Oscillators operate like electronic pendulums vibrating in a process known as piezoelectricity to provide the impetus for radio frequencies and timekeeping devices. They are manufactured to the highest specifications by companies such as EuroQuartz whose products are used for a multitude of applications in a variety of industries.
One of the most well-known uses is in clocks and watches. Keeping reliable, precise time involves the use of a quartz oscillator. Quartz (silica tetroxide) was first incorporated into the mechanism of a clock in 1927 although its use didn’t become commercially widespread until the closing decades of the twentieth century. The precisely cut quartz component leads to a much greater stability enabling an accuracy in measurement of time of 0.01% compared to 1% in the non-quartz version. Through the use of quartz a stopwatch can register time as narrowly as one hundredth of a second. Timing devices and gauges are invaluable in a range of different industries.
Computer systems and microprocessors in PCs and laptops rely on the accuracy of quartz components for the intricate timing and synchronisation of programs. Some are specifically for WiFi. Quartz timing devices also appear in digital cameras, telephones, televisions, music synthesisers and video games systems. Others are specifically designed for MP4 players. There are even versions specifically for use in budget-priced, mass produced products. Navigational aids such as Global Positioning Satellite (GPS) systems and programmable guided missiles in the military also make use of these versatile devices. In addition to electronics, they are also included in stereo systems and communications such as radio receivers and satellites.
EuroQuartz manufacture an extensive range of oscillating devices that each have highly specialised qualities to suit particular conditions. The majority are particularly robust in remaining impervious to extremes of temperatures. Still functional at -55 degrees Celsius and 125 degrees Celsius, they are ideal for use in scientific instruments used in research in different locations around the world. Timers on freezers in medical applications or within food suppliers are constantly reliable. Industrial furnaces or curing ovens benefit from timers and gauges that include oscillating devices that can withstand heat up to 200 degrees Celsius.
Strong and Resilient
Some oscillating devices are manufactured to remain operational in spite of sudden impacts and continued vibration. These are particularly useful when used in timers and instruments in cars, aeroplanes and trains in addition to heavy machinery. There are even some that are compatible for timers and measuring devices in areas where there could be radiation such as in nuclear power plants or in nuclear submarines.
Hermetically-sealed, waterproof units are perfect for the gauges on deep sea diving equipment or instruments on coastal structures that need to withstand high pressures. Similar moisture-resistant oscillating units are used in medical applications such as in life-saving pacemakers. Most devices are only a few millimetres in size but miniaturised versions are just 1.6mm x 1.2mm and are often used for medical instruments or in hearing aids.