Specialized, highly accurate pressure and temperature transmitters are crucial for piping, filters and tanks in the food, beverage, dairy and pharmaceutical industries. Measuring instruments used in these applications must meet specific requirements, including construction material, surface quality, shock resistance and connection type.
Food and beverages must be produced and stored at very specific temperatures to maintain their quality and safety. Accurate control of the temperature measurement during the entire process from manufacture to delivery is therefore crucial. Low temperatures could compromise hygiene and product safety, and high temperatures can result in wasted energy and higher costs.
These markets also require sensors that can withstand the rigors of clean in place (CIP) and sterilize in place (SIP) cleaning, provide rapid temperature recovery, digital outputs and utilize specific wetted part materials depending on the media being measured. CIP cleaning is used to clean the interior surfaces of kettles, pipelines and tanks of liquid and semi-liquid food and beverage processing equipment. A transmitter’s wetted parts are those which come into contact the medium being measured. The wetted parts must have smooth edges and clean welding with no small spaces where media can collect and rot. Generally, wetted parts for these sensors are constructed from 316 Stainless Steel. The hygienic design of food and beverage plant components that physically touch the products are essential for avoiding contamination.
Pressure/Level transmitters in these industries utilize a flexible diaphragm as the pressure sensing element. Using a stainless steel diaphragm makes measuring safer and more reliable. Knowing the accurate level in tank applications allows the facility to have better control over product costs and manufacturing. Pressure through the process pipelines must be monitored to detect blockages in the pipes.
Typical Food Sensor Applications include:
Ultra Heat Treated (UHT) Milk – Billions of pounds of milk are used in the production of a wide variety of products annually, including yogurt, butter, cheese, sour cream, cottage cheese etc. While the production process for each of these foods varies, they all include multiple stages of heating and cooling the milk. Maintaining consistent milk temperature throughout this process is critical to producing a high quality and safe product.
Tank Level (Storage) – Food and beverage products are stored in holding tanks during production. Accurate level pressure and temperature measurement of storage vessels provides a record of on-hand inventory.
Specialty Baking – Continuous control of temperature in the very large ovens used in industrial bakeries is key to producing high-quality taste and product appearance. To achieve this, these ovens incorporate transmitters in multiple locations.