incremental-encodersWhen using incremental encoders, it’s important to understand the concept of the marker pulse.  (If you missed it, check out our video comparing absolute and incremental encoders.)

Watch the video for an brief explanation of marker pulse in incremental encoders.

Incremental encoders output a square wave when the shaft is turned.  There may be several output channels, as shown in the video.  The Z channel (also called the marker channel) emits 1 pulse per rotation.

This “marker pulse” may be a certain number of degrees of the electrical cycle or a certain number of degrees of the revolution of the shaft.  The reason for the different widths of the marker is so that it’s easier for the controller to pick up the pulse.

This pulse is used a reference or home position in rotation or revolution of the shaft.

For more information about encoders, send us an email or check out the other posts in our encoder videobytes series.

marker pulse, [Video] Incremental Encoders: Marker Pulse Explained

Vikram Phadke

As a Strategic Industry Manager with SICK, Inc., Vikram is responsible for the Electronics and Solar markets. He has worked in the industrial automation field for eight years, and his principal interests are learning about innovative products and technology.

Vikram currently resides in Minneapolis, Minn., is passionate about traveling to different countries, sports, multicultural experiences, and is an avid Manchester United fan.


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