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Comment PDF Automation & Control

Improving a Thermal Loop: The Power Controller

By Nathan Ehresman |

Controlling the temperature of a process using a thermal loop is important in many applications. The importance of a power controller is discussed here For any process where temperature needs to be monitored or controlled, a thermal loop is required. Typically, a process that contains a thermal loop includes some key elements: the process itself, the temperature sensor or transmitter (often a thermocouple or resistance temperature detector (RTD) plays this role), the temperature controller and the power controller. The goal of the thermal loop is to detect the temperature of the process, and then control it based on certain fluctuations that happen along the line. FIGURE 1. A variety of temperature limit controllers are shown here   The way a thermal loop operates is straightforward. The sensor or transmitter consistently monitor the temperature of the process. As the process fluctuates, the sensor and transmitter will relay this message to the temperature controller (Figure 1). At this point, the temperature controller accepts the input, runs it through its internal algorithm, and sends a signal to the power controller (Figure 2), which in turns affects the process. The best way to explain the functionality of the temperature…
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