Maintenance, Test & Measurement, Calibration

Fibre-optic spectrometers for process measurement

July 2005 Maintenance, Test & Measurement, Calibration

In the chemical, manufacturing, food, beverage, dairy, pharmaceutical and cosmetic industries, spectroscopy using ultra-violet/visible and near-infrared light is safe and convenient and suitable for rapid in-line and laboratory determination of the colour, chemical components and purity present in raw materials, in-process materials, and finished product.

Process control applications include:

* Direct monitoring of chemical reactions.

* Quality measurement of intermediate and final products by the determination of homogeneity of blending processes.

* Measurement of concentrations of constituent chemicals in refining operations in the chemical and petrochemical industries.

* Determination of the state of polymerisation processes in the chemical and polymer industries.

Fibre-optic PC-based spectrometers provide a good solution for process measurements because of their ability to rapidly perform measurements at multiple remote locations via quartz fibre-optics. Process probes may be located directly in process streams at a distance of hundreds of meters from the spectrometer. Multiple probes may be either attached to a single spectrometer via a fibre-optic multiplexer, or a multichannel spectrometer system can be used.

The spectrometer is connected via USB or a serial link to an embedded or desktop PC, which, in addition to controlling and acquiring measurements from the spectrometer system, can process the data, provide closed loop control, and communicate with external scada systems or a database.

Avantes is offering a comprehensive range of spectrometers, light sources, fibre-optic cables, probes, accessories and software for any spectrometer application.

The spectrometers cover the UV/VIS/NIR spectrum with high resolution, and are low-cost, sensitive, fast and accurate. The standard software controls the spectrometer system, displays and records transmittance, absorbance and relative irradiance spectra. Software modules for precision colour, irradiance, chemometry, photon, oxygen and thin film measurements can be added.

Alternatively, the DLL interface packages for Linux, Windows, USB and LabVIEW allow flexible and powerful solutions for specific applications. Avantes is represented in South Africa by Westplex.


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