Technical Blog

An Introduction to Positek's Submersible Position Sensors

Positek manufactures a range of submersible position sensors used in off-shore oil mining equipment, wastewater treatment plants, and other subsea and underwater applications.

The mining industry, as well as other marine-related sectors, use a variety of equipment, underwater vehicles, drones, and small submarines that need position sensors for feedback and control. Ordinary position sensor technology is not suitable for the conditions in which these pieces of machinery are subjected to. Instead of conventional sensors, a submersible sensor with the correct specifications is needed.

Submersible sensors are used to measure different conditions such as water depth, level, and pressure. These sensors need to offer the same reliability as a robust LVDT or potentiometer, yet sturdy enough to withstand the extreme conditions inherent in many of the applications that use them.

Applications of submersible sensor technology by Positek

Positek's range of submersible sensors is categorised as either linear or tilt. These sensors range from 10 bar to 350 bar. A 10 bar sensor can function at depths of 100 meters and subject to a maximum underwater pressure of 150 psi. On the other hand, a 350 bar sensor can work at a maximum depth of 3500 meters and withstand up to a 5000 psi.

One of the main challenges with submersible sensors required for similar applications is the lack of standardisation. Buyers need to have every linear position sensor used for subsea applications customised. Unfortunately, customised sensors are more expensive than off-the-shelf options. But Positek offers buyers with an affordable submersible linear sensor in standard specifications, while at the same time also provide customers with the opportunity to request for customised sensors if needed.

Apart from the superior capabilities of Positek sensors, customers can expect that each device is manufactured using marine grade stainless steel which can withstand corrosive conditions. Positek also makes sensors with intrinsic safety compliant features suitable for above-ground applications in the mining industry.

Submersible sensors are also used as a waterproof alternative to linear potentiometers. Although designed for high-pressure underwater conditions, these sensors are also suitable for situations where the assembly is exposed to excess amounts of moisture.

Another application for specialised submersible linear transducer manufactured by Positek is a leak detection device within the engine of a more massive machine. In this specific type of assembly, the sensor is connected to a float in the liquid and gives out accurate real-time readings of the fluid levels. When there is a leak, the sensor will detect sudden fluid drop and shut down the operation automatically to prevent further damage.

Positek's inductive submersible sensors have either watertight construction or allow armature flooding without causing damage to the internal components, hence making the sensor package more versatile than a conventional LVDT.

Positek's range of submersible sensors

One of the most popular submersible sensors offered by Positek is the S120. It is the submersible equivalent of the P100 cylinder sensor which features a more extensive housing for electronics and a wet mate high-pressure connector. The environment sealing of the S120 is 350 bar combined for both water and hydraulic pressure. It is a compact unit which is perfect for limited-space installations while remaining highly-responsive through its entire length.

Aside from the S120 which is a linear submersible position sensor, Positek also has submersible rotary and tilt sensors with the same level of robustness and durability needed for industrial applications.

Are Positek sensors suitable for all types of environments?

Positek's submersible sensors are specifically designed for industrial and rugged applications. The highest underwater pressure a Positek sensor can withstand is 5000 psi. These sensors are not only built to endure stress but other environmental elements as well such as extreme temperature and bacteria that may destroy the material.

Marine-grade stainless steel casing and housing make these sensors highly adaptable to varying conditions in underwater applications. All of Positek's sensors are built to have infinite resolution, measurement repeatability, and longer lifecycle compared with other conventional sensor technologies.

What's excellent about Positek is that we also offer customers the option to custom-build sensors according to their desired specifications. Although we have an extensive off-the-shelf inventory of standard linear, rotary, and tilt sensors, we also understand that some applications may have unique requirements that conventional sensors cannot meet. Our engineering team is available to help you with the design process as soon as you make the call. Each one of our custom-built sensors is manufactured in an on-site facility and ready within days after you place your order.

Article published on: 25/03/2019