Advanced gas monitors signal technological change is in the air at Weftec 2023
At Weftec 2023, MSA Safety exhibited its Ultima X5000 gas monitor, which features remote access capabilities, a prominent LED display and self-calibrating sensors.
Gas monitors play an essential role in ensuring the safety of workers, preventing accidents and easing the process of compliance with various codes and regulations.
Remote access and intelligent sensor technology continue to enable new functionality for gas monitors and other field devices.
MSA Safety’s Ultima X5000 gas monitor is one example of a product that leverages these advances.
Gas monitors are crucial safety devices in industries such as chemical manufacturing, oil and gas, mining and wastewater treatment. Used to detect the presence of potentially harmful or toxic gases in the environment, gas monitors play a vital role in ensuring the safety of workers, preventing accidents and easing the process of compliance with various codes and regulations. Moreover, as with many other field instruments and industrial devices, new trends such as remote access, intelligent sensors and cloud integration continue to shape their development. At Weftec 2023, MSA Safety exhibited its Ultima X5000 gas monitor, which capitalizes on several of these technologies.
Remote access: Through the use of Bluetooth wireless technology and MSA Safety’s X/S Connect app, end-users’ mobile phones can be used as human machine interface (HMI) screens to check gas monitor statuses, receive alerts, modify set-points and alarms, initiate and monitor sensor calibrations, and reduce overall setup time. According to Angela Sauceda, marketing communications manager at MSA Safety, remote access through the X/S Connect app can allow for easier interaction with gas monitors that are mounted on ceilings or in hard-to-reach places, as well as allowing operators to remain in their vehicles when interacting with outdoor gas monitors in regions with extreme climates.
LED display: Building from technology absorbed through MSA Safety’s acquisition of General Monitors, the company’s gas monitors also feature large, bright LED screens that display instrument status indicators such as power, fault and alarm notifications. The screens aim to help operators identify status changes at a glance more easily, even if they are doing so from a distance, Sauceda says.
Self-calibrating, intelligent sensors: The X5000 also features dual sensor technology that allows it to monitor two different types of gas at once. In addition, the product uses a process called diffusion supervision to warn users if a sensor has become blocked and is unable to detect gas. Using an on-board acoustic microphone and software algorithms, the sensors can measure the amount of sound moving across the surface of their inlet. If a sensor is blocked by a material such as ice or dirt, the microphone is able to detect a difference in sound and alert users that accurate gas detection is being obstructed. Previously, operators would have needed to manually check sensors for such blockages at regular intervals, and may have had no real-time means of recognizing when one had occurred.
MSA Safety also exhibited its Sentry IO controller, which enables seamless integration with the company’s other products by pre-populating the details of HART-enabled gas and flame detectors.