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Photoelectric Angle Encoder


Research and Development of the Photoelectric Shaft Angle Absolute Encoders

Tech Area / Field

  • INS-MEA/Measuring Instruments/Instrumentation

3 Approved without Funding

Registration date

Leading Institute
Institute of Radiophysics and Electronics / Special Design Center, Armenia, Ashtarak


  • University of Tokyo / School of Engineering, Japan, Tokyo

Project summary

SKB was founded as a spin-off of the automation department of the Institute of Radio-Physics and Electronics (IRPhE) of the Academy of Sciences of Armenia. It continued the R&D of absolute shaft-angle encoders started in early 70s. Over the years SKB has developed a proprietary family of encoders ranging from lower end 8-10-bit incremental encoders to higher-end 17-22-bit (single-turn) absolute encoders. More than 50 invention certificates and patents are obtained by SKB research staff pertaining to encoding principles, subassemblies, production technology, etc.

Following the loss of customers due to disintegration of the Soviet Union, SKB is facing the dilemma of switching its products and competencies to industrial markets. SKB encoders have competitive basic technical specifications SKB encoders are smaller, lighter but more precise and rugged than industrial analogues developed by leading producers. In part this is due to the proprietary know-how, which permits to achieve given resolution through technically simpler configuration of the most essential parts of the encoder.. However, they were specifically designed for military purposes and neither fit currently accepted industrial standards, nor are they fit for mass production. Resolution of these problems requires additional research and development, as detailed further in the text. This includes research in a number of issues regarding encoder parameter optimisation techniques, encoder structure, assembly methods, methods and means of quality control automation, etc. In order to successfully complete this project, the research and engineering team of SKB intends to implement ideas and theoretical approaches accumulated during the recent years which have not been developed due to lack of investments.

Following are the specific expected results of the project:

- methods of optimisation of tolerance ranges for manufacture of encoder units according to given output features (Applied Research);

- development of method and devices for determination of parameters of the measuring and indicator code masks (Applied Research);

- development of method and devices for centering these masks according to encoder signals (Applied Research);

- development of quality control method for opto-mechanical unit of encoder depending on requested encoder parameters (Applied Research / Technology Development);

- development of methods and devices for automated certification of encoders with reading and registering of accuracy of encoders in the whole range of angular displacements (Technology Development / Technology Demonstration).

The successful completion of the Project will permit to

- launch a series of low-cost absolute encoders with competitive characteristics into production,

- develop more complex devices and industrial systems based on absolute encoders (inclinometers, multi-axis platforms, liquid level measurement systems, etc.).


The International Science and Technology Center (ISTC) is an intergovernmental organization connecting scientists from Kazakhstan, Armenia, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Georgia with their peers and research organizations in the EU, Japan, Republic of Korea, Norway and the United States.


ISTC facilitates international science projects and assists the global scientific and business community to source and engage with CIS and Georgian institutes that develop or possess an excellence of scientific know-how.

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