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The PTB organized the successful TEMPERATURE '98 Conference

13.03.1998

The TEMPERATURE '98 Conference took place in Berlin on February 16 and 17, 1998. It was organized by the Physikalisch-Technische Bundesanstalt (PTB) in cooperation with the VDI/VDI - Gesellschaft für Meß- und Automatisierungstechnik (GMA, Association for Measuring and Automation Technology). The PTB chaired the conference and ensured the local organization.

In the field of process measuring technology alone, temperature sensors account for about 20% of all sensor types used and world-wide realize an annual production volume of approx. 1,8 billion German marks.

The TEMPERATURE '98 Conference is the only meeting in Germany to present and discuss in detail the different methods of temperature measurement. The 250 participants from industry (both manufacturers and users of temperature measuring instruments), calibration laboratories and verification authorities as well as from universities and research organizations contributed to very fruitful discussions being held which were aimed in particular at improving the measurement capabilities and accuracies attainable in temperature determination. This was also the prevailing subject of the contributions made in the discussions following the well attended lectures.

The meeting offered an almost complete survey of the capabilities existing in Germany for the traceable calibration of temperature measuring instruments, and of the measurement uncertainties achievable. It is typical of the high level of temperature measurement that at highest accuracy the sensor is no longer the only limiting element and that traceable calibration of the electrical measuring means must also be analyzed to an ever increasing extent. The procedures required for this purpose - both for AC resistance measuring bridges and for DC measuring instruments - were the subject of various contributions. Some of the procedures presented were relatively new even for the experts participating in the conference. This is true above all for the space-resolving methods on the basis of Raman backscattering of laser pulses in glass-fibre cables and temperature measurements with surface-wave radio sensors.

The development of new sensors definitely tends towards increasing miniaturization, up to micro-system engineering in the production of both contact sensors and non-contact measuring systems.

Particularly impressive was the broad spectrum of contributions dealing with radiation thermometry and space-resolving thermography which are meanwhile used in many fields where no reliable results can be obtained with contact thermometers. Practice-related temperature measurement methods are, however, to an increasing extent also developed with contact thermometers. This was shown by the contributions dealing with the determination of the surface temperature or the development of ultra-short temperature sensors for heat meters. On the whole, the conference offered a rather comprehensive survey of the present state of temperature measurement. The presentation of instruments by almost all German manufacturers or sellers of high-precision temperature measuring instruments and equipment proved to be another very good aspect of the conference.

It is planned to repeat the temperature conference every three years. The next meeting will probably again be held in Berlin in February 2001 and organized by the PTB.