[time-nuts] Environmental sensor recommendations.

Dr. David Kirkby drkirkby at kirkbymicrowave.co.uk
Thu Apr 5 11:27:51 EDT 2018

On 5 April 2018 at 15:44, John Green <wpxs472 at gmail.com> wrote:

> Why has no one mentioned thermocouples?
> I had some experience with thermistors a few years back designing thermal
> attenuators and equalizers for CATV. NTC thermistors can have a large
> change of resistance for a unit change in temperature. They aren't linear,
> but there are formulas for computing resistance vs temp. PTC thermistors
> have a much smaller change per unit change in temp., but are much more
> linear. And, they are susceptible to self heating, which makes things
> interesting. If I remember correctly, in my research something called an
> RTD was supposed to be the king when it came to accuracy and repeatability.
> As someone else has stated, the IC devices are supposed to be quite good,
> but you have to interface with them.

Keysights nano volt / micro ohm meter takes


can do direct SPRT, RTD, Thermistor, and Thermocouple measurements

SPRT = Standard Platinum Resistance Thermometer

I don't claim to know much about this, but the uncertainty quoted for the
SPRT probes with that meter is 0.003 deg C.

When I Google SPRT probes, I see they are incredibly expensive - many
thousands of USD each.

I'm a bit puzzled there seem to be a number of 3-wire platinum resistance
thermometers. I can understand using 4-wires for a Kelvin connection, but
can't understand the use of 3-wires.

Of course, for environmental monitor in a lab, one is most unlikely to need
very high accuracy.


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