# Thermocouple to measure the temperature of glass

 P: 1 Is it wrong to use a thermocouple to mesure the temperature of glass that will range from 20-300oC? as the range of the thermocouple is much higher, does this make it inaccurate?
 Sci Advisor PF Gold P: 1,481 no, staying well within the upper and lower bounds of the devices range alows you to be more comfortable with the data. I.e. there usually is a linear portion of the calibration curve....
 P: 2 Depending on what type thermocouple you are talking about as there are various types (k,j,e,n,t,r,s,b) they all have different ranges, type k being typically around -200 deg.c to +1200 deg.c and yes, you're right , the greater the range of the measuring instrument, the less accuracy you will have. That's one of the reasons why that in engineering, the calculations need to be accurate. Think of it like you need to put 10 PSI in your bike tyres but the pressure gauge your using to measure it is 0 - 1000 PSI. Wouldn't it be wiser to use a gauge with a range of about 0 - 20 PSI? Then you have the resolution. Hope this helps
 Emeritus Sci Advisor PF Gold P: 7,337 Thermocouple to measure the temperature of glass Sam, I do not think that a thermocouple is analogous to a tire gage. The thermocouple produces a voltage which is proportional to the temperature, you then use a meter to measure that voltage. Your gage is like the meter, the thermocouple is the device being measured. The key issue is, as mentioned above, that you use a thermocouple which has linear response in your region of interest. Omega is an excellent resource for temperature measurement questions. They have very good technical reference available and sell (at a price!) everything you need to measure about anything.
 P: 2 Integral, you missed my point. What i was trying to explain was that if the measuring instrument is of a much higher range (say, +200%) then you start to lose accuracy.The tyre gauge example was just a way of explaining. And yes, you're right about measuring the millivolt output with a multimeter but you will only get an output if the 2 junctions are at different temperatures.Also, if the hot junction is in the process and the cj is at ambient, then the corrected output is the difference between the two. Hope this clears things up.
P: 8
 Quote by Integral Sam, ...you use a thermocouple which has linear response in your region of interest.
on an exponential curve? surely you refer to the indication system (thermocouple and indicator), the pair may have linearity limits?

 Quote by sam024 the greater the range of the measuring instrument, the less accuracy you will have.
Are we confusing accuracy with resolution?

 Quote by c1a3m1 ...range from 20-300oC? as the range of the thermocouple is much higher, does this make it inaccurate?
Every instrument is inaccurate !?! only the magnitude of the error varies.
If you want the best accuracy then you could consider a resistance thermometer as these are generally considered to be better for this kind of temperature range.
Thermocouples are fine if you have a decent indicator - the question now becomes ... "what kind of accuracy do you want?"
Emeritus