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Pressure-Application Device for Testing Pressure SensorsA portable pressure-application device has been designed and built for use in testing and calibrating piezoelectric pressure transducers in the field. The device generates pressure pulses of known amplitude. A pressure pulse (in contradistinction to a steady pressure) is needed because in the presence of a steady pressure, the electrical output of a piezoelectric pressure transducer decays rapidly with time. The device includes a stainless- steel compressed-air-storage cylinder of 500 cu cm volume. A manual hand pump with check valves and a pressure gauge are located at one end of the cylinder. A three-way solenoid valve that controls the release of pressurized air is located at the other end of the cylinder. Power for the device is provided by a 3.7-V cordless-telephone battery. The valve is controlled by means of a pushbutton switch, which activates a 5 V to +/-15 V DC-to-DC converter that powers the solenoid. The outlet of the solenoid valve is connected to the pressure transducer to be tested. Before the solenoid is energized, the transducer to be tested is at atmospheric pressure. When the solenoid is actuated by the push button, pressurized air from inside the cylinder is applied to the transducer. Once the pushbutton is released, the cylinder pressure is removed from the transducer and the pressurized air applied to the transducer is vented, bringing the transducer back to atmospheric pressure. Before this device was used for actual calibration, its accuracy was checked with a NIST (National Institute of Standards and Technology) traceable calibrator and commercially calibrated pressure transducers. This work was done by Wanda Solano of Stennis Space Center and Greg Richardson of Lockheed Martin Corp.
Document ID
Document Type
Other - NASA Tech Brief
Date Acquired
August 21, 2013
Publication Date
March 21, 2002
Subject Category
Instrumentation and Photography
Report/Patent Number
NAS 1.83:04-00017-SSC
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.
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