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YTE - Department of Electrical and Electronics Engineering

EE 316 - Electronic Design Project

Project: P10

Metal Detector
Final Project Report 13 May 2012

Objective
Metal detectors are widely used equipments around the world for different purposes. They are used for security purposes such as finding mines in mine fields or detecting metal objects on people in airports or such buildings. They are used for archeology. Treasure hunters also use them widely to detect precious metals under soil. Even food technology benefits from metal detectors to inspect different materials in food. Our aim is to design a metal detector that rapidly responds to metal objects entering a region of 100cm2. Whats more, it should be able to detect a 1 TL coin at a distance of 10 cm. The type of metal detector we chose to accomplish this task is Beat Frequency Oscillator(BFO) type metal detector.

Group Members
Common efforts: All efforts are common. zgrhan rek 160206022 Onur nolu 160206010

EE 316 - Electronic Design Project, Metal Detector Project Final Report

YTE - Department of Electrical and Electronics Engineering

Revision History

Week-8: The oscillators consisting of JFETS are replaced with BJT oscillators due to difficulties to find JFET transistors on market. Week-9-10: The frequency of operation of the search and reference oscillators are changed from 650 kHz to around 380 kHz.

EE 316 - Electronic Design Project, Metal Detector Project Final Report

YTE - Department of Electrical and Electronics Engineering

1. Introduction
The metal detector we are designing is a BFO type metal detector. There are three important challenges in making a BFO type metal detector. 1. Detecting a metal object: In detecting a metal object, a circular coil will be used. The change in the inductance of the coil is the defining part that an object is detected. 2. Generating oscillations: Two LC oscillators are used to generate two AC signals with very close frequencies. One of the oscillators include the circular search coil which detects the metal objects. 3. Finding the difference between AC signals: A frequency mixer circuit will generate a signal consisting of the difference and sum of the frequencies the oscillators produced. A low pass filter is used to remove the high frequency component and acquire the low frequency part. Following paragraphs summarize the necessary background information for the key technologies utilized in this project.

1.1. Electronic Oscillators


Electronic oscillators are circuits those generate an oscillating voltage output at a frequency. There are many types of oscillators. They can generate sine, square, saw-tooth, triangle or even complex waveforms as outputs. They are widely used due to the huge requirement of oscillating waveforms in electronic applications. A particular type, L-C oscillator is crucial for a metal detector. An oscillator is simply an amplifier with a positive feedback.

EE 316 - Electronic Design Project, Metal Detector Project Final Report

YTE - Department of Electrical and Electronics Engineering

L-C Oscillators
An LC oscillator consists of an inductor and capacitor connected in parallel.

Suppose we charge a capacitor with a DC battery with the switch in position A. After the capacitor is fully charged, the switch moves from position A to B. Since there is no external voltage source in the left loop, the fully-charged capacitor starts acting like a source. In time, the capacitor gets discharged through the coil.This introduces a rising current inside the coil and thus an electromagnetic field.This lasts until the capacitor is fully discharged. At this point, the electromagnetic field starts to collapse, a back emf is introduced inside the coil which keeps the current flowing in the original direction.This current charges the capacitor in the reverse polarity to its original charge until the electromagnetic field collapses completely and the capacitor is fully charged. After that the capacitor again acts like a source and supplies current to inductor in the opposite direction. In an ideal system, where the circuit has no resistance, this process lasts forever and an oscillating output voltage is produced. But in practice, the resistance of circuit causes losses and that causes decays in output voltage. Eventually the output voltage is 0. To overcome this, additional voltage is applied to practical L-C oscillators to keep the output from dampening. The practical circuit of LC oscillator is similar to the circuit below. The feedback required is taken from the mid point of two capacitors.

EE 316 - Electronic Design Project, Metal Detector Project Final Report

YTE - Department of Electrical and Electronics Engineering

1.1. Inductance of a Coil Near a Metal Object


The equation of an inductance of a coil is given below. L=(0KN2A)/l where L = Inductance (H) 0=permeability of space(H/m) K=Nagaoka coefficient (changes with the geometry of the coil) N=Number of turns A=Area of the cross section of coil (m2) l=Length of coil (m) The inductance of a coil is dependent of the factors given above. As it can be seen, permeability of space that the coil is in effects the inductance. Magnetic materials in space cause the permeability of the space to change, thus changing the inductance of a coil. The inductance decreases when a metal object is nearby, thus increasing the frequency of the search oscillator circuit which will be discussed later.

1.3. Frequency Mixers


Frequency mixers are non-linear devices. They take two input signals and produce outputs at different frequencies. Usually this output is composed of the sum and difference of frequencies of inputs. Frequency shifting is necessary for some applications in signal processing, so frequency mixers basically shift the frequency of input signals to another frequency range. This process is called heterodyning.

EE 316 - Electronic Design Project, Metal Detector Project Final Report

YTE - Department of Electrical and Electronics Engineering

2. Technical Description

Figure 1. Block diagram of the metal detector.

Two identical Colpitts Oscillators are used for search and reference(local). When the search coil L1 is brought near a metal object its inductance decreases. This causes an increase in the frequency of the signal V1. This signal is mixed with the one coming from local oscillator, V2. The resulting signal, Vm includes both the sum and difference frequency components of V1 and V2.Feeding Vm to a low pass filter removes high frequency components. Remaining signal Vf is in audible range . Vf is then amplified with an audio amplifier. The amplified signal is fed into a transducer to produce sound. The needed frequency of operation for the oscillators are set around 350 kHz. The oscillators produce signals with very close frequencies. The frequency of the reference oscillator can be adjusted to set the frequencies similar to each other, or with a slight difference.

EE 316 - Electronic Design Project, Metal Detector Project Final Report

YTE - Department of Electrical and Electronics Engineering

2.1. Search Oscillator


Both search and local oscillators are Colpitts Oscillators and built with Bjt transistors. The diameter and turns of the search coil effect the inductance it provides. Our frequency of operation is meant to be around 380 kHz. But after further measurements and tests, we set both of the oscillators around 343 kHz.

The variable capacitor is used to set the circuit in conjunction with the variable local oscillator. The output of the search oscillator is a 2.5 Vp-p, 8 V mean with around 350-400kHz frequency signal. The capacitance and the resistor values are calculated according to the oscillation frequency formula of Colpitts oscillator:

f0 = 1/(2*sqrt(L*C1C2/(C1+C2))

EE 316 - Electronic Design Project, Metal Detector Project Final Report

YTE - Department of Electrical and Electronics Engineering

Substituting the values of capacitors and inductor in the above formula gives the frequency of operation around 388 kHz. But since the search coil and the reference coil must be set to same frequency, slight changes in diameter and turns of the coil will effect the frequency of operation. After testing and measuring the turns and diameter of the coil is changed and the new operation frequency is changed to 340 kHz.

2.2. Search Coil


Search coil is an important part of the metal detector. The inductance of the coil decreases near a metal object, which causes the frequency of the oscillator circuit to increase. This change in frequency is used to detect the metal objects. Radius of the coil is a critical part in design. Because increasing the radius of coil, makes the detector to be able to detect from more distance, but makes it less sensitive to smaller objects. That means that we had to find a balance between distance of detection and the size of the metal objects. The search coil denoted as L1 is meant to have around 80 uHs of inductance. Using the formula below the turns and diameter of the coil can be adjusted.

L = r2N2/(9r+10l) Where L=inductance (uH) r=radius of coil(in) l=length of coil(in) N=number of turns

It turns out that, in order to have 80H of inductance, we need around 18-19 turns of 12 cm diameter, 0.55 mm thickness enameled copper wire. After practising the circuit, we found that 12 cms of diameter didnt give enough detection distance. Thats why we wound another coil of 14cms diameter. To keep the frequency same the turn count of the coil must be lowered. After inspecting the performance of the detector, we decided to keep the turn count at same value which gave us an inductance of 105 uH. Design specifications of the coil: Number of turns: Diameter(cm): Inductance(uH): 19 14 102

EE 316 - Electronic Design Project, Metal Detector Project Final Report

YTE - Department of Electrical and Electronics Engineering

2.3. Reference Oscillator

The local oscillator(reference) is also a Colpitts type Oscillator. It is pretty much identical to search oscillator except that there is another capacitor parallel to the inductor. This is a trimmer capacitor which means that it can be adjusted. We needed a variable capacitor with around 50-500pF changing value. The best we could find was a 10-60pF. This capacitor is used to make fine adjustment of the frequency of operation. Since we had such a small interval of capacitor we sometimes changed turns of the search coil and changed the values of the capacitors used to set the frequencies to the same value. The values shown on the schematics are result of setting the frequencies equal to each other. Coupling capacitors of 82nF are used for capacitive coupling between parts of the circuit. The frequency of V2 is around 343 kHz with an adjustable interval of around +5kHz -5kHz. The amplitude of the signal is 8 V mean with 2.5 V peak to peak value.

EE 316 - Electronic Design Project, Metal Detector Project Final Report

YTE - Department of Electrical and Electronics Engineering

2.4. Frequency Mixer and Low Pass Filter


The mixer is the part of the circuit where the two oscillator signals are mixed together. Their sum and difference are produced by the mixer. The signals are capacitively coupled to the mixer to prevent dc parts from entering the mixer. In this design a mixer circuit with two BJTS is used. The inputs to the frequency mixer has 2.2 Vp-p amplitudes, 7.5V mean and around 380 kHz frequencies.

The output of the frequency mixer includes both the sum and difference of the frequencies. Thats why we need to use a low pass filter to filter out the high frequency component. A simple resistor(R13) and capacitor(C17) are used as low pass filter. Frequency of Vf changes when a metal object is near the detector coil. The amplitude of Vf is around 50-100 mV peak to peak with 0 V mean. The frequency of Vf is the difference between oscillator frequencies and that depends on the adjustment of the circuits and whether there is a metal object near or not.But generally, Vf is in audible range around 0-2000 Hz.

EE 316 - Electronic Design Project, Metal Detector Project Final Report

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YTE - Department of Electrical and Electronics Engineering

2.5. Signal Amplification and Producing Sound


The output of low pass filter, Vf, is very weak to be able to produce sound. So, before we can produce a sound effect to notify the user that a metal is detected. We need to amplify the signal. For this process, a JFET pre-amplifier and a standard LM386 Audio Amplifier is used.

As previously mentioned, the power of the signal Vf is not enough to drive a sound transducer. Thats why it is first amplified. The basic JFET pre amplifier amplifies the signal to around 1 V mean with 100mV peak to peak value. After this, the signal is fed to LM386 audio amplifier through a 10k potentiometer that adjust the gain. The output of the LM386, Va is enough to drive a small buzzer connected to the output. The gain of LM386 is maximum 20. 10 uF capacitor between legs 1 and 8 of LM386 is used to increase to gain to 200. Adjusting the potentiometer controls the volume coming out of buzzer by changing the gain from 0 to 200.

EE 316 - Electronic Design Project, Metal Detector Project Final Report

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YTE - Department of Electrical and Electronics Engineering

3. Test Results
3.1. Search Oscillator
The output of the search oscillator, V1 is measured as a sine wave with 344.3 kHz and 7.8 mean value with 3 V peak to peak voltage. This is almost similar with the calculated value.

3.2. Reference Oscillator


The output of the reference oscillator, V2 is around 343 kHz(adjustable) with 8 V mean and 2.2 V peak to peak value.

3.3. Frequency Mixer and Low Pass Filter


The inputs to the frequency mixer was V1 and V2. The output of the frequency mixer without low pass filter is not measured separately. Output of the low pass filter, Vf is a sine wave with 67 mV peak to peak value and 2.2 mV mean. The frequency of this signal is the same with the difference between oscillators. At the time of the measurement this difference was around 1kHz.These low values were expected.

3.4. Signal Amplification and Producing Sound


The input to the JFET preamplifier is Vf. The output of the pre amplifier Vp is a sine wave with 1.2 V mean and 120 mV peak to peak value. Output of the LM386 audio amplifier couldnt be retrieved with our measuring equipment. The reason for this is that, even though we didnt really need it, we used a 10 uF capacitor between pins 1-8 of LM386 to hear the buzzer sound better. This caused the gain to be very high. Because of this high gain even a slight adjustment of the volume control potentiometer caused the output signal to go very complex and unmeasurable. One other possible cause is that, we saw that when we tried to measure a part of the circuit with an oscilloscope, the sound of buzzer was considerably lowered.

LM386 Specifications Operating Supply Voltage Quiescent Current (IQ) Voltage Gain

4-12 V or 5-18V Vs=6V => max(IQ)=8mA 20-200(10 uF capacitor)

EE 316 - Electronic Design Project, Metal Detector Project Final Report

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YTE - Department of Electrical and Electronics Engineering

4. Conclusion
The type of the metal detector we designed is the simplest of all. It is easy to design, but has some drawbacks. One drawback is that, if distance of detection is increased, then the object must be bigger so that it can be detected. Aside from that, the metal detector project was a success. Even though we couldnt achieve detecting a 1 TL coin from exactly 10 cms. We got pretty close to around 7-8 cms. The metal detector is stable, which means that it doesnt respond to non-magnetic objects or doesnt change the tone of the buzzer without a reason. It detects an object entering the region of detection rapidly and notifies the user with a clear change in the sound buzzer produces. The adjustment The detector we designed is not yet ready for practical use. Coil must be wounded with proper isolating band, and then shielded with Faraday shield to reduce ground capacitance effects. Faraday shield is simply winding the coil with aluminum paper. We didnt need that because we didnt use the device for practical purposes. Also the device doesnt have any handle or box to contain the circuit. These are all for practical purposes and can be easily added after the project is finished.

EE 316 - Electronic Design Project, Metal Detector Project Final Report

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YTE - Department of Electrical and Electronics Engineering

5. Component List
Component List Audio Amplifier n-channel RF Amplifier Part Number LM386 BF256A Manufacturer National Semiconductor Fairchild Semiconductor Supplier www.national.com

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YTE - Department of Electrical and Electronics Engineering

References
1. "How Metal Detectors Work" http://electronics.howstuffworks.com/gadgets/other-gadgets/metal-detector.htm 2. Wikipedia article on "Metal Detectors" http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Metal_detector 3. Article on Metal Detectors http://www.biltek.tubitak.gov.tr/gelisim/elektronik/dosyalar/14/14.pdf 4. Metal Detector http://electronicsfreelancer.wordpress.com/2011/10/13/metal-dedektoru/ 5. Donald A. Neamen, McGraw Hill, Microelectronics Circuit Analysis and Design Third Edition, pp:1069-1078 6. Wikipedia article on Electronic Oscillator http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electronic_oscillator 7. How to Make a Metal Detector http://www.easytreasure.co.uk/bfo.htm 8. Wikipedia article on Frequency Mixer http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frequency_mixer 9. LC Oscillators http://www.electronixandmore.com/articles/oscillators.html 10. Introduction to Mixers http://michaelgellis.tripod.com/mixersin.html 11. Metal Detector http://www.bobsdata.com/metal_detector 12. Treasure Finder http://makeprojects.com/Project/Treasure-Finder/1113/1

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