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When Buying a Benchtop Test Chamber, What Should You Look For?

May 17

Several variables influence the size of the test chamber you'll need. The first is the DUT's size—a DUT that is overly large or heavy requires more room. There are also material qualities (which absorb heat and moisture differently), live loads (which create heat and demand extra testing space), and the density of the DUTs to consider. In order to maintain enough airflow, most tests need a ratio of at least one to three (the volume of the DUTs to the workspace).

A benchtop test chamber can be the ideal alternative for you if all of the following factors are considered. They may improve testing efficiency while also giving you more flexibility in how you set up your lab—after all, some versions are designed to fit on tables or counters.

You may divide 25 loads among four chambers instead of evaluating 100 devices all at once. Not only will you be able to complete the same amount of testing in less time, but you will also be able to isolate any possible difficulties to a single chamber.

If you're short on room, rack-and-stack models may help you get the most out of your testing. Here are some things to consider when purchasing a benchtop.

Capabilities And Components Of Benchtop Test Chamber

Benchtop test chambers have an interior volume of 1 to 8 cubic feet and are meant to be placed on top of desks and tables. Because of their compact size, they're ideal for testing smaller components and gaining access to the inside workspace.

On benchtops, long-term experiments may be performed at a constant, steady-state temperature and humidity. Depending on the model, temperatures may vary from -70°C to 180°C (-94°F to 356°F).

To allow heating tests, these chambers are equipped with open ceramic-core nichrome heaters that can alter temperatures to within 0.5°C.

Furthermore, the cooling system on a benchtop is normally a self-contained, small, mechanical, single-stage refrigeration system.

These chambers' usual humidity testing range is 10% RH to 95% RH. High humidity sensors, dry nitrogen purges, desiccant air dryers for dry air purge, and recirculating desiccant air dryers may all be added to improve the humidity range, albeit at a cost.

These chambers are intended to be used on tables and benches, but they may also be put on a floor platform to boost mobility and lab testing adaptability. Stacking may also conserve space in the lab, provide more test space, and allow you to perform numerous experiments at once with reasonable ease.

You can monitor and regulate chambers from afar with modern kinds.

Knowing the basics of a benchtop test chamber's features and instrumentation is beneficial, but what questions should you ask a manufacturer before purchasing one?

Consider The Following Factors When Purchasing A Benchtop Test Chamber

You're going to have a lot of questions for the manufacturer, given the large investment required. There are a few considerations to make when selecting a benchtop test chamber.

Make sure the manufacturer understands your testing requirements. It ultimately comes down to proving that your products meet industry standards. If a manufacturer cannot guarantee it or fails to satisfy key conditions, you will be unhappy (and out a lot of money). Experts in the test chamber will strive to comprehend your issues and provide relevant answers. In order to find the optimum solution for you, they may ask about your DUTs (size, number, and whether or not they release heat during testing), change-rate requirements, standards you're striving for, and the ideal size of your chamber.

Check that your power levels are correct. When riding on a tight timetable or doing steady-state testing, having adequate power is essential. Make a note of all the test scenarios you'll be doing, as well as the power levels necessary for each. Again, a competent manufacturer will guide you throughout the process to ensure that you have taken into account all relevant factors.

Keep the performance range in mind. Be as comfortable with power as you are with all potential testing circumstances. Even though the normal range of each test chamber meets your temperature or humidity requirements, it doesn't guarantee it's ideal for you. These limitations do not take into consideration circumstances where very high temperatures must be maintained throughout the testing procedure.

While this is feasible for short periods of time, most chambers aren't meant to function at the extremes of their ranges all of the time. Consider adding extra power to meet your requirements. If you're uncertain, consult the manufacturer.

You'll need plenty of room. Size is an obvious factor even in a tiny chamber such as a benchtop. Is there enough room on your desk for you? Is it best to have a bigger chamber, like a walk-in, or stack a few smaller benchtops? While planning your lab space, think about power sources and how much room you'll need to move about the test chamber.

Is there any water on the premises? If you want to undertake humidity testing, you'll need a water supply. Check your lab space to make sure your workbench can easily connect to your supply. Hoses may make the ultimate placement of your benchtop more flexible, but be aware that they may interfere with other tasks or provide a safety concern. You'll also need water if you go with the more space-saving, but more costly, water-cooling option.

Chambers will need regular maintenance and service. Chambers may last for almost a decade if they are properly maintained. Just like the vehicle you drive almost every day, it's easy to lose track of your automobile's maintenance and repair schedule. You may prolong the life of your chamber and increase your return on investment by working with the right manufacturer.

While the compactness and convenience of use of benchtop test chambers are advantages, there are many factors to consider before purchasing one. Create a list of all conceivable testing scenarios to verify that your new chamber fulfills testing requirements while adjusting to your lab's specific environment. Think about if renting or renovating is a better option. After you've gone through this checklist, search for a test chamber manufacturer that can help you with everything from the purchase procedure to the installation.