White Paper

Process Temperature Measurement Practice--Radiation Thermometry

By Gary Freeman, ABB Measurement Products

Non-contacting temperature measurement techniques for the processing industries complement thermocouple and RTD sensors. Innovations in infrared technology are reducing their cost and size while increasing reliability.

Non-contacting temperature measurements offer several advantages:

  • Fast, permitting more consecutive measurements in a given time interval, such as for temperature distribution measurements.
  • Measurements on moving objects (conveyer processes, rolling mills, etc.).
  • Measurements in dangerous or inaccessible locations (objects at high voltage, long distance measurements).
  • High measuring temperatures up to 3000 °C (5432 °F). In such applications, contacting thermometers have a limited life span.
  • No interaction with the measured object measurement (suitable for poor heat conductors such as plastics and wood.)
  • No mechanical influences on the measured surface (painted surfaces, foams, elastomers.)
  • No contamination of the measured object (hygienic applications).


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