A strain gage is a sensor which offers varied resistance on application of force. In the event of an external force being applied to a stationary object, either strain or stress occurs. While stress is the body’s internal resisting force, strain stands for the resultant displacement and deformation. A strain gage converts weight, tension, pressure, force, etc. into an alteration in electrical resistance which is measurable.
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Thus a strain gage is an important sensor in electrical measurement method that is applied to measure mechanical quantities. They are often used in mechanical engineering and research for measuring stresses generated by machines. Strain gages can note expansion as well as contraction. They are incorporated into bridges to monitor their weak areas. Information thus obtained is used by civil engineering companies.
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Strain gages are also placed in wind tunnels. One important area of application is aircraft component testing. Automotive and aerospace are important end-users of strain gages. The medical sector uses them in medical pumps, non-invasive medical imaging and diagnostic equipment and minimally-invasive medical devices.
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The main advantage of strain gages is that they can be installed in products operating in extreme conditions. This covers areas with high radiation, extreme vibration, and temperatures ranging from -269°C to 1300°C. Thus strain gages are indispensible to many industries. This is the main driver of the strain gage industry all over the world and particularly China.
Strain gages include karma strain gages, bonded foil strain gages, transducer quality strain gages, and general purpose precision strain gages. Main regional markets in the strain gage industry are Asia, North America, and Europe. Major economies consuming strain gages are Germany, United States, China and Japan.
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Leading players in the global and Chinese strain gage market are Applied Measurements, BCM SENSOR TECHNOLOGIES, FBGS International, FISO Technologies, and Kyowa Electronic Instruments. Nanolike, SCAIME, Micron Optics, Dong-A Geovan, and HBM Test and Measurement are some of the other established participants.
It has been observed that vendors who are able to offer flexible, customized products to end-users have a competitive edge in the market. Superior customer service is an important asset for manufacturers. Innovative products are noted to be most demanded by consumers.
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