G. Raymond Peacock

G. Raymond Peacock

G. Raymond Peacock

Stories by G. Raymond Peacock

Thoughts on Commissioning a New Sensor

You've evaluated the measurement demands of your application, specified the sensor's requirements, and purchased the new device. But you're not finished yet. You still have to commission the sensor. In this phase, you're simply ensuring the sensing device is functioning and will continue to do so for an appropriate length of time. Here are some ideas on how you can make the process go as well as possible.

Commissioning a New Sensor

During the past year, I've been discussing some of the best practices required to successfully add a new sensor to your operations. This month, I'll examine the next to the last step in the process: commissioning the sensor. In this phase, you're simply ensuring the sensing device is functioning and will continue to do so for an appropriate length of time.

Location, Location, Location

The number of sensors being deployed is increasing exponentially across a wide array of industries and applications. Getting them up and running is only half the battle. If they are installed in such a way that accessing them for service or replacement is prohibitively difficult and costly, you've sacrificed the benefits of having them in the first place. Don't overlook the obvious.

Installing Your New Sensor

Most people believe the least demanding part of making a measurement is installing the sensor, and sometimes it is. But in modern, complex manufacturing processes, the expense of installing the device can be greater than the cost of the sensor itself, and the process can be daunting and time consuming. So let's look at three key installation issues: service access, mounting and protection, and signal connections.

Check It Out!

This is the ninth essay in a series expanding on an article I wrote for Sensors titled A Twelve-Step Sensor Selection Checklist. In July, I talked about acquiring the sensor and the expert technical services you require. This month, I'll focus on making sure you get what you asked for.

Be Certain, Be Diligent

What appears to be the end of the sensor purchasing process is just another test for the professional engineer. You've gone to great lengths to specify, find, and acquire the right device for the application. Don't blow it in the homestretch by not checking to see if it's the right sensor, with the right performance capabilities.

Sensor Purchases-Remember the Big Picture

When you choose a sensor for a project, you're also establishing a relationship with an expert organization and its key people. Your vendor will help you and your organization get the most from its sensor. If you buy from a catalog or base your purchase decision solely on price, you'll miss the added benefits a sensor partner brings to your operations.

Get an Expert with Your Sensor

This is the eighth essay in a series expanding on an article I wrote for Sensors titled A Twelve-Step Sensor Selection Checklist. In May, I talked about the process of soliciting bids. This month, I'll focus on acquiring a sensor, or measurement device, and expert technical services.

Working with Your Purchasing Department to Buy Sensors

You've done the homework described in the article I wrote for Sensors titled A Twelve-Step Sensor Selection Checklist. Now it's time to send your specification to the vendors you've chosen. You're probably working with your company's purchasing department, a process that has its pluses and minuses.

Soliciting Bids for Sensors

Continuing with my series on the twelve-step sensor-selection process, this month I'll look at the best practices for soliciting bids for the devices you've specified. Remember, your aim is to obtain price quotes from two to four qualified suppliers. The vendors should meet the requirements established by your purchasing department. At a minimum, they must be stable businesses, with reasonable expertise as attested to by several users. And they must have an established measurement quality assurance program, such as an ISO 9001 certification.