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Inductive and eddy current type sensors are widely used in active magnetic bearing (AMB) systems for measuring the position of the levitated body. State-ofthe- art sensors provide a good robustness but, quite often, an unsatisfactory cost-efficiency. Cost-efficiency, however, is a key issue for industrial AMB systems, especially for volume applications. While it is evident that cost reduction programs must consider every component in an AMB system, this paper describes a patented1 approach which specially focuses on the sensor technology, where a substantial potential for cost reductions is expected. Differing from the known and ongoing approach to totally abandon the integration of sensors and to implement a so-called self-sensing AMB system [2] – most often at the expense of a loss of system robustness and an increase in controller complexity – a new type of radial sensors based on a printed circuit board (PCB) with printed coils as a sensing element is introduced. This design features minimum space requirement, high sensing quality and low production costs at the same time.

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Booktitle: Proceedings of ISMB9