Accuracy key when selecting measurement sensors, tank gauging systems
Accuracy and reliability are most important when selecting process level measurement sensors and inventory tank gauging systems, a recent market study shows. The research by Venture Development Corp . (VDC) asked end users, OEMs, and systems integrators what most influenced their choices for products and vendors in these areas.
Among those buying process level measurement sensors, 70% cited accuracy and 60% reliability as being most critical. Other product selection criteria identified included ease of maintenance, identified by 46%; durability, by 45%; and ease of calibration, by 43%. Among those buying inventory tank gauging systems, 79% named accuracy and 56% reliability as most important. Half (50%) cited durability, 49% ease of maintenance, and 44% ease of calibration. Inventory tank gauging is the use of level measuring for inventory storage and custody transfer applications as opposed to process control.
The study also asked users about “non-product” or “commercial” factors in selecting these products. The most important non-product vendor selection criteria noted by survey respondents for process level measurement sensor vendors were application assistance, 62%, and vendor reputation, 56%. Experience with vendor (53%), availability of parts (35%); and training on product (32%) were also noted. When asked about inventory tank gauging system vendors, respondents identified technical support, 62%, and customer service and support, 57%, as most important. Price (56%), availability of parts (39%), and applications assistance (39%) rounded out the top five criteria.
It was not possible to determine from the survey whether sensor and system performance or customer service and support were more important to respondents, said VDC. It observed that the most successful vendors in either area were likely to be those who excel in meeting user needs in both areas.
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—Jeanine Katzel, senior editor, Control Engineering,