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Probe for Low Contact Force Temperature Measurement

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000047048D
Original Publication Date: 1983-Sep-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Feb-07
Document File: 2 page(s) / 27K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Goldman, LS: AUTHOR

Abstract

A temperature measurement probe which provides good thermal contact to a surface is described. Measurement of surface temperature is commonly made by a thermocouple pressed against the surface. Typically, a force of 100 grams is required to achieve a repeatable measurement. If the surface is delicate, it may be damaged by the irregularly shaped thermocouple bead. If the surface profile is irregular, it may also be difficult to adequately position the thermocouple without an adhesive bond to the surface. The structure shown in the figure overcomes these difficulties. A thermocouple bead 1 is encapsulated in a thin, flexible, thermally conducting foil 2, typically composed of copper or a silver alloy, which is filled with balls or filings 3 of a thermally conductive material, such as copper.

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Probe for Low Contact Force Temperature Measurement

A temperature measurement probe which provides good thermal contact to a surface is described. Measurement of surface temperature is commonly made by a thermocouple pressed against the surface. Typically, a force of 100 grams is required to achieve a repeatable measurement. If the surface is delicate, it may be damaged by the irregularly shaped thermocouple bead. If the surface profile is irregular, it may also be difficult to adequately position the thermocouple without an adhesive bond to the surface. The structure shown in the figure overcomes these difficulties. A thermocouple bead 1 is encapsulated in a thin, flexible, thermally conducting foil 2, typically composed of copper or a silver alloy, which is filled with balls or filings 3 of a thermally conductive material, such as copper. Heat shrinkable tubing 4 or other means may be used for encapsulation. The soft foil requires a low pressure to make intimate contact with the surface to be measured. Moreover, the foil can flex to conform to an irregular surface. The continuous thermal path from surface to foil to filler to thermocouple bead insures that the bead temperature closely approximates the surface temperature. A thermally conducting fluid may also be used with the filler to increase the conduction.

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