IMI Sensors technical support is unmatched. Years of application engineering experience have yielded technical tips to help maintenance teams to protect their critical machinery against unscheduled downtime. Check them out!

IMI Sensors’ product line of Universal Transmitters

Harnessing the Power of the Universal Transmitter

IMI Sensors’ product line of universal transmitters (Models 682A06 and 682A16) offer many of the features of a programmable logic controller (PLC) but at only a fraction of the cost. Like its more expensive counterpart, the DIN rail mounted unit can:

  • Be custom-programmed.
  • Utilize an universal AC/DC power supply and provide power to an external sensor.
  • Accommodate an input signal from a wide variety of external sensors.
  • Provide a range of output options, including an output signal and trip capabilities.
  • Detect an error in the system.

Programming of the transmitter as well as visualization of input/output data and status messages is facilitated with the use of an optional front panel display/programmer (Model 070A80). The front panel does not have to be permanently mounted to one dedicated transmitter; instead, it can be moved from transmitter to transmitter as necessary for programming changes and/or status readouts. It is strongly encouraged that at least one front panel be procured for each installation.

The programming capabilities of the transmitter are powerful, allowing manipulation of input and output signal characteristics, trip relay functionality and simulation and copying of a single program from one transmitter to another. The programming logic is identical for Models 682A06 and 682A16 and is able to be password-protected for security purposes.

The universal transmitter provides two valuable power supply features.

  • The transmitter can utilize a wide range of power supplies without issue. The power supply must be 21.6-253 VAC or 19.2-300 VDC, 50 or 60 Hz.
  • The transmitter can supply power to any type of IMI Sensors’ products, regardless of whether it requires loop power or ICP® power. It is important to note that Model 682A06 can only provide loop power to 4-20mA transmitters while Model 682A16 can only provide ICP® power to ICP® accelerometers.

The universal transmitter is able to accommodate an input signal from a wide variety of external sensors, including current, voltage, resistance and temperature devices. This feature makes the transmitter ideal for applications using large numbers of sensors (where vibration sensors are from IMI Sensors but temperature and resistance sensors are from a third-party manufacturer) that want a single unified transmitter product.

Each transmitter can only receive a single input signal so transmitters and external sensors must be set up in a one-to-one ratio. Dual output external sensors must be paired with two transmitters, one to handle the vibration signal and one to handle the temperature signal.

It is also important to understand that each of the two models can only accept select input signals. The table below provides a matrix of the input type availability based on universal transmitter model number.

Input Signal Category

Input Signal Type

IMI Model



Provided by IMI Sensors

2-Wire Current (with loop power to sensor)



Voltage (with ICP® power to sensor)



Provided by Third-Party Manufacturer

Current (with no power to sensor)



2-Wire Resistance



3/4-Wire Resistance






2-Wire Resistance Temperature Detector



3/4-Wire Resistance Temperature Detector






The universal transmitter can be programmed to provide an output signal, trip capabilities through two output relays or both.

  • The output signal can be programmed for current or voltage. For both output types, multiple ranges are available from which to select.
  • There are two independently-operating Form A output relays. The relays can be programmed to operate in one five modes- setpoint (ie. relay trips at single setpoint), window (ie. relay trips between high and low setpoint of window), error (ie. relay trips when sensor has error; not available if input signal is in voltage), power (ie. relay trips when transmitter is powered) or off (ie. relay is off; does not trip).

The transmitter has the capability of sensing of wide variety of errors, including an input value outside of the acceptable input range, an external sensor error and a hardware error. When the transmitter is in error mode, the third line of the front panel display/programmer will illustrate an error code.

The table below provides a list of the Line 3 error codes and their causes.

Line 3 Error Codes



Input value below acceptable input value range.


Input value above acceptable input value range.


Error detected at external sensor.


Permanent error in analog-to-digital converter.


Internal cold junction compensation sensor defect.


Error in RAM.


Error in FLASH.


Error on analog output.


Program in transmitter and front panel display/programmer are not the same.


Connection error.

It is important to note that the transmitter will NOT detect an external sensor error if the transmitter is either receiving an input signal or producing an output signal in voltage. If external sensor error detection is required when using an ICP® accelerometer, IMI Sensors recommends wiring the accelerometer to a Model 682C03 to convert the signal from voltage to current and then sending the current signal to a Model 682A06 rather that wiring the accelerometer direct to a Model 682A16.

There are several different ways to configure a vibration monitoring system with a universal transmitter and IMI Sensors’ products, depending upon the type of external sensor being used and the functionality required. The flowchart below provides additional guidance on the proper configuration of a vibration monitoring system utilizing a universal transmitter and IMI Sensors’ products.