Pressure transmitters for extreme industrial environments

Posted By : Alice Matthews
Pressure transmitters for extreme industrial environments


By making significant upgrades to its pressure transmitters/transducers offering, West Control Solutions continues to support its long established process controller product line. Based on either thin-film or micro-electro-mechanical system (MEMS) sensing technologies, these high performance devices have been introduced through the company’s PMA product range.

They are optimised for use in uncompromising industrial environments - with what the company claims to be industry leading resilience to shock, vibration and humidity, plus extensive temperature ranges, all being supported. Their elevated reliability characteristics are underlined by the fact that they are supplied with a three year warranty.

Targeted specifically at use in hydraulic systems and heavy machinery, the 3100 series and 3200 series both maintain heightened degrees of stability and ensure ongoing repeatability of acquired data. Supporting measurement ranges up to 2,200 bar, these devices have an integrated thermal compensation mechanism - which enhances overall accuracy and means that less accompanying electronics is required for signal conditioning (thereby reducing the system’s total bill of materials costs). As a consequence of their rugged construction, they are able to withstand extreme pressure spikes. An extensive array of different electrical and pressure connection options are available, as well as a wide variety of electrical outputs. The vast majority of application requirements can thus be addressed through procurement off-the-shelf products, without the need for any modifications.

Benefiting from a MEMS-based sensing arrangement, the members of the 3500 series deliver a combination of price and performance. They are capable of determining relatively small changes in pressure even at low pressure values (covering a range up to 40 bar), with an accuracy of 0.2% full scale and minimal thermal drift. Each unit comprises a micro-machined silicon diaphragm with piezo-resistive elements situated at its edges. The cavity that separates the silicon diaphragm on the MEMS sensor component and the external diaphragm is filled with synthetic oil. Supplied in a small form factor with 316L stainless steel wetted parts, these technologically advanced devices are highly suited to refrigeration systems, medical instrumentation, heating ventilation air conditioning (HVAC) systems and gas analysis equipment. They have ultra-fast responsiveness (1ms) and draw 4.5mA of current during operation (thereby keeping the related power consumption to a minimum).

The company’s P30-2 pressure transducers have been developed in order to provide precise gauge pressure measurements in modern industrial applications. Measurement ranges available begin at -200 to 200 mbar and extend all the way up to -1 to 40 bar. Each device has an AISI 316L stainless steel housing that ensures operational robustness. These transducers can be specified with either a 0-10V (3-wire) or a 4-20mA (2-wire) output configuration. They are optimised for installation in hydraulic systems, industrial pumps, compressed air apparatus, filling/weighing machines, level measurement equipment and packaging machines.

Likewise the devices comprised within the P40-2 pressure transducer offering also have AISI 316L stainless steel construction and support measurement ranges that go from -125 to 125 mbar all the way up to -1 to 400 bar. These units come with a 4-20mA (2-wire) output signal and a high accuracy of 0.3%. Different process connection with an internal diaphragm is available. Alternatively a flush-mount design, which is highly suited to use with viscous and solids-bearing media, can be chosen.

A variety of compact designs and heavy duty housings are offered, thereby allowing these devices to be implemented in even the most space-constrained of application settings. All confirm to IP67 protection from liquid ingress, with the P40-2 being IP68 rated. Furthermore, they exhibit prolonged working lifespans (with above 100M operation cycles being expected).

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