Meteorological Instrument Performance Characteristics

Instrument Performance Characteristics » Definitions and Background

Some terminology will be important to know as we proceed through the lesson. Based on what you know about instrumentation, complete the following set of questions.

Question

Select the term that best matches each definition.

a) The range of the measurand for which the sensor produces valid output.
Please make a selection.
b) The difference between the highest and lowest values in the measurement range.
Please make a selection.
c) The smallest difference between two measurands that results in distinguishable outputs from the sensor.
Please make a selection.
d) The change in sensor output for unit change in the input.
Please make a selection.
e) The degree to which the static sensitivity is constant over the range of measurements.
Please make a selection.
f) The degree to which the output remains the same when the same measurand is sensed at different times.
Please make a selection.
g) Given by 𝜏, the time it takes for an instrument to reach 63.2% (100 (1-e-1)) of the response to a step input of first-order.
Please make a selection.
h) A condition affecting the output that depends on whether the input is increasing or decreasing.
Please make a selection.
i) The smallest measurand that produces an output distinct from that produced by a measurand of zero.
Please make a selection.

The correct answers are shown above.

Please make a selection.

This lesson presents the science behind many of the characteristics that appear in data sheets such as the previously shown example. Such specifications are usually the starting point for understanding performance of a sensor.

A scientist tests the functionality of sensors on an Integrated Surface Flux tower during a field campaign in Portugal.

A scientist tests the functionality of sensors on an Integrated Surface Flux tower during a field campaign in Portugal. Image from NCAR/EOL.