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Piezoelectric Accelerometers
by f3lix-tutorial

the extensive knowledge base on
piezoelectric accelerometers brings you closer to the world of vibration sensors.

This tutorial is to pass on the basic knowledge about piezoelectric accelerometers and related know-how. It is a practical tool for the training of newcomers to the field of piezoelectric vibration sensors.

You will learn how a piezoelectric accelerometer works, what is piezoelectricity, how to design a vibration sensor, and what the typical sensor characteristics are.

I would like to share with you a part of my 35 years of professional experience in the field of vibration, piezoelectricity and accelerometers.

The Chapters

Understand Piezoelectric Vibration Sensors in 5 chapters

​We start with a look at some basics of the physics of motion to understand the common vibration representations: Displacement, velocity and acceleration and their mutual dependency.

There is also an excursion into vibration analysis to explain the representation of a frequency spectrum and what is a Fast Fourier Transform FFT.

Sine cuves to symbolise the tutorial about acceleration, velocity and displacement
Image shows a weight stone on a piezoelectric element

What is electric charge? Here you will find an answer.

The piezo effect is explained by a video and a step by step introduction into the function of piezo materials: Single crystals and piezo ceramics. Followed by a detailed explanation of the piezoelectric constants and a review of the most important material characteristics.

The basic physical function and a step by step assembly procedure of an accelerometer. Explanation of the different functional modes (compression, shear, etc.) and a few thoughts on parts design.

Concluding by a large section on EMI protection and signal conditioners, charge amplifier and IEPE (integrated electronics piezo-electric)

The picture shows an accelerometer with opened cover
Image showing a spring-mass oscillator and its frequency response curve

The most important properties and characteristics of the piezoelectric accelerometer are explained here.

You will find detailed explanations on properties related to signal magnitude and temperature but the main focus is on frequency response characteristics and resonance.

5. Disturbing Factors

Still under construction

"Under construction" image. Image source:

For direct access please use the interactive site map

Profit from this Tutorial

         follow the indicated path, which leads logically trough all subjects.

This course is particularly thought for persons who do not have a technical background. Nevertheless to understand the subject we will need to look in some physics. I tried my best to make the explanations as easy as possible.

You don't need to remember everything but try to work yourself along the indicated path.

There are two paths leading trough all chapters:

If you don't have a distinct technical background the green path is perfect for you. It is leading logically trough all subjects and touching a basic level of understanding.

To navigate along the green path just use the green  CONTINUE   buttons.

In some places there is a yellow path going to some deeper level. If green is "cold coffee" for you then the yellow path and red pages might be more suitable for you.

Just follow the yellow  CONTINUE  buttons.

The red pages contain some more mathematical information.

Just use the   RED PAGE   button.

Under this sign              you will find additional information.

      indicates an interactive picture.

Symbol for interactive image
Trigger_Button to open additional information

You can view this website with your smartphone.

For full functionality however, a large screen is recommended.

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