SYSCON Sensors Blog

Choosing the Right Thermal Analysis System for Your Foundry

Jul 28, 2023 12:32:26 PM / by Townsend Thomas, Jr.


When it comes to ensuring accurate temperature measurements in a foundry, the choice of a thermal analysis system is extremely important. The right pyrometer is essential for accurately monitoring and controlling temperatures in metal casting to achieve optimal casting quality. In this blog post, we will explore the two main types of thermal analysis systems: handheld and wall-mounted pyrometers. Understanding the differences between these and the advantages of each will help you make an informed decision when selecting your thermal analysis system.

Handheld vs. Wall-Mounted Pyrometers

Handheld pyrometers for foundries are portable devices that measure and analyze temperatures in a metal casting environment. They typically consist of a compact pyrometer and a display unit for reading and interpreting temperature data. Because they’re handheld, these devices give foundry professionals the flexibility to move around the facility and measure temperatures at different locations as needed. They are lightweight, easy to handle, and often equipped with ergonomic features for comfortable use over extended periods. Unlike handheld systems, wall-mounted pyrometers are stationary and installed at strategic locations within the foundry facility.

Factors to Consider When Making Your Choice

Both types of thermal analysis systems can help foundries accurately regulate temperature and achieve high-quality end products. Which is best suited to your operation depends on your specific needs and priorities. Below are some key factors to consider when making your choice.

Mobility and Accessibility

Handheld systems allow operators to measure temperatures at different locations within the foundry. This is particularly useful for large or complex casting setups where measurements need to be taken at various points. However, the temperature reading on handheld devices is visible only to the operator who’s taking it. Wall-mounted units make temperature readings visible to more people, but the long wire that connects the wall-mounted unit to the measurement lance limits its reach.

Durability and Environmental Factors

Foundries are harsh environments. Your chosen pyrometer should be able to withstand high temperatures, dust, moisture, and potential impact from the metal casting process. Handheld pyrometers may be more exposed to harsh conditions in the foundry environment, making them more susceptible to damage from heat, dust, or accidental drops. They often require extra protective measures to ensure longevity. This is less of a concern with wall-mounted systems.

Calibration and Maintenance

Calibration ensures accurate temperature measurement in foundry operations. For consistent and reliable readings, ensure you’re prepared to follow the recommended calibration procedures for the system you choose. Be sure you’re aware of maintenance needs, such as battery replacement or sensor cleaning, to ensure efficient and uninterrupted operation. A major benefit of wall-mounted pyrometers is that they typically require less maintenance than handheld ones. This is because they are fixed in one location and often have protective enclosures that help safeguard them from environmental stresses.

Cost and Budget 

Compare the costs of handheld and wall-mounted pyrometers, including the initial purchase, installation (if applicable), and any ongoing expenses such as calibration or maintenance. Consider your budget limitations and the long-term value provided by each type of pyrometer.

Operator Expertise and Training

Handheld pyrometers may be more intuitive for operators to use, while wall-mounted pyrometers may require specific knowledge for installation and configuration. Consider the skill level and training availability of your staff when making your choice.

Ultimately, there is no one right answer to what type of thermal analysis system is best. The best pyrometer for your foundry depends on all the factors above, and a system that is perfect for one foundry may not work for another. At SYSCON, we offer multiple temperature control solutions to optimize casting quality and foundry safety. Our experts are ready and available to talk you through the process of selecting the system that best fits your needs. For more tips on optimizing your foundry operation, browse our blog.