I would like to be able to strap some sort of vibrator and accelerometer onto the side of a hanging mass. By imparting known forces with the vibrator and reading the side-to-side acceleration I would like to calculate the mass of the hanging object.
If I were to use a motor with an offset weight on the shaft it would be imparting a sinusoidal force, so the acceleration would be sinusoidal as well and I think it would be phase-shifted. I think the waveform amplitude and phase math would be similar to an AC impedance/voltage/current circuit. But I don't know much about that either, especially how such would be read and calculated by a microcontroller (Arduino) in "real time". Or is there some AC circuitry or DSP that could do the work of the waveform analysis to present the arduino with a signal which was directly proportional to the unknown mass, e.g.
One major reason I am seeking to do this in this less-obvious way, is to learn more about practicalities of AC and signal processing in an Arduino context. Maybe a similar question would be: "How to use an Arduino to measure capacitance?".
I thank you for any thoughts you may contribute!