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Submitted by

Submitted to

Yash Raj Saxena

Mr. Rajneesh Singh


Metal Detectors
Types of Metal Detectors
Beat Frequency Oscillation
Very low Frequency
Pulse Induction
Uses of Metal Detectors

Name: Yash Raj Saxena
School: Neerja Modi School

Class: XII A

This is to certify that Yash Raj Saxena has successfully

prepared the report on the project entitled Metal Detectors.
The report is found worthy of acceptance as the final project for
the subject Physics of Class XII.
He has prepared the report under my guidance.

Mr. Rajneesh Singh

(Physics Practical Teacher)

Yash Raj Saxena


I would like to express my special thanks of gratitude to our
principal Mrs. Indu Dubey as well as my teacher Mr. Rajneesh
Singh who gave me the golden opportunity to do this wonderful
project on the topic Metal Detectors, which also helped me
in doing a lot of research and I came to know about so many
new things and I am really thankful to them.

Secondly, I would also like to thank my parents and friends who

helped me a lot in finalizing this project within the limited time

Metal Detectors
A metal detector is an electronic instrument which detects the presence
of metal nearby. Metal detectors are useful for finding metal inclusions
hidden within objects, or metal objects buried underground. They often
consist of a handheld unit with a sensor probe which can be swept over
the ground or other objects. If the sensor comes near a piece of metal this
is indicated by a changing tone in earphones, or a needle moving on an
indicator. Usually the device gives some indication of distance; the closer
the metal is, the higher the tone in the earphone or the higher the needle
goes. Another common type are stationary "walk through" metal


for security

screening at





courthouses, and airports to detect concealed metal weapons on a

person's body.

The simplest form of a metal detector consists of an oscillator producing










alternating magnetic field. If a piece of electrically conductive metal is

close to the coil, eddy currents will be induced in the metal, and this
produces a magnetic field of its own. If another coil is used to measure
the magnetic field (acting as a magnetometer), the change in the
magnetic field due to the metallic object can be detected.

Types of Metal Detectors

Beat Frequency Oscillation
A beat frequency oscillation, or BFO, type of metal detector is the most
simple and inexpensive design. For this reason, BFO metal detectors are
popular with beginners. Like a VLF detector, this type uses two separate
wire coils for detection. An oscillator creates a constant signal at a set
frequency, which is emitted by one of the coils. The second coil detects
the interference of this frequency caused by metal objects, which results
in a changing audio tone.
The BFO detector operates similarly to the VLF model but lacks the
filtering and fine-tuning ability of the latter design. This makes the BFO
detector more prone to mistakes and interference and less able to
differentiate between trash and treasure.

Very Low Frequency

A very low frequency, or VLF, metal detector is the most commonly used
type due to its wide range of uses. With a VLF detector, a variety of
different metals can be detected. This type of detector operates using two
round coils of wire. The coil on the outside is the transmitter. This part

emits a low-frequency magnetic field onto the ground. A metal object

under the dirt causes this field to be reflected. A separate inside coil is the
receiver. This second coil amplifies any magnetic reflections causes by a
hidden object. If these signal reflections are present, an audio tone is
In addition to these two coils, a VLF metal detector includes an electronic
circuit used to filter the signal from the receiver. This circuit is essentially
a "tuner" that allows the user to ignore certain levels of signal and focus
only on the desired range. Because different types of metal reflect
different signals, a treasure hunter can "tune out" signals from aluminium
and steel and focus on valuables such as gold and silver.

Pulse Induction
The pulse induction, or PI, type of metal detector is a more specialized
type of unit most commonly used by treasure hunters searching for items
deep under the surface. Large versions of PI detectors are also commonly
used at security checkpoints to detect weapons.
A PI detector usually uses only one coil. As with VLF types, a coil sends
out a magnetic field into the ground, any metal underground reflects this
signal. Instead of using a separate coil for detection, however, a PI unit
quickly switches modes to "listen" for the reflected signal. Using this
timed pulse method, the device can discriminate between signals it has
sent and stray signals from the surrounding area. This makes PI detectors
more accurate but also more expensive.

Beat Frequency Oscillator Type

Very Low Frequency Type

Pulse Induction Type

Uses of Metal Detectors

Treasure Hunting

Different types of treasure hunting that use metal detector technology

include "coin shooting" or coin hunting, prospecting for gold and/or silver,
historical artifact hunting, and beach combing for valuables lost on the
beach. Serious coin and relic hunters will do an enormous amount of
research beforehand to determine where specific, potentially valuable
sites are located. The depth to which a metal detector can pinpoint a
buried metal object depends largely on the strength (and expense) of the
model. The typical amateur treasure-hunting metal detector can only
detect metal objects one or two feet below the surface.

Airport and Building Security

Metal detectors are used for airport and building security to determine
whether guns, knives, or other weapons are being transported onto
aircraft or into public buildings. The technology and efficiency of a
security metal detector is much more advanced than that of an amateur
treasure-hunting detector. There are two types of security metal
detectors: the walk-through detector, and the wand detector.

Land Mine Detection

The military has used metal detection to pinpoint buried land mines since
World War I. Of the two types of landmines used in warfare, antipersonnel
and antitank, antipersonnel mines are harder for metal detectors to locate
because they are often made of plastic. Both types of mines are typically
buried close to the surface, making detection of metal-based mines
relatively easy, though intensely nerve-wracking, as the slightest contact
with a mine will easily detonate it.

Construction Industry
Metal detectors are also used in the construction industry to locate steel
reinforcement bars embedded in concrete, and to pinpoint metal pipes
and wires in floors and walls. This is useful in avoiding unnecessary
damage when replacing plumbing or wiring in a building or house. Some
models of metal detector used for construction industry purposes bear a
resemblance to the wand detector used for security purposes, while
others more closely resemble those used for treasure hunting.

How stuff