CCPI Europe confirmed as EMPRESS partner

15 February 2016 By Paul Roper

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We are happy to announce CCPI Europe Ltd has been confirmed as one of only a handful of commercial organisations that are partners in an EMPIR project to enhance process efficiency through improved temperature measurement, ‘EMPRESS’.

What is EMPIR?

The European Metrology Programme for Innovation and Research (EMPIR) is a €600 million, 10-year programme run in accordance with Horizon 2020 rules.

The EMPRESS project is looking at Enhancing Process Efficiency through Improved Temperature Measurement. By improving temperature measurement techniques for selected applications, this project aims to enhance the efficiency of high value manufacturing processes in terms of reduced wastage, improved yield, more consistent processing, increased intervals between sensor checks and maintenance, increased reliability, improved energy efficiency and reduced greenhouse gas emissions. CCPI Europe Ltd, as an unfunded partner, is involved in 3 of the many sub-projects covered by the overall scope of the program.

Investigating optimum Pt-Rh thermocouple combinations

The initial sub-project we would like to highlight in this discussion is the investigation in to the determination of the optimum Platinum Rhodium thermocouple combination.

Currently industry is using three Pt-Rh thermocouple combinations:-

The type S: Platinum 10% Rhodium v. Platinum

The type R: Platinum 13% Rhodium v. Platinum

The type B: Platinum 30% Rhodium v. Platinum 6% Rhodium

All three of these combinations have internationally agreed emf output tables documented in IEC 60584-1 2013.

The 3-year sub-project will look at various aspects of Platinum Rhodium thermocouple performance not only using the above Pt-Rh percentage combinations but many others to determine if the drift and high temperature performance of these different percentage combinations show a better or improved performance over the established favourites. Finally to complete the sub-project, the partners will also look to develop the draft reference function required to take the optimum combination to the next step of becoming part of the IEC tables.

Most of the work done on optimising Pt-Rh thermocouple performance to date was conducted in the early to mid-twentieth century and this sub-project will provide the information required to not only determine the stability of the established favourite Pt-Rh combinations at high temperature, but to also determined the optimum combination for use at high temperatures. In addition it could potentially allow a combination to be developed that extends the maximum operational temperature range for Pt-Rh thermocouple combinations.

The project has just started and we look forward to following up this introduction with news of the result of this and other sub-projects during 2016/17.

For further details on the EMPIR project go to https://www.strath.ac.uk/afrc/projects/

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Left: Measurement of a 7-wire thermocouple consisting of a range of different Pt-Rh alloys. The emf across over 20 different wire pairs is measured in rapid succession whilst the thermocouple is immersed in a Co-C high temperature fixed point (melting temperature 1324 °C) which is repeatedly melted and solidified. This gives an in-situ measurement of the stability of each wire pair at 1324 °C with unprecedented accuracy. The measurement is envisaged to proceed for several thousand hours.

About CCPI

Founded in 1984, CCPI are experts in the field of manufacturing and calibration of temperature sensors, working in partnership with our customers to ensure that we exceed their expectations. The state of the art CCPI Calibration Laboratory is both UKAS Accredited (No. 0600) and ISO Certified (ISO17025).