Industry Article

Heavy Duty Pressure Transducers for Industrial Applications

How can heavy-duty pressure transducers operate in harsh industrial environments?

Industrial Applications of Heavy Duty Pressure Transducers

Many industrial designs require pressure transducers, and some of them are operating in harsh and even hazardous environments. These applications range from petrochemical pump skids transporting corrosive materials to powerful HVAC systems where extreme changes in refrigerant temperature can introduce error into the measurements. Such situations and conditions necessitate the use of heavy-duty pressure transducers.


Heavy-duty pressure transducers. Image used courtesy of Honeywell


The purpose of a pressure transducer is to convert pressure into an analog signal for use in a control system. In particular, heavy-duty pressure transducers are needed in applications that involve extreme pressures and/or pressure spikes. Usually, the two main industrial settings where heavy-duty pressure transducers are needed often involve pumps and compressors.


Pressure Transducers for Pumps

Heavy-duty pressure transducers are critical in protecting pumps and assessing their efficiency. When used with pumps, heavy-duty pressure transducers can monitor pump usage and performance by measuring discharge/suction pressure and, if needed, measure water pressurization. This data, in turn, can then be used for both system control and preventative maintenance. 

In chemical manufacturing and production, heavy-duty pressure transducers are key to safely and effectively transferring liquids. For example, pressure transducers are extensively used in the oil and gas industry in connection with refinery pumps for transporting crude oil and petrochemicals for processing. In addition, these transducers are commonly used with pumps in commercial and wastewater processing. They are also critical to the efficient operation of pumps within many industrial HVACR (Heating, Ventilation, Air Condition, and Refrigeration) designs.

For example, an industrial pump skid, consisting of a skid frame, pump, and motor/engine to drive the pump, is used in fire suppression, chemical dispensing, process metering, or basic water transport. In such applications, a pressure sensor is obviously needed to monitor the pump pressure. However, the potential exposure to corrosive chemicals and extremely high-pressure spikes can further complicate the choice for a pressure sensor, in which case, a heavy-duty pressure sensor is the best option.


Pressure Transducers for Compressors

Pressure transducers monitor and control compressor efficiency by measuring compressor inlet/outlet pressure, cooling water inlet/outlet pressure, filter pressure drop, and compressor oil pressures. The pressure data gathered at these points is vital to the safe operation of highly-pressured systems. Pumps provide important information on performance and efficiency and the data needed for preventative maintenance.

Compressors are used in various situations, including power rotary screw equipment, heavy-duty tools, industrial-strength spray nozzles, and painting systems. Industries that depend on heavy-duty pressure transducers for their compressors include manufacturing, chemical processing, construction, agriculture, oil and gas, and medical equipment. 

Heavy-duty pressure transducers are also needed for industrial HVAC systems. In the refrigeration cycle, the refrigerant in the system undergoes state changes where there is either a large release or absorption of latent energy. Controlling the pressure of the refrigerant at different points through the refrigeration cycles allows the temperature of the phase change to be controlled as well. At low pressures, the refrigerant changes from liquid to gas and absorbs latent heat energy, while at high pressures, the refrigerant changes from gas to liquid and releases latent energy. 


Heavy-duty pressure transducers. Image used courtesy of Honeywell

In these industrial HVAC systems, heavy-duty pressure transducers are key to monitoring and controlling compressor suction/discharge to increase system efficiency and reduce energy costs by precisely matching refrigeration needs. Such transducers must remain accurate in extreme temperatures and be chemically compatible with the type of refrigerant used, especially where seals and leakages are a concern. 

Heavy-duty pressure transducers are critical to many industrial systems where extreme pressures and temperature are often coupled with exposure to corrosive media. Compressors and pumps operating in harsh and hazardous conditions depend heavily on their reliability, accuracy, and performance.

The Honeywell MIP series may be a suitable option for use in these operating environments. These transducers have been designed with a high safety factor and stainless steel construction and a high burst rating. The Honeywell MIP series possesses a TEB (Total Error Band) of ±0.7% and  FSS (Full Scale Span) from -40°C to 125°C, which work together to improve system uptime and system operating costs. They can handle exposure to corrosive media and have laser-welded hermetic joints that eliminate leakage and provide reliable operation even in the presence of electromagnetic fields.


As a Honeywell authorized distributor, Sager Electronics offers Honeywell's pressure transducer portfolio to help engineers with their industrial applications. Sager Electronics is also a source for additional electromechanical, interconnect, power, and thermal products and technology to help engineers in their design and implementation processes.