New firmware release: better control, faster data, and new features

Alicat portable flow meter screenOne way an Alicat meter or controller stands out from the rest is how much control you have over what it does, and how it does it. We pioneered user flexibility with our input screen. Now, you’ve gained an added level of control: user-selectable engineering units, among other things. With the new 6Vx firmware update, you’ll notice this and other improvements on new and updated instruments.

Change units without a factory visit

That’s right, you can switch units between several types! You’ll have full control of units of pressure, temperature, volume, standard volume or mass. The full list is on our Engineering Units page.

  • Volumetric, standard or true mass flow: measure mass per unit of time (as in, g/hr) for any gas on the Gas Select table in your instrument, or standard volume per unit of time (sccm), or measure volumetric flow (cc/m)
  • Change scale: (such as from sccm to Sm3/day)
  • Change locality units: US to European, or vice versa (as from SCFM to SLPM)
  • Match another STP standard: from “standard metric” (SLPM) to “normal metric” (LnPM)

More things to love

Generally, the interface screens are clearer and better organized.

  • “Free range” STP: Enter any STP you want for your operating conditions, not just a couple of common standards
  • More readable: Primary parameters in the center of the screen have a type label, beneath the number
  • Faster data rates, by filtering your data line queries down to your essential parameters, you’ll get more frequent updates
  • Input source: Controllers will take your setpoint input from either the local panel or through the serial port, without first switching the setpoint source. Both sources are active full time.
  • Totalizer’s remainder: For controllers with the totalizer option, the display shows both the remaining amount in the batch as well as the amount dispensed
  • Tare barometric changes: Portable meters with a barometric sensor (available only on new portables) will offer selections of barometric pressure, gauge stream pressure, and absolute stream pressure – and you’ll be able to tare to barometric pressure changes too. This can be critical in applications that are venting to (or drawing from) air, as local environmental conditions are then interactive with the system.

Can you get the update?

The new firmware is compatible with Alicat instruments of serial number 80,000 and higher, with a few rare exceptions (and configuration exceptions as noted above). You can have your firmware updated—at your request—at your instrument’s next annual recalibration. If you’re concerned that you may have one of the exceptions, our apps engineers can check for you.

The 6Vx firmware will be installed on new instruments shipped after March 3rd, 2016.