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Developing techniques for dynamic pressures and temperatures

NPL's temperature team are working with international partners to develop traceable dynamic temperature and pressure measurement, as part of project DynPt.

The need

Dynamic measurements of pressure and temperature are widely performed in the research, development and manufacturing processes of engines, and activities related to ammunition and explosion safety. However, current practice to calibrate pressure and temperature sensors under static conditions significantly limits the achievable measurement accuracy, resulting in errors of up to 10 % when the sensors are used in environments where pressure and temperature conditions are dynamically changing. New methods and measurement standards are needed to overcome this limitation in accuracy and to establish SI traceability for dynamic measurements.

The need for better accuracy and reliability of dynamic measurements of pressure and temperature is driven by a variety of industrial sectors. For example, there is an urgent need for measurements performed inside an internal combustion engine. Precise knowledge about in-cylinder pressure and temperature is important for better understanding of the combustion process, which in turn enables optimisation of engine power and fuel consumption.  In manufacturing processes, such as injection moulding, better process control through improved dynamic pressure measurements will result in higher product quality levels and more efficient use of materials and energy, and thus improve the competitiveness of applicable European industries.  

This work is part of the EMPIR project DynPt.

The impact

Traceable dynamic measurement standards and methods developed within this project will enable calibration of pressure and temperature sensors at conditions that aim to resemble actual use. This will significantly improve the accuracy and reliability of dynamic measurement performed in industries such as manufacturing, automotive, maritime and safety testing.

New sensor technologies developed and characterised in this project will improve the reliability of measurements performed under harsh conditions, such as those made inside an internal combustion engine. This will support engine manufacturers in the development of engines with improved fuel efficiency and reduced emissions and thus boost the competitiveness of European companies adopting these new technologies.

Uptake and dissemination of project outcomes will be ensured by close interaction with industry during the course of the project through Stakeholder Committees, workshops, training courses, seminars and conferences.

As a result of this project, new facilities for calibrating and testing temperature sensors in a dynamic way under various process conditions will be established and made available to the metrological, scientific and industrial community. This will effectively promote the transition from static to dynamic calibrations within the temperature measurement community. Recommendations for temperature measurements under harsh conditions will also be given.

Find out more about the project:


Read more about harsh enviornment thermometry

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