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Ideas for using the software combined with the instrumentation

Calorimeter

An useful idea to take the most out of this software is using it combined with the supported instrumentation to build a simple calorimeter.

The voltcraft power supply can be used as a power source to power up a device that generates heat. The Victor multimeter used as a temperature sensor can monitor heat gain and loss.

All needed mathematics and physics are embedded in the software, so let's see step by step how to set up this experimental apparatus.

Firstly we need to engineer and build our apparatus. We need to create an insulated chamber where to place our heat source immersed in the appropriate fluid, which has to have a good heat exchange rate to take the most heat from the device, but not too high to prevent heat loss to environment. We place the device in a known mass of this fluid and wire it to the power supply, then we need to put a stirring device, such as a magnetic stirrer, to prevent temperature differences in the fluid. We put the termocouple in the fluid at an appropriate distance from the heat source and we close the chamber tight. Then we insulate this chamber by making a vacuum chamber around it our using an insulating material.

We can now link our instruments to the computer and start InstruMan software. We need to set up in the Heat Exchange tab the Heat Capacity of our fluid. We can insert an expression that will be integrated by the software, or we can use a constant value.

By default software is provided with expressions for Air and Water. Now we're ready to start our experiment by creating a new log in the left panel and pressing the Start Everything button in the bottom toolbar (the one with a stopwatch icon).

Software will automatically record electric power consumed and heat produced, so when the experiment is finished you can export data and charts to Excel and you can further elaborate it, by calculating yield and power loss for example.

Last edited Aug 10, 2016 at 3:51 PM by paoloinfante, version 3