The basic purpose of instrumentation in a process is to obtain the information to the the process.

A broad definition of instrumentation may be

Instrumentation is the


and of industrial proshould be controlled,

it must be measured,

it must be

"If you control it manually you should control it automatically."

The progress of as it is known took place

largely in the 1 of continuous

for continuous measurement of pressure, temperature, level, etc. became

There are demands in the quality of mea-

surement and for of new based on newly found physical

and chemical laws and effects.

is as old as civilization. It is an essential

and the physical world. It gives us a repeatable and way

the world in which we live. The process of measuring is essentially that some unknown value with a value which is assumed to be known; The

latter is called a standard. A measurement (perhaps called an instrument or

scale or meier or onnh17pr) -i~ ~ rlp.uir[-.-.. rlp.C'~nn0>rI t ... f'''H,,~l~+n+ ...... 4-t...: .... ~~~.---_:-

with one any mea-

over a scale or the recording of a pen

over a chart

The elements of the f Fi lId "

" "" 0 19. " 0 not necessarily appear in all

FIgure I . I IS mtended as a vehicle for presenting the concept of

A' " elements and not as a physical schematic of a generalized instrument

gIven mstrument may mv?lve the basic functions in any number and combinaneed not appear In the order given in Fig. 1.1.

1.2 shows a filled thermal system with the various functional elements

for process m t Th li . '

easuremen . e iquid- or gas-filled temperature bulb

industries and industrial manu-

economics of industrial the

For this purpose and for the

or condition into a correspondmz can be described in terms of the functional The functional elements of an instrument 1.1.

1.1 Functional Elements of an Instrument

Spiral bourdon-tube

"'''''''''1'; element of an instrument energy from the measured medi urn and on the value of the measured

Temperature bulb (liquid or gas)

1.1) is that which first rem


It should be noted that every instrument need not include a vari-

while some several.

element the signal represented

nPlrtArrrl the intended task of an instrument. In the rr"""""

tion process, the A variable-rnanipu-

"'''dw~'a does not necessarily follow a variable-conversion it may

,QPUTilPY"P in the or not appear at all.

data-transmission element transmits the data from one element to the other.

It may be as as a shaft-and-bearing assembly or as complicated as a

for signals from one place to another.

element performs the translation such as the




fCi I





characteristics of an instrument are very necessary for choosing

suitable instrument for tasks. It can be

two sub-areas:

and the number of significant figures to which a measurement may be made. Significant figures convey actual information regarding the magnitude and of a quantity. The more significant the figures, the greater the of measurement. Now consider, for example, a resistor, whose value of true resistance is 1,592, 154 Q, measured by a multimeter which consistently and repeatedly indicates 1.5 M Q. The observer cannot read the true value from the scale. His estimates from the scale reading consistently yield a value of 1.5 M Q which is as close to the true scale as he can read the scale by estimation. Although there are no deviations from the observed value, the error created by the limitation of the scale reading is a precision error. This example illustrates that conformity is a necessary, but not sufficient condition for precision because of the lack of significant figures obtained.

The repeatability of a measuring device may be defined as the agreement among a number of consecutive measurements of the output for the same value of the input, under the same operating conditions, approaching the measurement from the same direction, and for full-range traverses.

The reproducibility of an instrument is the closeness of agreement among repeated measurements of the output for the same value of input, made under the same operating conditions over a period of time, approaching from both directions. Perfect reproducibility means that the instrument has no drift, i.e, the instrument calibration does not gradually shift over a long period of time such as a week, a month, or even a year.

Drift is an undesired change or a gradual variation in output over a period that is unrelated to changes in output, operating conditions, or load. This term most often applies to changes that occur after a specified warm-up period. A long-term calibration drift usually occurs because of the ageing of component parts.

Under laboratory conditions, drift of an element is usually determined in one of the following two ways:

(i) By maintaining exact operating and load conditions and monitoring output variations for a fixed input signal, as a function of time. This is called point drift. (ii) By maintaining input signal, operating conditions, a load approximately constant, and by comparing calibration curves at the beginning and at specified intervals of time. This is called calibration drift.

Drift for a measuring device can either be systematic (i.e. approximately predictable in direction and magnitude as a function of time), random (non predictable), or some combination of the two. For most devices, drift is measured and specified as a percentage of output span.

Sensitivity can be defined as the ratio of a change in output to the which causes it, at steady-state conditions. The ratio must be expressed if! the units of measurement of output and input.

Usage of this term is generally limited to linear devices where. the plot of output to input magnitude is a straight line over the operating range of the device.

since a ternthe bulb because of the

Static characteristics characteristics


The static characteristics of an instrument arc, in considered for instru-

ments used to measure an process condition. All the static

mance characteristics are obtained one form or another of a process caned

calibration. There are a number of related definitions such as repeatabiletc. which are also described below.

in general, as the process for determiwith a standard, of the correct value of

on a meter or other measuring or determination of

nn'"",..,r>nn to particular values of voltage, pressure, flow or some other output.

a calibration of an instrument, the following steps are necessary:

Examine the construction of the and and list all the

'-''''vH'~, as best as one can, which of the inputs will be in the

for which the instrument is to be calibrated.

that will allow an significant inputs to vary over the ranges considered necessary.

some constant,

the desired static

others, and recording the output,

may be defined as the ability of a device or a system to a true value of a measured variable under reference conditions. In

accuracy is and necessarily expressed as the limit of

device or system under certain operating conditions that

Precision is the degree of exactness for which an instrument is de-

or intended to It is composed of two characteristics,

correction factors after determining the amount of instrumental


the instrument against a standard

Environmental errors Environmental errors are due to conditions external to the measuring device, including conditions in the area surrounding the such as the effects of change in temperature, humidity, barometric pressure, or magnetic or electrostatic fields. It may be avoided by, (a) providing air conditioning

hermetically sealing certain components in the instrument use of magnetic shields

The cause of such errors is unknown or not determinable in the ordinary process of making measurements. Such errors are normally small and follow the laws of chance. Ramdom errors thus may be treated mathematically according to the laws of probability.

In the epigraph, Lord Kelvin observes that "when you can measure you are speaking about, and express it in numbers, you know something about it". But that knowledge is never perfect The measurer must understand the sources of error in the measurement process and must ensure the level of accuracy required for the particular application in question.

The sources of error, other than the inability of a piece of hardware to provide

a true measurement, are listed below.

(i) insufficient knowledge of process parameters and design conditions (ii) poor design

(iii) change in process parameters, irregularities, upsets, etc. (iv) poor maintenance

(v) errors caused by people who operate instrument equipment (vi) certain design limitations

are considered

range of values of a measured variable to

This is called dead and


is defined as that lost motion or free or other

True value is

the measured variable. It is

True value Instrument

- Static error.

Static Errors

These of errors, sometimes referred to as in flu-

alike. A constant uniform deviation of the error. There are two

1.4.3 Dynamic Characteristics

Instruments rarely respond instantaneously to changes in the measured variable. Instead, they exhibit a characteristic of slowness or sluggishness due to such things as mass, thermal capacitance, fluid capacitance, or electric capacitance. In addition to this, pure delay in time is often encountered where the instrument waits for some reactions to take place. Such industrial instruments are nearly always used for measuring quantities that fluctuate with time. Therefore, the dynamic and transient behavior of the instrument is as important as, and often more important than, static behaviour.

The dynamic behaviour of an instrument is determined by subjecting its primary element to some unknown and predetermined variations in measured quantity. The three most common variations are:

(i) step change, in which the primary element is subjected to an instantaneous and finite change in measured variable

Instrumental errors Instrumental errors are the errors inherent in measurinstruments because of their mechanical structure, such as friction in

of various components, irregular spring stretching

or reduction in tension due to improper handling or overloadthe instrument. It may be avoided by:

a suitable instrument for the

measurement application

measured vari-

Since the equation Xo = is an algebraic equation, it is clear that, no matter how

Xi might vary with the instrument output (reading) follows it perfectly with

no distortion or time of any sort Thus, a zero-order instrument represents

ideal or perfect dynamic performance. A practical example of a zero-order instrument is the displacement measuring potentiometer.

If, in Eq. (1.1), all a's and b's other


a] + aoXo = boX;


Any instrument that follows the above Eq. (l.5) IS defined as a firstorder instrument.

By dividing Eq. (1.5) by ao, the equation can be written as:

a] dxo bo

-·--+xo = =:>,

ao dt ao

(rD+ l)xo =KXi

between the true value of a

the if no static error is



r = - = time constant ao


The relation between any and

HS"IHIIDUUU:;. be written as:

K = bo = static sensitivity


The time constant t always has the dimensions of time, while the static sensitivity K has the dimensions output/input. The operational transfer function of any firstorder instrument is

Xo (D)=_!!_ Xi D+l

A very common example of a first-order instrument is a mercury-in-glass ther-


assumed constant. (1.1) are assumed

into the algebraic

A second-order instrument is de-


d2xo dxo

a2 --2- + aj - + aoXo = boXi

dt dt

The above equation can be reduced as



Xi over its intended range of onerarm

is defined as a zero-order instrument.

Th ti of a zero-order instrument may be

e sta Ie

defined as follows:

(1.11 )

ron = ao = undamped natural frequency, in rad/time a2










D = Lldl



where, Dav = average deviation

Id11 + Id21 -l- ... = absolute values of deviations n = total number of readings

The average deviation is an indication of the precision of the instruments used in making the measurements. Highly precise instruments will yield a low average deviation between readings .



The standard deviation of an infinite number of data is the

square root sum of all the individual deviations squared, divided by the

number of readings. It may be expressed as

instrument is the


is an

nrprl"'1'lt" of the final test result To make statisnumber of measurements is The

be small to random errors, because

cannot remove a fixed bias contained in all the mea-


or, (J= ---




(J = standard deviation

The standard deviation is also known as the root mean square deviation and is the most important factor in the statistical analysis of measurement data. Reduction of this quantity effectively means improvement in measurement.



Arithmetic Mean

value of <1 measured variable is arithmetic mean of the: taken. The best will be made when the number measure-

A. Tick (,/) the appropriate answers-

1. A variable-manipulation element

'(a) manipulates the signal to perform the intended task

(b) converts the output signals into a more suitable variable (c) receives energy from the measured medium

(d) none of the these

2. A data-representation element

(a) transmits data from one element to the other (b) performs translation functions

(c) manipulates the signal

(d) none of these

3. Precision is the

(a.1 degree of exactness

(b) closeness of agreement among a number of consecutive measurements . (c) ability to respond to true value of a measured variable

(d) none of the above

B. Fill-up the blanksz-

1. Calibration is the process of by _

of the correct value of each scale reading on a meter.

.2. Static errors are generally of three types, given as (a) ~_

(b) and (c) _

3. The average deviation is an of the instruments.



L ..... X



X c=. arithmetic mean

,~,,""'Hr-.~ taken

" .. './'''n

= total number of



deviations from the mean can

::::::Xn - x

The deviation may have a

the must be zero.

value. The

sum of all


It may be defined as the sum of the absolute values of the

The absolute value of the dimendeviation may be expressed as

the number of

sions is the value without to






5. the different sources of errors.

6. What are instrumental and environmental errors?



the functional ele-

be avoided?


Units and standards of measurements are important factors for monitoring and control of industrial parameters. The quality of an industrial product depends on units of measurement that are reliable and accurate. Also, accurate measurement standards are essential in industrial applications. A considerable number of units and standards have been used in industrial environment at various times. However, some systems of units and standards have been widely accepted by various industries throughout the world. In this chapter, various types of units and standards of measurements are discussed.

The physical quantities must be defined, both in kinds and magnitude, to ensure precise technical communication about the results of measurement and perform calculations. A unit of measurement may be defined as the standard measure of each kind of physical quantity, and the number of the measure (also called numerical ratio or numerical multiplier) is given as the number of times the unit occurs in any given amount of the same quantity. Thus, the magnitude of a physical quantity may be written as

Physical quantity = Numerical Ratio x Measurement Unit


A physical quantity is always defined by the measurement unit. The numerical ratio has no physical meaning without the unit. A large number of systems of measurement units have been used at various times during human history. Some systems of units are of only historical interest, some are of value in theoretical discussions and some others have been employed in measurements in actual experimental work. Different measurement units have been found acceptable in

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