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Pressure sensor with I�C communication ? possibilities and boundary conditions

I�C was designed to communicate over short distances between printed circuit boards and is a simple, 8-bit serial data bus. For the time being, it isn’t only PCB-mountable pressure sensors that use the I�C signal for data transfer, but additionally pressure sensors remote from customer electronics.
Remote sensors will often have the benefit of being less sensitive to contaminated or aggressive media and being able to measure directly at the procedure. In the case of sensors mounted directly on the circuit board, the sensor element is, oftentimes, exposed right to the medium. With remote sensors, steel or ceramic generally serve because the wetted surface.
I�C circuit
The I�C bus, alongside both supply lines, requires only two further lines:
SCL (serial clock line)
SDA (serial data line)
Additional possibilities through I�C
The I�C bus is a well-known standard in electronics, offering additional possibilities for communication with a pressure sensor than with an analogue signal:
In the data protocol, in addition to the pressure value, a temperature value and diagnostic information (for instance an integrity test of the data transfer) could be transmitted via a status byte.
Several pressure sensors can be linked to a bus line as ?slaves? to the customer electronics that functions as a ?master?.
On the customer side, in contrast to the usage of pressure sensors with analogue signals, the analogue-to-digital conversion of the pressure value for further signal processing is unnecessary since the pressure value is already present in digital form. This contributes to faster and easier signal processing.
The electronics for communication could be constructed with standard components easily available on the market.
Often, I�C signal pressure sensors may also be optimised to consume less energy, making them ideal for battery-powered applications. In the WIKA portfolio, for example, this applies to the MPR-1 pressure sensor module.
Boundary conditions with the use of I�C
Since I�C is not a fieldbus, long wire lengths aren’t recommended. The utmost wire length depends, in detail, on the operating environment and the corresponding disturbing influences. I�C communication is best used in projects where in fact the pressure sensor or the pressure sensor module is built-into the customer product and therefore protected against external influences. It should also be noted that with any digitally processed signal, the response time because of discrete-time sampling will undoubtedly be somewhat slower than for an analogue, continuous signal.
Note
Your contact person will be happy to help you with any further questions on digital interfaces.
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