Welcome to Issue #70 


"Hola" dynamic sensing and calibration readers...we hope your business or industry is heating up and making a comeback in the new economy.  We are seeing strength in business returning across the USA, as well as in most of the major world economies.  One thing is for sure, engineers, technicians and hard-working technical folks are part of the engine making this comeback happen. Thanks to you for your efforts, and thanks for your commitment to learning each month.

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Tip of the Month: 

Use the 'Sweep Down' Function When Calibrating

Here's a remarkably simple tip that saves hours of time over the course of a month.... 

Consider using the "sweep down" function of your calibration system when calibrating your general purpose accelerometers. This starts the frequency sweep at the upper frequency limit which, coincidentally, is the most common frequency where an accelerometer can fail. If there is a problem (such as a loose transducer mount, missing silicone grease, etc.) the first measurement point will immediately fail, then the calibration operator can abort the measurement and remount the sensor. In older calibration systems, this saves 10-15 minutes of sweep time per failed sensor. In newer systems it still can save several minutes.
Technical Exchanges
Quick Links
ISO TC 108 - Mechanical vibration, shock and condition monitoring
ISO TC 108/SC 3 - Use and calibration of vibration and shock measuring instruments
ISO TC 108/SC 6 - Vibration and shock generating systems
SAVE (Formerly SAVIAC)
Previous Newsletters
Accelerometer Calibration - 'Trust But Verify'; Upcoming NIST Colloquium


How Low Can Your DVM Go?; Non-Contact Displacement Sensor Calibration
Select Newsletter Articles 
by Topic
PCB Group Companies
Methods for Field Calibration of Accelerometers
& Vibration Transducers 
Nothing is more frustrating than making an on-site vibration measurement and having the data just not "look right." (The test could be complex - like a large-scale modal survey on an aerospace structure - or hard-wired to automate like the 4-20 ma current loop output accelerometer running into a machine supervisory control system.) Regardless, when the data is looking sour, it is extremely helpful to get back to a known output with a field method of vibration calibration or verification. This month we will look at three quick and easy methods...
Giant Crystal Cave Comes to Light
(Excerpted from National Geographic News)
Buried a thousand feet (300 meters) below Naica mountain in the Chihuahuan Desert, a cave was discovered by two miners excavating a new tunnel for the Industrias Peņoles company. The cave contains some of the largest natural crystals ever found: translucent gypsum beams measuring up to 36 feet (11 meters) long and weighing up to 55 tons...

  Click to read full article

UC Structural Dynamics Research Lab (UC-SDRL) is offering 'Experimental Techniques' Seminar Series  

The University of Cincinnati, Structural Dynamics Research Lab (UC-SDRL) is again offering its Experimental Techniques Seminar SeriesThese are the longest running seminars in the area of experimental modal analysis. 


Each three-day seminar includes lectures and demonstrations on basic theory and concepts covering the latest methods used by practitioners. Sufficient background and detail is provided so that the technical issues and limitations of more advanced topics can be well-understood by users.


Each seminar includes complete notes and reference materials, along with lunch and snacks at a cost of $1300.  Complete information concerning lecture topics for each seminar along with registration information can be found at: 
Upcoming seminars include:
  • Structural Measurements Seminar  
    •  August 14-16, 2013  
  • Modal Analysis Seminar   
    • August 19-21, 2013


Thanks for joining us for another issue of "Dynamic Sensors & Calibration Tips." As always, please, speak up and let us know what you like. We appreciate all feedback: positive, critical or otherwise. Take care!




Mike Lally signature
Michael J. Lally
The Modal Shop
A PCB Group Company