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Macro Sensors has designed a high temperature and mild radiation resistant series of linear position sensors for use in the position measurement of nuclear steam and gas turbine control valves.

Constructed of stainless steel, the Hstar 750 Series hermetically sealed position sensors can withstand 400 temperature spikes and exposure to radiation at 3×107 Rads for 40 years.

These 3/4in (19mm) diameter AC-operated linear position sensors are being implemented in the rehab of power generation plants to better monitor the position of controls for increased efficiency and reduced operating costs.

In a typical power plant, steam turbines can contain a number of control valves – a reheat stop value, an interceptor valve, a governor valve and a throttle valve.

Plant operators must always know the position of governor and throttle valves and the position at start up and shut down of reheat stop and interceptor valves.

Typically, theses valves are fully open or fully closed, depending on the turbine start/stop status.

As modulating valves, the governor and throttle valves might be 25 or 40 per cent open, depending on power generation requirements.

Typically, plants have very precise control schemes for valve position to increase operating efficiency and save fuel.

As many turbines date back half a century, the Hstar position sensors are being implemented in plant rehabs to provide more reliable position feedback of control valves.

Operating within the harsh environment of a power or steam plant, the Hstar position sensors are claimed to provide accurate position feedback of valve position, providing output to remote electronics that can be monitored by operators.

Available in ranges of +/-0.050in (+/-1.25mm) to +/-10.0in (+/-250mm), Macro said that these sensors feature high resolution, excellent repeatability and low hysteresis as well as high sensitivity consistent with good linearity.

Electrical termination of the Hstar 750 Series is made through a sealed radial connector located near one end.

The radial connector results in a through-bore design that permits access to either or both ends of the unit’s core for better mechanical support and core guidance, plus easier clean out in dusty or dirty locations.

The radial connector also has a shorter installed length, making the length of the Hstar 750 Series sensors at least 2in shorter than comparable units, according to Macro, with an axially mounted connector for easier installation in tight spaces.

Macro Sensors offers several standard options for Hstar 750 units including metric threaded cores, smaller diameters and low mass cores.

On special order, the Hstar 750 sensors can be constructed for immersion in pressurised fluids.

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