Resistance Temperature Detectors (RTD)

Definition - What does Resistance Temperature Detectors (RTD) mean?

Resistance Temperature Detectors are the sensors which are used to measure temperature by determining the resistance of the temperature detector element. Most of the elements contain a fine coiled wire that is wrapped around a glass core or ceramic. The element is constructed from pure materials such as nickel, platinum or copper. They are being used from many years to measure temperature in the industrial and laboratory processes and have developed a reputation for repeatability, stability and accuracy.

Petropedia explains Resistance Temperature Detectors (RTD)

Resistance Temperature Detectors are made in a variety of forms and offer more accuracy, stability and repeatability than thermocouples. Unlike the thermocouples which use the seebeck effect, the resistance thermometers make use of electrical resistance and to be operated, they need a power source. While the thermomistors are inexpensive and thermocouples handle high temperatures, the temperature detectors have various advantages such as their precision, accuracy, good hysteresis characteristics and long-term stability. Other advantages of the Resistance Temperature Detectors include:

  • Vibration resistance.
  • Better response time.
  • Relative inexpensiveness.
  • Over wire-wounds with smaller dimensions.

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