Archive for category Ultrasonic

The 15-30-15 Rule in Ultrasonic Level Measurements

Written by: Dan Weise

If I’ve heard it once, I’ve heard it a dozen times when talking with a Siemens support guy while evaluating a problematic ultrasonic level measurement application,
“What’s the echo confidence and strength?” “What’s the noise measurement?”

Those are numbers that quantify the echo quality: the floor values for echo confidence and strength and the ceiling value for the noise.   I’d look up the value and the guy on the phone would tell me whether the number was good, bad or so-so.  Finally, someone wrote down what those values should be, and they’re worth filing for future reference.

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Viewing data logs in Excel format (Siemens LUT 400 Ultrasonic Level Controller)

Written by: Dan Weise

Siemens’ LUT 400 saves data values and alarm events in text-formatted log files. This note covers how to get the files out of the LUT400 to view them in spreadsheet format using Siemens Log Importer macro for Excel.
Lut 400 1

The text files are extracted from the LUT400 over a USB cable (mini B type connector).  When the USB cable is connected to your PC, the LUT400 appears as a removable drive (circled in red, below)

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Why won’t Pactware work with the Siemens LUT 400?

Written by: Dan Weise

I’ve used Pactware for a couple years now, so I was surprised when I couldn’t get the Siemens LUT400 to work with the software. The LUT400 ultrasonic level and flow controller comes with a DTM file that I installed before opening the Pactware software.

The DTM file can be downloaded from this link: http://tinyurl.com/cqk2cky

Once it had been installed, I opened Pactware and updated the device catalog, as seen in the picture below:

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But when I attempted to establish a HART connection to the LUT400, I got an error message:

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Understanding Level Readings & the Truth about Level Measurement Instruments

In order to understand level readings, you must first comprehend how the instrument works. Three of the most common level-measuring techniques involve using a displacer, float, or differential pressure instrument.

Here’s the catch.

While each of these instruments can be used to report a level reading, none of them actually measure level.

I know what you’re thinking…

If none of these instruments measure level, how do we end up with a level reading? Read the rest of this entry »

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Does ultrasonic level measurement work with a standpipe?

The easy answer: Yes.

But in a recent webinar on choosing the best level technology for your application, the more specific answer is this: Yes, AS LONG AS you pay attention to the unit specs and a pretty simple rule of thumb.

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How to keep condensation from affecting Siemens ultrasonic level sensors

Recently, a customer noticed that the Siemens ultrasonic level measurement system he had installed in a storage bin showed a signficant amount of moisture buildup. At extreme temperature changes (like we’ve seen a lot latele here in the Midwest), there’d be moisture buildup on the Echomax ultrasonic transducer, sometimes so severely, they’d have problems from signal loss.

How could they fix it? One quick trip to the local big-box or auto supply store provided a Siemens-supported solution.

 

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LUT400 universal 4-20mA analog output gets rid of the ground loop

The Problem
Before I talk about the value of a universal 4-20mA analog output on a level controller, let me explain why anyone would care. It’s all about ground loops.

Since the early days of electronic instrumentation, way back when, even before cell phones or PCs, instrument people struggled with ground loops that create an offset error, drive the signal off scale, or burn up an analog circuit.

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