement systems

Intelligent devices

Intelligent instruments

Smart sensors

Smart transmitters

Communication with intelligent devices

Computation in intelligent devices

Future trends in intelligent devices

Self-test questions

References and further reading


10 Instrumentation/computer networks


Serial communication lines

Asynchronous transmission

Parallel data bus

Local area networks

Star networks

Ring and bus networks



Digital fieldbuses

Communication protocols for very large systems

Protocol standardization

Future development of networks

References and further reading


11 Display, recording and presentation of measurement data

Display of measurement signals

Electronic output displays

Computer monitor displays

Recording of measurement data

Mechanical chart recorders

Ultra-violet recorders

Fibre-optic recorders

Hybrid chart recorders

Magnetic tape recorders

Digital recorders

Storage oscilloscopes

Presentation of data

Tabular data presentation

Graphical presentation of data

Self-test questions

References and further reading


12 Measurement reliability and safety systems


Principles of reliability

Laws of reliability in complex systems

Improving measurement system reliability

Software systems

Introduction to safety systems

Operation of safety systems

Design of a safety system

Self-test questions

References and further reading


Part-2 Measurement sensors and instruments

13 Sensor technologies

Capacitive and resistive sensors

Magnetic sensors

Half –effect sensors

Piezoelectric transducers

Strain gauges

Piezoresistive sensors

Strain gauges

Piezoresistive sensors

Optical sensors

Optical sensors    

Intrinsic sensors

Extrinsic sensors

Distributed sensors

Ultrasonic transducers

Transmission speed

Direction of travel of ultrasound waves

Directionality of ultrasound waves

Relationship between wavelength, frequency and

Directionality of ultrasound waves

Attenuation of ultrasound waves

Ultrasound as a range sensor

Use of ultrasound in tracking 3D object motion

Effect of noise in ultrasonic measurement systems

Exploiting Doppler shift in ultrasound transmission

Ultrasonic imaging

Nuclear sensors

Micro sensors

References and further reading


14 Temperature measurement

Principles of temperature measurement

Thermoelectric effect sensors

Thermocouple tables

Non-zero reference junction temperature

Thermocouple protection

Thermocouple manufacture

The thermopile

Digital thermometer

The continuous thermocouple

Varying resistance devices

Resistance thermometers   


Semiconductor devices

Radiation thermometers

Optical pyrometers

Radiation pyrometers


Thermal expansion methods

Liquid-in-glass thermometers

Bimetallic thermometer

Pressure thermometers

Quartz thermometers

Fibre-optic temperature sensors

Acoustic thermometers

Colour indicators

Change of state of materials

Intelligent temperature-measuring instruments  

Choice between temperature transducers

Self-test questions

References and further reading


15 Pressure measurement


Capacitive pressure sensor

Fibre-optic pressure sensors


Bourdon tube


Resonant-wire devices

Dead-weight gauge

Special measurement devices for low pressures

High-pressure measurement

Intelligent pressure transducers

Selection of pressure sensors


16 Flow measurements

Mass flow rate

Conveyor-based methods

Coriolis flow meter

Thermal mass flow measurement

Joint measurement of volume flow rate and fluid


Volume flow rate

Differential pressure meters

Variable area flow meters

Positive displacement flowmeters

Turbine meters

Electromagnetic flowmeters

Vortex-shedding flowmeters

Ultrasonic flow meters

Other types of flow meter for measuring volume

Flow rate

Intelligent flow meters 

Choice between flow meters for particular applications

References and further reading


17 Level measurement


Float systems

Pressure-measuring devices

Capacitive devices

Ultrasonic level gauge

Radar methods

Radiation methods

Other techniques

Vibrating level sensor

Hot-wire elements/carbon resistor elements

Laser methods

Fibre-optic level sensors


Intelligent level-measuring instruments

Choice between different level sensors

References and further reading


18 Mass force and torque measurement

Mass measurement

Electronic load cell

Pneumatic/hydraulic load cells

Intelligent load cells

Mass-balance instruments

Spring balance

Force measurement

Use of accelerometers

Vibrating wire sensor

Torque measurement

Reaction forces in shaft bearings

Prony brake

Measurement of induced strain

Optical torque measurement


19 Translational motion transducers


The resistive potentiometer

Linear variable differential transformer

Variable capacitance transducers

Variable inductance transducers

Strain gauge

Piezoelectric transducers

Nozzle flapper

Other methods of measuring small displacements

Measurement of large displacements

Proximity sensors

Selection of translational measurement transducers


Differentiation of displacement measurements

Integration of the output of an accelerometer

Conversion to rotational velocity


Selection of accelerometers


Nature of vibration

Vibration measurement




20 Rotational motion transducers

Rotational displacement

Circular and helical potentiometers

Rotational differential transformer

Incremental shaft encoders

Coded-disc shaft encoders

The resolver

The synchro

The induction potentiometer

The rotary inductosyn


Choice between rotational displacement transducers

Rotational velocity

Digital tachometers

Stroboscopic methods

Analogue tachometers

Mechanical flyball

The rate gyroscope

Differentiation of angular displacement measurements

Integration of the output from an accelerometer

Choice between rotational velocity transducers

Measurement of rotational velocity transducers

Measurement of rotational acceleration

References and further reading


21 Summary of other measurements

Dimensions measurement

Rules and tapes



Gauge blocks and length bars

Height and depth measurement

Angle measurement

Flatness measurement

Volume measurement

Viscosity measurement

Capillary and tube viscometers

Falling body viscometer

Rotational viscometers

Moisture measurement

Industrial moisture measurement techniques

Laboratory techniques for moisture measurement

Humidity measurement

Sound measurement

pH measurement

The glass electrode

Other methods of pH measurement

Gas sensing and analysis

Catalytic sensors

Paper tape sensors

Liquid electrolyte electrochemical cells

Solid –state electrochemical cells

Catalytic gate FETs

Semiconductor sensors

Organic sensors

Piezoelectric devices

Infra-red absorption

Mass spectrometers

Gas chromatography

References and further reading 






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