18-Bit Optical Encoder with SPI and Serial/Parallel and FlexCount® Outputs

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iC-LNB is an optoelectronic encoder IC for absolute linear and angle measuring systems, such as glass scales and encoders. Photodiodes, amplifiers, and comparators, the entire signal conditioning unit, and interfaces for position data output have been monolithically integrated into the device.


 • Absoluteand incremental position sensors
 • Linear scales and rotary encoders
 • Motion control

An integrated LED current control with a driver stage allows a transmitting LED to be directly connected (e.g. iC-SN85). The optical receive power is kept constant by the control unit, regardless of temperature and aging effects. The receive power setpoint can be programmed. Should the LED current control exit its operating range, this is indicated at the error message output (end-of-life alarm at pin ERR).

The photocurrent offset and photocurrent amplitude of the analog sine/cosine signals can be calibrated. These calibrated voltage signals are lead out to pins PSIN, NSIN, PCOS, and NCOS and are used by the integrated 8-bit vector-tracking interpolation circuit.

iC-LNB synchronizes the interpolator and singleturn data to form a contiguous Gray-coded position data word. 16 parallel ports, a scalable shift-register, the SPI interface, as well as incremental A/B/Z signals are available for data output. By help of the unique FlexCount® circuit any angle resolution between 1 to 218 angle steps per revolution can be preset for the incremental signals and the absolute position value.

After startup iC-LNB is configured using the SPI interface. To make connection to a 3.3 V microcontroller easier, all digital I/O ports, including the SPI, can be run on 3.3 V.

Symmetry Electronics (and its e-commerce division: SemiconductorStore.com) is an authorized iC-Haus distributor.


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System-on-chip design for excellent reliability
Very compact array size
Leading/trailing sampling of 10 binary tracks pitched at 400 m
Analog sine/cosine scanning with enlarged photodiodes and signal conditioning
Differential sine/cosine outputs with 1024 CPR and 500 mVpk
Absolute resolution of up to 18 bits by fast 8-bit vector-tracking interpolation
Unique FlexCount circuit: freely selectable resolution for absolute and incremental data
Incremental quadrature outputs with 1 to 65,536 CPR and programmable index signal
Scalable shift-register for 12 to 18 bits and 1 s cycles at 16 MHz clock frequency
Parallel data output of 16 bits in Gray code
Permanent RAM monitoring by parity bits
LED illumination control (mean or sin/cos square) by 50 mA high-side current source
Alarm indication for configuration and illumination error (end of life)
Undervoltage detection
3.3 V-compatible SPI and I/O ports for configuration and data
4 V to 5.5 V single supply operation
Operating temperature range of 40 C to 110 C
Small outline, optoBGA and optoQFN packages for SMT
Available accessories: LED and code discs (1024 CPR)

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