Measurement of Salt in Pellet Form Using Laser Level Transmitters

In this application example, the LM80 laser level transmitter is used to measure salt in pellet form. The LM80 Laser is a high performance laser transmitter that precisely measures level, distance and position over long ranges in extreme environments.

The key features of the LM80 laser level transmitter as shown in Figure 1 are:

  • Maintenance free, non-contact continuous level sensor
  • Range up to 100 m (330 ft) for level applications
  • Range up to 150 m (500 ft) for positioning applications
  • Auto-ranging to measure all levels
  • Available non condensing heated optics prevent condensation issues
  • No Beam Divergence = No False Echoes
  • Rugged and Robust Aluminum Enclosure
  • CSA, ATEX and IECEx potentially explosive atmosphere ratings
  • Easy and intuitive setup
  • No calibration required
  • Continuous level monitoring for granular solid materials and opaque liquids
  • Measures solids and opaque liquids at any angle
  • Last Pulse Detection for Measurement with Light and Moderate Dust
  • Built-in laser pointer for accurate alignment in narrow or tall vessels

LM80 laser level transmitter

Figure 1. LM80 laser level transmitter

Application Example

Successful application of the LM80 laser level transmitter was performed at a salt plant in the Midwest of the US as shown in Figure 2.

Salt Plant

Figure 2. Salt plant in the Midwest of the US

The application involves salt measurement in pellet form. Previously the customer tried to use ultrasonic and radar transmitters unsuccessfully in the application. In this application the bins have support beams that resulted in the ultrasonic and radar signals detecting the beams instead of the product after the bin was 30% empty.

As a result 70% of the bin measurement was not accurate. Also, the bin filled with a peak in the middle and emptied with slump in the middle. Even in the area having no metal beams, this "Peaking and Slumping" caused poor performance from the ultrasonic and radar transmitters.

On top of the bin an LM80 was mounted and aimed to avoid the metal supports. The narrow width of the laser beam helped position the laser beam between the metal supports.

The results were very good and the LM80 responded with the correct measurement, verified with a tape measure. Dust density did not appear to be an issue for the LM80 in the pellet application, however measuring salt when it is fine can sometimes present a problem due to high dust levels. For applications where dust becomes very thick, the ABB Guided Wave Impulse Radar transmitters positioned to avoid the metal supports can be used.

About ABB Analytical Measurements

ABB is a leader in power and automation technologies that enable utility and industry customers to improve performance while lowering environmental impact. The ABB Group of companies operates in around 100 countries and employs about 145,000 people.

Process Analytics

ABB’s capability embraces one of the largest process, emissions & laboratory analyzer portfolios in the world, performing real-time analysis of the chemical composition and/or physical properties of a process sample or stream.

ABB’s advanced solutions combine analyzers, advanced process control, process and application knowledge to improve process performance, productivity, capacity and safety of our customers processes.

ABB’s integrated analyzer systems reduce the cost and increase the reliability of your plant-wide process analytics.

Founded in 1973, ABB Analytical Measurements (formerly Bomem Inc) designs, manufactures and markets high-performance, affordable FT-IR / FT-NIR spectrometers as well as turnkey analytical solutions for Petroleum, Chemical, Life Sciences, Semiconductor, Academic, Metallurgy, OEM industries and spectroradiometers for Remote Sensing/Aerospace market.

ABB capabilities encompass one of the largest portfolios on the market for laboratory, at-line and process FT-IR/FT-NIR analyzers. They perform real-time analysis of the chemical composition and/or physical properties of a process sample stream.

ABB’s advanced solutions combine analyzers, advanced process control, data management, process and application knowledge to improve the operational performance, productivity, capacity and safety of industrial processes for customers while lowering environmental impact.

This information has been sourced, reviewed and adapted from materials provided by ABB Analytical Measurements.

For more information on this source, please visit ABB Analytical Measurements.

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