What are thermocouples?

Thermocouples are instruments for measuring temperature, based on the thermoelectric effect – a voltage is generated when two dissimilar metals are joined, which is proportional to the temperature difference. The voltage is called Electromotive Force (EMF) or the Seebeck voltage, discovered by German scientist Thomas Seebeck. Temperature can be further calculated from EMF.

Thermocouples come in a range of types with different characteristics such as temperature range, resistance to chemicals or vibration, durability etc. Base metal thermocouples are the most common: types J, K, N, T and E.

Thermocouples are used extensively in science and industry as they are very accurate, can operate over an extremely wide range of temperatures (both hot and cold) and are relatively inexpensive.

See the most frequently used thermocouple material combinations

The Kanthal program includes wire and strip for thermocouples, including compensating cables and extension leads. Kanthal thermocouple wire and thermocouple strip are used at temperatures up to 1260°C (2300°F) and have very accurate and repeatable measurement properties due to our homogeneous manufacturing process.

Kanthal thermocouple wire and strip are widely used in automotive, aerospace, energy, medical and metallurgical industries.