Integrated potentiometer control (IPC)
The integrated potentiometer (IPC) is an optional feature available on Alicat flow controllers that allows for control of the device setpoint via a knob on top of the unit. The IPC knob can be used to easily control the full scale analog input range of the device. The new setpoint displays on the screen without the any need for interacting with the instrument’s touchpad display interface.
Using the potentiometer
To operate your controller using an IPC, be sure that your setpoint source is set to Analog by pressing MENU > CONTROL > SETPT SOURCE > ANALOG. (Instruments ordered with the IPC option come with this selection already made.) To use the display touchpad to adjust the setpoint, change the setpoint source to SERIAL/FRONT PANEL in the Setpoint Source menu.
Note: The IPC option is not available on units that are ordered with D-sub (9-pin or 15-pin) or locking 6-pin industrial connectors.
Potentiometer in action: Burner control
The use of a potentiometer can be demonstrated with the burner control application and a carved pumpkin (the Alicat-O’-Lantern). In this application, it is easy to see setpoint changes and the associated flowrate adjustments by the brightness of the flame.
For this setup, a 2-1/2 inch Bunsen burner fed by a can of propane was placed inside the Alicat-O’-Lantern. Flow was precisely controlled using a mass flow controller equipped with a potentiometer.