What Is a Thermocouple Used For?

A thermocouples is useful in industrial, scientific and original equipment manufacturer applications. Domestic appliances, such as stoves, toasters and furnaces, also contain thermocouples. Industries that apply thermocouples include pharmaceutical industries, cement industries, power generating industries and oil or gas industries.

A thermocouple is an electrical device that is used to measure temperature. It has two legs, each made from a different metal. The legs are attached together on one end through welding, creating a junction, which is the temperature-measuring point. Whenever a temperature change occurs, the junction senses the change, prompting the device to create a voltage which can be understood by use of thermocouple reference tables and then the temperature calculated. These devices have a cover that protects them from corrosive atmospheric elements and are generally cheaper and durable.

The thermocouples feature in various types including, type K, type J, type T, type E and type N. Types R, S and B also exist. The most common is type, K, which is cheap, accurate and reliable. The range of temperature measured by type K is also relatively wide. Another common type, J, is also cheap and reliable. However, it has a small temperature range and does not live longer when subjected to higher temperatures.