Micro-sensor for ultra-low gas flow applications

Thermal mass device from Innovative Sensor Technology reads very low velocities.

07/13/2010


Innovative Sensor Technology (IST) has developed its new MFS02 micro flow sensor that utilizes thin film technology to layer platinum micro heaters and temperature sensors on an ultra sensitive polymer membrane. The company says this new sensor is capable of measuring thermal mass flow of gases in a range from 0.001 to 2 m/s (up to 50 m/s), and has a chip temperature range of -40 to +150 °C.

Micro flow sensor from ISTUsing the same thin-film construction philosophy as IST’s FS series flow sensors, the MFS02 employs a special glass substrate with an ultra thin polymer membrane to achieve extreme sensitivity. IST characterizes the polymer as having outstanding thermal, mechanical, and chemical behaviors, with reduced thermal conductivity of the polymer membrane allowing better thermal contrast and thus better sensitivity. Additionally, the sensor’s glass substrate allows for a much higher operating temperature, making the measurement of larger flow rates possible.

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IST’s micro-flow sensor allows customers to specify dimensions and resistor layouts to fit their own applications. The MFS02 features a rugged design that is well-suited for soldering, conductive gluing, or wire bonding. The sensor element can be mounted as an assembly on an electronic PCB or other carrier, and is ideal for mounting in a bypass flow assembly for differential pressure applications. An evaluation kit is available for user testing.

Watch a demonstration of much less sophisticated thermal mass flow technology in a basement video at the Control Engineering YouTube channel.

Edited by Peter Welander, pwelander@cfemedia.com

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