Incremental encoders are position feedback devices that provide incremental counts. An incremental encoder provides relative position, where the feedback signal is always referenced to a start or home position.
Incremental encoders are commonly used in harsh environments, of control and measurement motion control systems, such as:
- Moist and wet
- Contaminants such as dirt and dust
- Corrosive and wash-down
- Hazardous, including explosive
- Shock and vibration
- Temperature, both low and high
- High shaft load
Light duty incremental encoders may carry only a IP54 enclosure rating while Industrial duty (mentioned above) incremental encoders may be IP67 rated.