Designed specifically for tight spaces, the Subminiature Gauging LVDT delivers high performance in a small package. A sapphire bearing and hardened stainless steel spring-stop guide the tip, providing an exceptionally smooth static and dynamic response and resistance to side load. The Subminiature Gauging LVDT feature sub-micron resolution, linear analog output, flat dynamic response to kHz levels, and very low temperature coefficients. Extremely lightweight, captive cores are small and rugged. Manufactured using corrosion-resistant alloys, Subminiature Gauging LVDT are suitable for short term submersion in harsh media such as brake fluid and hot saline.

Where to Buy?
U.S. International OEM

List Price:


High Performance

  • Micron resolution with large stroke/size ratio
  • Gauging pin enables measurement on moving parts
  • Frictionless design for robust use over millions of cycles
  • Suitable for use in harsh fluids and environments

Ease of Use

  • Plug and play usability
  • Easily customized to suit specific requirements
  • Signal conditioning options for any application

Electrical Specifications

Linear Stroke Length 4, 8, 24, 38 mm (standard resolution)
6 mm (high resolution)
500 µm or less (nano resolution)
±1% Peak (typical)
(±2% max) with straight line
0.2% RMS with multi-segment
0.1% RMS with polynomial
Sensitivity DEMOD output/sensor range
Signal to noise 4200 to 1 (with filter 3 dB down at 800 Hz, standard resolution), 466 to 1 (unfiltered)
Resolution 1.0 µm for 4 mm stroke
2.0 µm for 8 mm stroke
6.0 µm for 24 mm stroke
9.5 µm for 38 mm stroke
0.6 µm for high resolution version
125 nm for nano resolution version (up to 10 nm resolution is possible with customized sensor range and electronics)
Frequency response 800 Hz standard, 20 KHz optional
Temperature coefficient offset 0.002% /°C (typical) span 0.030% /°C (typical)
Hysteresis ± 1 micron
Repeatability ± 1 micron

Mechanical Specifications

Overall body length 30.5 mm for 4 mm stroke
50.5 mm for 8 mm stroke
127 mm for 24 mm stroke
183 mm for 38 mm stroke
50.5 mm for high res version
50.5 mm for nano version
Outside diameter 6.0 mm (smooth body) 8.0 mm for 38 mm stroke
Spring stiffness 0.2 N/mm (1 lb/in)
Bearing material sapphire and stainless steel
Standard core tip 4.76 mm stainless steel ball
Housing material

400 stainless steel smooth body; 

400 stainless steel 3/8-24 UNF thread (38 mm stroke has 7/16-20 UNF thread);

400 stainless steel M10x1.5-6g metric thread (38mm stroke has M11x1.5-6g metric thread)

Attachment method threaded body
Leadouts 45 cm multistrand, shielded, stainless steel reinforced teflon insulated cable
Connector keyed 4 pin Lemo, polyolefin relief
Operating temperature -55 to 175°C
Core material stainless steel
Cable diameter 0.070 “

Contact us for information on custom designs suitable for immersion, corrosive and high pressure environments.


As an example. here is the Quick Start Guide for the M-DVRT-9:

Page 7 refers to the Slope and Offset that you will need to enter into the Smart Motherboard software.

In the Smart Motherboard software, click Tools.

Click Configuration and the Configuration screen appears.

Select the appropriate channel (remember that each channel, i.e., each DVRT and DEMOD –DVRT signal conditioner card in the Smart Motherboard is calibrated separately) by checking the Channel check box.

Select the Linear Radio Button.

Enter the Slope and Offset in the number scroll boxes.

Select None in the Peak Detect drop-down.

Change the Units from Volts to mm (for millimeters) by wiping through with your mouse.

Click File.

Click Save As Default.

Click File.

Click Return and you are ready to sample in millimeters.

The MG-DVRT Microminiature Gauging and SG-DVRT Subminiature Gauging Differential Variable Reluctance Transducers are typically calibrated with their signal conditioning electronics at the factory. These calibrations are highly accurate and are always recommended. However, under certain conditions the user may determine that a field calibration should be performed. This technical note provides a step-by-step instruction to field calibration and assumes the user is familiar with the DVRT displacement transducer and its signal conditioning electronics (Motherboard, Smart Motherboard, or DEMOD-DC).

Click here.

If you are using the standard cable type supplied with the DVRT sensors, 20 feet is the maximum for M-DVRT and MG-DVRT, and 60 feet is the maximum for S-DVRT, SG-DVRT and NC-DVRT. If you require longer cable lengths, LORD MicroStrain® can provide custom cables of lower resistance.

No, carbon fiber has not been shown to pose a problem.

Yes, as a courtesy, LORD MicroStrain® will provide an appropriate drill bit and tap to match the DVRT's thread size at a nominal charge.

In most cases, MicroStrain calibrates every DVRT with its accompanying electronics and provides a detailed calibration certificate. The certificate provides 3 methods of calibration and all the particulars including formulas to resolve voltage into engineering units.

  • Standard Least Squares Linear Fit provides a simple mathematical method to convert sensor output to displacement and delivers reasonable accuracy.
  • Polynomial Fit provides a more mathematically intensive method to convert sensor output to displacement and in turn delivers a high degree of accuracy. A possible drawback to some users of this method may be that it can not accurately report measurements beyond its stroke length (i.e., over-stroking).
  • Multi-Segment Linear Fit provides the most mathematically intensive method to convert sensor output to displacement, delivers a high degree of accuracy and is not subject to the drawback of over-stroking.
  • Body length to stroke ratios for DVRTs are typically 2.5 to 1 as compared to 6 to 1 for LVDTs.
  • Microminiature DVRTs are available in body diameters of only 1.5 mm (.060") and with core diameters of only 0.5 mm (.020"); this makes them the World's smallest commercially available linear displacement transducers.
  • DVRTs maintain their temperature stability due to the use of two coils arranged differentially.
  • Each DVRT is capable of submersion as a standard feature.
  • Each DVRT can be hermetically sealed as an option.
  • Microminiature DVRTs are available with super-elastic, nickel titanium cores.
  • DVRTs have a standard operating temperature range up to 175 degrees C; LVDTs typically only operate up to 85 degrees C.
  • DVRTs have been operated successfully in liquid nitrogen; LVDTs typically only operate to -20 degrees C.

The output is an analog DC voltage proportional to linear displacement.  The full scale voltage is optionally +/-5 volts or 0-10 volts.  The analog voltage is easily read using a multi-meter or DAQ.  The voltage can also be read in the digital domain by using LORD MicroStrain® Smart Motherboards.  These Smart Motherboards provide a data gateway to PC-based software or to user-programmable LCD displays on the motherboard itself.

Yes. DVRTs can be used in wet environments.  One of our customers uses the DVRT to measure mussel growth on the ocean floor.  An automotive customer uses the DVRT in a hot oil environment for under-the-hood testing.  Our orthopaedic customers use the DVRT for soft and hard tissue testing (in vivo and ex vivo) in cadaver and animal studies.

The spring force on standard units is 0.2 newtons/mm or 1 pound/inch.

Sandard DVRTs can operate up to 100 PSI.  However, custom-designed sensors have been used in applications up to 10,000 PSI.  Please contact your sales or support engineer for more info.

Typically, every DVRT is calibrated at the factory with its accompanying DEMOD signal conditioner.  The calibration is made over the entire system (DVRT and DEMOD) to insure the highest accuracy.  DVRTs and DEMODS are color-coded to insure that they stay together as a pair when in use.

LORD MicroStrain® posts links to a number of published scientific papers at:

The term ‘Motherboard’ refers to the LORD MicroStrain® DEMOD-DVRT or DEMOD-DVRT-TC signal conditioner mounting chassis.  The standard Motherboard provides a mounting slot and power to the individual DEMODs.  The Smart Motherboard provides a mounting slot, power and digital communications (RS-232) to the individual DEMODs.  Both Motherboard and Smart Motherboard provide analog ouput to a DAQ.  In addition, Smart Motherboard provides digital output to a computer.  Motherboards and Smart motherboards can accommodate 1 to 8 DEMOD cards.

DVRT Type Threaded Core Threaded Body Core Clamps Body Clamps SM-Block Core/Body Magnetic Mount Core/Body
Subminiature X X     X X
Subminiature Gauging X X        
Microminiature X X X X    
Microminiature Gauging X X   X    
Non-Contact   X**        

** Non-Contact comes standard with threaded body except for 5.0.


In a word, no. The design of an LVDT’s coil forms a Wheatstone full bridge and the design of LORD's DVRT coil forms a Wheatstone half-bridge. LORD MicroStrain® signal conditioning electronics are designed for the half-bridge.  Likewise, a DVRT can not use a LVDT's signal conditioning electronics.

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