Temperature controller users prefer more loops

Source: ControlDesign.com

Feb 06, 2006

MULTI-LOOP industrial electronic temperature controllers, purchased for multiple-zone applications, are controlling an increasing number of loops, according to a new study by Venture Development Corp..

Among users controlling temperature loops with microprocessor-based, multiple-loop (MP-ML) controllers, more are buying the devices with more control loops. Though they’re purchasing more costly MP-ML controllers, users can control more complex processes and more equipment with fewer controllers.

In its survey of end users, OEMs and systems integrators, VDC found the purchasers of MP-ML temperature controllers chose two-loop MP-ML controllers most often, and project this will remain the case, but at a lower percentage share. For a significant share of the survey respondents, the most typical deployment of control loops will shift to four or more, with the largest gain expected for eight-loop controllers.

To meet this shifting market demand, the study adds MP-ML suppliers offer modular products made up of two and four-loop controllers, from which they form units with eight or more loops. These can be less expensive to produce than manufacturing separate eight and eight-plus loop controllers. These also have the added attractiveness of providing easy expansion. VDC says many users already purchase modular MP-ML controllers, and expects more to follow in the future.

Typical Control Loops Required in MP-ML Temperature Controllers
(% of Users Responding)

In 2005

2 Loops: 48%
3 Loops: 14%
4 Loops: 15%
5 Loops: 5%
6 Loops: 4%
8 Loops: 5%
Other: 9%

Expected in 2010

2 Loops: 35%
3 Loops: 9%
4 Loops: 17%
5 Loops: 9%
6 Loops: 5%
8 Loops: 15%
Other: 10%