Training & Education


Book review: An introduction to process instrumentation

March 2000 Training & Education

Intended primarily for under-graduates studying instrumentation engineering over a two-semester period, this book introduces the fundamentals and terminology of the instrumentation field in a simple and gradual manner. Effective use is made of clear, uncluttered diagrams. Although they are not dimensionally accurate representations of real-life instruments, the diagrams do convey the concepts in a manner that is easy to grasp. The book is fully indexed and its thirteen chapters (and their subsections) are arranged and named in a manner that makes information easy to find.

In keeping with its broad approach, some mathematical formulas and derivations are included. These give the newcomer a good idea of the relationships that exist between the various variables in the measurement processes.

Although initially intended for engineering students, it is also a very effective introduction to the fundamentals for anybody whose occupation may require regular communication with instrumentation engineers/technicians. For example a new manager, who originally came from a field outside of instrumentation, would benefit greatly from glossing through the book over a week in the evenings.

While it would have been nice to see colour photographs - of real installations, and the innards of real instruments – it would have driven the costs up, and defeated the intention of creating a useful book that is affordable for students.

Gary van Vuuren's experience in lecturing on the subject clearly played a part in the writing of this useful publication. It performs its roll as a cost-effective and broad introduction to the various aspects of industrial sensors and process control with great effect. It sells at around half the price of similar books, and contains information that would normally require the purchasing of two or three of those other books.

"An introduction to process instrumentation" is available directly from the author.

Gary van Vuuren

(031) 204 2538

garyvv@umfolozi.ntech.ac.za




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