Current sensing is a fundamental requirement in many electronics applications. Linear Technology has this application note on collection of current sensing circuits that have been compiled from different other documents.
Tag Archives: current sensor
This recently posted instructable describes a home electricity monitor with Cloud support that saves the measurements into a Google Drive spreadsheet. The project uses Arduino Yun microcontroller board along with a current transformer for sensing current in the mains live wire. The power monitoring is wireless through Wifi, allowing continuous monitoring from a PC or phone and permanent storage on the Cloud.
In the first part of this discussion, the features of ACS712 device were briefly discussed. Now we will use that theory to implement the ACS712 sensor to make a simple DC current meter. The analog output voltage from the sensor is measured through an ADC channel of the PIC16F1847 microcontroller. A voltage to current conversion equation will be derived and implemented in the firmware of the PIC microcontroller and the actual load current will be displayed on a character LCD.
Sensing and controlling current flow is a fundamental requirement in a wide variety of applications including, over-current protection circuits, battery chargers, switching mode power supplies, digital watt meters, programmable current sources, etc. One of the simplest techniques of sensing current is to place a small value resistance (also known as Shunt resistor) in between the load and the ground and measure the voltage drop across it, which in fact, is proportional to the current flowing through it. Whereas this technique is easy and straightforward to implement, it may not be very precise because the value of the shunt resistor slightly varies with its temperature, which in fact is not constant because of the Joule heating. Besides, this simple technique does not provide an isolation between the load and current sensing unit, which is desirable in applications involving high voltage loads. Today, we will talk about Allegro ACS712 device which provides an economical and precise way of sensing AC and DC currents based on Hall-effect. This discussion is divided into two parts. The first part will provide a brief overview of the ACS712 sensor and its characteristics. In the second part, a test experiment will be carried out to interface the sensor with a PIC microcontroller to measure a dc current.