Pt100 in class B or F 0.3 ? what does IEC 60751 say?

Perhaps you?ve already noticed that in some instances a Pt100 is specified with an accuracy class B or A. At other times, it has the class F 0.3 or F 0.15. This blog post talks about the specifications for Pt100 in the international IEC 60751 standard and explains the difference in accuracy classes.
Violated of a Pt100
The corrosion-resistant, platinum ?platinum? includes a high long-term stability. Furthermore, a Pt100 includes a high reproducibility and a low non-linearity. Other very helpful properties are a excellent thermal shock resistance and high measurement accuracy. Lastly, the wide temperature range which can be realised with a Pt100 makes it the most frequently used measuring element in industrial temperature measurement.
Meaning of the international IEC 60751 standard
For industry, standards are very important. They ensure that products have a very constant, traceable quality. In case a product is stated in accordance with international standards, all market participants can be confident that the characteristics described within it are met. Thus, a Pt100 relative to IEC 60751 always has the same base resistance values in addition to a defined tolerance curve. This allows the user, for instance, to replace a defective thermometer with a fresh one, and never have to readjust the control loop. Likewise, one controller can easily be exchanged for another, provided the latter includes a Pt100 input.
Differentiation between measuring resistor and thermometer
Fig. left: Pt100 in thin-film design
Fig. centre: Pt100, wire-wound, glass measuring resistor
Fig. right: Pt100, wire-wound, ceramic measuring resistor
With the revision of IEC 60751 in 2008, new accuracy classes and measuring ranges for Pt100s were introduced. Thus the standard differentiated between measuring resistors and resistance thermometers for the first time. A measuring resistor includes a platinum wire (wire-wound measuring resistor) or perhaps a platinum film (film measuring resistor) and is designed for installation in resistance thermometers. A resistance thermometer (c), however, by definition consists of:
exactly the same measuring resistor (a or b), installed in protective components
internal connecting wires and external terminals for connection to electrical measuring instruments
Mounting elements, connecting cables (d) or connection heads, based on thermometer version.
Comparison: Measuring resistor (a = wire-wound, b = film resistor) and resistance thermometer (c)
Development history for the IEC 60751 standard
IEC 60751 originally only recognised classes A and B for Pt100s. It did not differentiate between measuring resistors and thermometers. There was also no differentiation in the measuring resistances between wire-wound and film measuring resistances. Set off by complaints from their customers, the thermometer manufacturers (independently of every other) measured the accuracy of their own and third-party instruments. The effect: Thermometers with film measuring resistors show a different behaviour at higher temperatures than described in the standard. The standards committee took this into consideration in the revision of IEC 60751. The accuracy classes A and B for resistance thermometers were retained. Classes AA and C were added. The addition taken care of immediately customer demand for more accurate thermometers (class AA) and considers the greater inaccuracy of film measuring resistors at temperatures above 500 �C (class C).
Bases and results of the revision of the IEC 60751 standard
For the measuring resistors themselves, the standards committee has consequently introduced new classes. Tests show that a measuring resistor behaves differently under laboratory conditions than a measuring resistor installed in a thermometer. This behaviour affects the range of validity and the tolerance value. Thus it can happen a measuring resistor originally has class A ? the thermometer in which it is installed, however, has a different validity range. Also the tolerance value can thus be altered. In order to do justice to this fact, a separate table for measuring resistances was created. The differences in the temperature ranges between a wire-wound Pt100 and a Pt100 in thin-film design (film measuring resistor) are considered. Wire-wound Pt100?s are available in classes W 0.1 / W 0.15 / W 0.3 / W 0.6 (W for ?wire wound?). Film measuring resistors correspond to the classes F 0.1 ? F 0.6 (F for ?thin film?).
Measuring resistors
Wire-wound measuring resistors
Film measuring resistors
Tolerance value
[�C]
Class
Range of validity
[�C]
Class
Range of validity
[�C]
W 0.1
-100 ? + 350
F 0.1
0 ? +150
+/- (0.1 + 0,0017 * t)
W 0.15
-100 ? +450
F 0.15
-30 ? +300
+/- (0.15 + 0,002 * t)
W 0.3
-196 ? +660
F 0.3
-50 ? +500
+/- (0.3 + 0,005 * t)
W 0.6
-196 ? +660
F 0.6
-50 ? +600
+/- (0.6 + 0,01 * t)
Table 1: Accuracy classes and temperature ranges for Pt100 ? Measuring resistors relative to IEC 60751
Thermometers
Wire-wound measuring resistors
Film measuring resistors
Tolerance value
[�C]
Class
Range of validity
[�C]
Class
Range of validity
[�C]
AA
-50 ? +250
AA
0 ? +150
+/- (0.1 + 0,0017 * t)
A
-100 ? +450
A
-30 ? +300
+/- (0.15 + 0,002 * t)
B
-196 ? +600
B
-50 ? +500
+/- (0.3 + 0,005 * t)
C
-196 ? +600
C
-50 ? +600
+/- (0.6 + 0,01 * t)
Table 2: Accuracy classes and temperature ranges for Pt100 thermometers relative to IEC 60751
Differences between wire-wound and film measuring resistors
Apart from the temperature ranges, you can find further differences in both Pt100 versions. The most crucial is the design. A wire-wound measuring resistor is considerably larger than a Pt100 in thin-film design. Very short insertion lengths, which are often necessary in machine building, can only be achieved practically with a film measuring resistor. The low mass of the film measuring resistor leads to a shorter response time of the thermometer. Also, the vibration resistance is therefore better than with a thermometer with a wire-wound Pt100.
Meaning of the measuring resistor type
The thermometer marking relative to IEC 60751 does not specify the sort of measuring resistor. This is usually of no concern to an individual given that the specifications necessary for the application form are met. However, due to the different advantages of both types, it can be helpful in individual cases to learn the type installed. Thus, for example, a thermometer with a film measuring resistor could be fitted even where it is only immersed several millimetres into the medium. Whereas, with a wire-wound resistor ? simply because of its length ? a measuring error may appear as the measuring element may not be in a position to be fully immersed in the medium.
EExchange of experience
Film measuring resistors are the standard design in WIKA thermometers, unless the temperature range or an explicit customer request exclude them. What are your experiences with resistance thermometers? Which tolerance specification can you prefer and why? You are welcome to utilize the comment function or write if you ask me.
Note
You can get more info on resistance thermometers on the WIKA website or in the video: So how exactly does a resistance thermometer work? Inside our Technical Information ?Operating limits and tolerances of platinum resistance thermometers per EN 60751? you can find further information on the differences between wire-wound and film measuring resistors.
Also read our articles
Pt100 in 2-, 3- or 4-wire connection?
Pt100, Pt1000 or NTC ? which sensor is the right one?

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