No matter what kind of industry you are in – manufacturing, fracking, recycling, construction - thermocouples are part of your business. What are thermocouples? Actually, they are pretty fascinating, because they are based on the very simple principle that when dissimilar metals are put in contact, voltage is generated. The result? Interesting things happen.
We recently found an excellent online library of information about thermocouple wire that we’d like to share with you. It is on the website of the Reotemp Instrument Corporation in San Diego. All the information that Reotemp provides is interesting and potentially valuable to know, so you’ll want to CHECK IT OUT for yourself.
Here’s a quick summary of some basic information that you can learn there about thermocouple wire . . .
- A thermocouple is made from two wires that are made from different kinds of metals. They are connected at one end – the “junction.” When that connection is made, voltage is generated; that voltage can be measured by equipment that is located at the other ends of the two wires. And here’s where things get interesting, because when temperatures change at the junction, the amount of voltage that’s generated changes too. When those changes in voltage are measured, the thermocouple can be used as a device that can remotely measure temperature. Example: If you run a thermocouple wire from a ceramics-firing kiln on your production line to a gauge located in the control room next door, you can remotely measure the temperature in the kiln.
- Thermocouples are used in many kinds of industrial, scientific, manufacturing applications. Reotemp points out that they can be found in power generation, oil and gas production, pharmaceutical, biotech, cement, paper manufacturing, and more. And thermocouples are also used in stoves, furnaces, toasters, coffee makers and other appliances you use at home.
What metals are used in thermocouple wires? The answer is, it depends on the applications where they are used. In some specialized applications, precious metals like platinum and rhodium can be used; they have the potential to be recycled very profitably.
If you think your business may have valuable thermocouple wire hiding in its scrap, you can find out easily by calling Specialty Metals Smelters and Refiners at 800-426-2344. We're experts at recycling and refining precious metal scrap, and we can examine a sample of your thermocouple wire scrap and let you know just how much profit you might be able to reclaim.
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