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4. Configuration of Sheathed Thermocouple Assemblies

Sheathed thermocouple assemblies differ from thermocouple assemblies in their smaller design and their bending properties, which means that they can also be used in measurement locations that are difficult to access. In addition, they are vibration-proof and pressure-resistant. A sheathed cable consisting of a heat-resistant and corrosion-resistant metal tube (sheath tube), in which the thermocouples are surrounded on all sides by a highly compacted mineral insulation powder, is used in the manufacture of sheathed thermocouple assemblies. The insulation powder insulates the thermocouple wires both from one another and from the sheath tube. The outer sheath tube diameter ranges from 0.25 to 15mm. Sheathed cables of this type are manufactured according to special procedures, which involve drawing the entire material compound (protection tube, insulation and thermocouple wires), through appropriate deformation steps (e.g. rolling and drawing using intermediate annealing), from an outer diameter of approx. 15 to 25mm to the desired end diameter (0.25 to 15mm) and winding it up in the form of cable coils.

The sheathed thermocouple manufacturing process cuts the required sheathed cable to length and straightens it. The thermocouple wires are then welded together at one cable end (measuring point), with the sheath tube being sealed at this end and an end cap made of the same material. At the other cable end, the so-called junction, the free ends of the thermocouples are connected to a suitable plug or a ceramic base, for example, as requested by the customer.

Figure 3 shows a sheathed thermocouple assembly with connected standard plug:


a. Standard plug (with round solid contacts made of thermocouple material, other plugs and connection techniques (e.g. using ceramic base or compensating cable) are shown in our R9 list)
b. Sheathed cable consisting of c), d) and e)
c. Metal/sheath tube (outer sheath)
d. Insulation powder
e. Thermocouple
f. End cap
g. Measuring point (junction of the two thermocouple wires) g1: insulated from the outer sheath (standard configuration) g2: welded with the sheath (at the customer’s request)

Go to Section 5  (Internal and External Reference Junctions)

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