Back to the Basics: Sample Line Length and Diameter

A major delay in the response time of the analyzer comes from the length and inner diameter of the sample tubing. 

The sample transport delay is increased by the square of the sample tube’s inside radius, and in direct proportion to its length. Doubling the inside diameter of the sample tube will quadruple the time delay it causes. Although the maintenance interval can be increased by the use of a large inner-diameter tube, such delays are usually unacceptable. 

Back to the Basics: Sample pre-conditioning and filtering

Because the analyzer response time is critical, large pre-conditioning filters in the sample line are to be avoided. The delay in a filter can be estimated by dividing the filter volume by the sample flow rate through the filter. 

Back to the Basics: Location in Multi-zone Drying

When choosing the appropriate the sampling location in multi-zone drying you must consider what happens during fault conditions.  

The first or second zone might normally show the highest solvent concentration. But during an upset, it is not necessarily the zone where the peak concentration will appear. Excess solvent from an upset may very well tend to "carry over" into the next zone and produce a peak concentration there rather than in the first zone. 

Back to the Basics: Sample Probe Location

A key element in analyzer performance is the sampling location. Failure to install the sample probe in a "representative" location can lead to inaccurate or greatly delayed readings. A location representing the average solvent concentration of a single zone is desired. 

There are two basic methods of probe location: 

Back to the Basics: Sampling System Issues

The speed and accuracy of the analyzer depend equally upon the sampling system and the detector. The final development of the worst accidents occurs in seconds. It is part of the last line of defense against fire and explosion. There’s precious little time between the rise in concentration and the explosion. That’s a very good reason to pay close attention to the analyzer’s response time.

Did you know? 10 Facts about the PrevEx



the PrevEx is our flammability analyzer for lower flammable limit monitoring (LFL/LEL)

Back to the Basics: Flame Temperature

The flame temperature detector measures the heat given off by a flame as it burns combustible gas that diffuses into the flame from the sample. 

The small, well-regulated flame heats the tip of a temperature sensor suspended directly above it. The signal produced by the sensor when no flammable vapors are present drives the LFL indicator up to 0% LFL. This failsafe technique is known as a "live" zero because a weakening or loss of flame caused by lack of fuel will generate a downscale malfunction alarm. 

Back to the Basics: Flame Ionization

Flame ionization is a well-established measurement technique.

Back to the Basics: Catalytic Combustion

The catalytic detector consists of two small electrically heated beads having a finely divided platinum or palladium coating on the surface. A reference bead ONLY responds to changes in:

  • temperature
  • pressure
  • humidity

The active bead ALSO responds to:

Back to the Basics: LFL Analyzers and Control Systems

There are four main detector types used for combustible gas analyzers:

  1. catalytic
  2. infrared
  3. flame ionization
  4. flame temperature

Although several different types of sensors are employed as LFL monitors, each has an appropriate application to which it is best suited. Other types of detectors, for example electrochemical and tin-oxide semiconductor types, are generally inappropriate.