In our four-part series on temperature measurement, we have reviewed the basics of temperature measurement, the value of using a temperature transmitter, and the ins and outs of a thermowell. In this blog, which is the last in the series, we examine an alternative solution for situations where traditional thermowells may not be the best temperature measurement option.
Monitoring process temperatures is one of the most common and valuable actions taken during production. It helps operators maintain a safer working environment and helps with determining process efficiency and product quality.
Traditionally, thermowells have been the go-to solution for many manufacturers. However, thermowell installation isn’t always an easy or timely process. While installing a thermowell isn’t typically difficult, the areas where they are needed are often inconvenient to reach, have pressurized lines, and offer little extra space for additional hardware. Depending on the individual setup, production may need to be halted entirely for the duration of the installation, causing manufacturers to lose time and money.
Emerson offers a solution to traditional thermowells with Rosemount™ X-well™ Technology, which handily addresses the challenges that are characteristic of other traditional process temperature measurement methods.
Traditional Surface Measurement Tools
Surface measurement tools are more easily installed than most other methods. There’s often no need to shut production down because they can be installed in difficult areas and without penetrating pressurized pipes. This helps eliminate potential structural damage and leak points. However, traditional surface measurement models are often incapable of providing accurate or repeatable internal process temperature measurements in every environment.
The relationship between surface temperature and process temperature is greatly dependent on the difference between ambient temperature and internal process temperature. Traditional surface measurement tools often apply a uniform correction to surface temperature measurements to counter anticipated changes. They should also consider the thermal conductivity of the measurement installation. However, the accuracy of a surface measurement tool reading can become questionable if either the process or ambient temperature changes.
How Rosemount X-well Technology Is Superior
Since so many factors can impact a traditional surface temperature measurement reading, Rosemount X-well Technology was developed to counter traditional measurement barriers.
More Accurate Measurements
Rosemount X-well Technology implements a heat flux algorithm that understands the thermal conductive properties of the temperature measurement assembly and corresponding piping or vessel, along with a surface temperature sensor solution that accurately calculates internal process temperature. This means it measures ambient temperature and the pipe surface, then runs those measurements through a thermal conductivity algorithm to calculate process temperature.
To ensure the most accurate temperature measurement, a Rosemount X-well solution requires three basic considerations: pipe diameter, pipe schedule, and pipe material. Because Rosemount X-well Technology accounts for the thermal conductive properties of the pipe and assembly, process temperature measurements are typically more accurate than those taken utilizing traditional surface measurement tools. This makes it an ideal solution for steady state applications.
Rosemount X-well Technology can be installed without shutting down the production process and typically does not require a skilled contractor. A standard pipe clamp procedure and ordinary hand tools are sufficient tools for most installations. As an alternative to traditional pipe mounts that can be heavy and awkward to install, the latest version uses a unique Universal Pipe Mount design that utilizes a cut-to-fit banding solution. Unlike static mounting solutions that can lose contact with the pipe due to vibrations and pipe expansion or contraction due to process temperature fluctuation, the Universal Pipe Mount has an integral spring assembly, along with a spring-loaded RTD. This allows for process fluctuations while still maintaining solid contact with the outside of the pipe.
Increased Safety and Reduced Costs
Not only is Rosemount X-well Technology easy to install and use, but it can help operators save money on installation and maintenance. It also adds and enhances safety systems in the workplace.
Minimal failure risks mean Rosemount X-well Technology helps keep process production moving safely. Because it’s mounted to the pipe surface with the Universal Pipe Mount solution, the pipe structure is not compromised, helping reduce leaks and weak points on pressurized lines. This increases employee safety, especially in volatile and hazardous environments.
Operators save money initially because system design and installation do not require the added expense of hiring an engineer, specialized technician, or welder. Neither does making late changes or additions to the design. Rosemount X-well Technology also requires less maintenance than traditional surface measurement methods, saving operators money on labor costs, as well as expenses associated with production downtime.
We hope you have enjoyed our series on temperature measurement solutions. For more information, download a free copy of The Engineer’s Guide to Industrial Temperature Measurement, 2022 Edition to learn everything you need to know about these temperature components.