SHE Level 5
SCQF Credit Points 15.00
ECTS Credit Points 7.50
Module Code MMH626814
Module Leader Peter Wallace
School School of Computing, Engineering and Built Environment
Subject Instrumentation, Control & Analytical Sciences
  • A (September start)
  • B (January start)
  • C (May start)

Summary of Content

This module will provide the student with a detailed understanding of the treatment of signals obtained from primary sensing elements. This will include signal conditioning processes in the analogue domain. The nature of the discrete signal after capture, treatment of uncertainties and model fitting techniques. Practical data acquisition systems will be introduced using the NI LabVIEW platform.


-360b7 Example measurement systems drawn from; Temperature, strain, force, level, pressure, flow To illustrate design aims including; Linearisation, suppression of environmental effects, noise reduction, sensor optimisation. Loading errors -360b7 Advanced Measurement Topics; Calibration, traceablility, standards, GUM, error propagation. -360b7 Discrete signals; FFT, windowing, filtering b7 Modelling of Measurement Systems; loading errors, transfer functions, linear and non-linear LS fitting. b7 Introduction to data acquisition systems via LabVIEW

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module the student should be able to:1. Knowledge of LabVIEW and the ability to create a basic LabVIEW measurement application.2. The ability to critically appraise the range of signal conditioning techniques applicable to a specific measurement tasks3. Adopt a generalised approach to the synthesis and analysis of measurement systems.4. The ability to apply a range of time and frequency domain analysis techniques to acquired data.5. The ability to critically evaluate the reliability of measured data in terms of uncertainty theory.6. The ability to critically evaluate the validity of a model in comparison to data.

Teaching / Learning Strategy

The module is available to FT students in trimester A only The module is available to DL students, by arrangement with the Programme Coordinator, in trimesters A,B&C. Full Time Students will be provided with materials via GCU learn, which will be supported by lectures, live of pro-recorded, as well as live tutorials. Much of the class contact will be lab based, revolving around the development of practical signal conditioning and data acquisition systems using the LabVIEW platform, which will be introduced to students in this module. Students will have the opportunity to install afull copy of the package on their personal equipment for private study. Distance Learning Students will be provided with an electronic study pack which will cover the syllabus material. The module content will be delivered through a combination of notes, AV lectures, tutorials and practical exercises. In addition the students will be provided with a self-contained practical introduction to LabVIEW programming. This will permit them to run simulations illustrating course concepts as well as to tackle data acquisition and analysis tasks using real data. In order to achieve this, the students will be provided with a USB signal interfacing/data acquisition device as well as sensors, such as temperature ICs and thermocouples. Tutors will be available for consultation via GCU Learn, e-mail and VoIP. For maximum flexibility the DL T&L strategy is built around asynchronous delivery. However, where convenient, DL students will be invited to join the FT cohort for tutorials and similar group activities.

Indicative Reading

-360b7 Principles of Measurement Systems, J.P. Bentley, 2005, 4th Edition, Longman. ISBN-10: 0130430285 b7 Measurement Systems- Application and Design,E.O. Doebelin, 2003, 5th Edition, McGraw-Hill International, ISBN 0-07-1194657 b7 Introduction to Instrumentation and Measurements, Third EditionRobert B. Northrop, University of Connecticut, Storrs, USA June 2014: 254 x 178: 927pp Hb: 978-1-4665-9677-1: b7 Measurement Systems and Sensors(2nd Ed pending), Waldemar Nawrocki, Artech House b7 An Introduction to Uncertainty in Measurement, L Kirkup and B Frenkel, 2006, Cambridge University Press, ISBN 978 0 521 60579 3 b7 Sensor Systems for Environmental Monitoring , M.Campbell (Ed), 1997, Vols. 1 and 2, Blackie Academic &Professional. ISBN 0-7514-0267-2

Transferrable Skills

A range of transferable skills will be developed in this module: 1. Practical Skills: manipulative, observational, recording. 2. Communication Skills:written, oral, aural, ICT (Word, Excel and Powerpoint). 3. Judgemental Skills: critical thinking, appraisal. 4. Problem Solving Skills: analytical. 5. General Skills: safety awareness, interpersonal.

Module Structure

Activity Total Hours
Assessment (FT) 24.00
Independent Learning (FDL) 60.00
Practicals (FT) 36.00
Tutorials (FT) 6.00
Lectures (FT) 24.00

Assessment Methods

Component Duration Weighting Threshold Description
Course Work 01 n/a 50.00 45% Report on data acquisition exercise.
Course Work 02 n/a 50.00 45% Class test (electronic)