5 Ways To Eliminate Ground Loops-Part II

CLEVELAND - May 21, 2024 - PRLog -- In part I, we explored the frustration caused by ground loops. This phenomenon manifests as unwanted electrical noise – audible hums in speakers, jitter on screens, noisy measurements, and bad measurement data – and can even lead to unexpected communications loss and equipment shutdowns. Understanding the root cause of ground loop feedback allows users to implement effective mitigation strategies.

The Balancing Act of Grounding

Proper grounding not only prevents electrical shock but also minimizes electrical noise in electronic systems, maintaining signal quality. Achieving optimal system performance requires a well-designed grounding scheme that balances safety and noise reduction. It's a critical yet delicate task.

The Culprits: Different Ground Potentials, Multiple Paths to Ground

In an ideal world, all grounding points would be at the same electrical potential. However, in reality, factors like temperature and soil moisture create resistance variations. When current flows through the ground, these differences can cause voltage variations and ground loop problems.

Mitigating Ground Loop Feedback

Combating ground loop feedback requires a multi-pronged approach:
  1. Prevention is Paramount: A solid system design with proper grounding and wiring is essential. Sensitive equipment should have a single-point star topology grounding and low resistance cable for a good earth ground. A pre-installation inspection is vital.
  2. Separate Ground by Function: Ground circuits related to measurements should be kept separate from safety grounds or ground that are connected to high-power equipment. Ideally, each of these should have their own ground "tree" and only be coupled together at a low impedance physical ground point.
  3. Avoid Multiple Connections to Ground: One of the most common group loop issues is caused by connecting the shield of a cable to the ground at each end. This will immediately create a ground loop such that any EMI in the area will induce a current in the shield.
  4. Reducing Interference: Try to reduce or remove nearby EMI interference from AC power lines or high-power equipment. If this is unavoidable, use a shielded cable with one end of the shield connected to the ground.
  5. Isolation is Your Ally: In situations where multiple grounding points are unavoidable, employing signal isolation techniques can prevent current flow through unintended paths. Shielded cables can further enhance noise reduction for low-current applications but see #2 above.
Galvanic Isolation for Data Acquisition: Consider using data loggers with galvanic isolation for reliable data acquisition. This feature prevents ground loops between sensors, measurement circuitry, and computers, ensuring accurate measurements. It provides isolation between circuits, aiding in accuracy.


Understanding the root causes of ground loop feedback and implementing mitigation strategies significantly reduces the likelihood of encountering this issue. A well-grounded system, meticulous planning, and proper equipment lead to accurate measurements and trouble-free data acquisition.

For more information, visit us at https://www.dataloggerinc.com.

CAS DataLoggers
Elizabethe Zala
Source: » Follow
Email:***@dataloggerinc.com Email Verified
Tags:Ground Loops
Location:Cleveland - Ohio - United States
Account Email Address Verified     Account Phone Number Verified     Disclaimer     Report Abuse
CAS DataLoggers News
Most Viewed
Daily News

Like PRLog?
Click to Share