TEC Controller & Peltier Elements
1. How do I connect my Peltier element to the TEC Controllers? (Wiring of the Peltier element)
Usually Peltier elements have a red (positive) and black (negative) cable connected. If you supply the Peltier element with positive current at the red cable, the cold side is the one with the marking of the manufacturer.
2. Is it possible to switch from heating to cooling and vice versa with a TEC Controllers, without changing the mechanical setup?
Yes, since the TEC Controllers have bipolar outputs they can switch between heating and cooling by changing the direction of the output current.
3. What does the hardware configuration NTC56K mean? I would like to use an NTC10K thermistor.
The configuration NTC56K means that the measurable resistance value of a 10K@25 °C NTC thermistor may be max. 56 kOhm, what is defined by the onboard reference resistor. This allows temperature measurements down to -10 °C. Please refer to the corresponding datasheet of the TEC Controller to learn more about the possible temperature ranges.
4. I ordered a TEC-1089-SV-PT100. Can I use NTC sensors?
The hardware configuration designator PT100 means that the controller's input circuitry is configured for Pt100 sensors. NTC sensors cannot be used with that configuration. If you would like to change the configuration, please contact us to return the TEC Controller.
5. TEC Measurement Input Sensitivity
The measurement input of the TEC Controller is very sensitive to external voltage, also to ground connections. Please make sure that the measurement connections are connected to a potential free thermistor and that they have no contact to an external voltage.
6. Does the TEC Controller have a built-in power supply?
No, an external power supply is needed to operate the TEC Controller. Please refer to the compendium for more information.
7. What is the maximum operating temperature of the TEC Controllers?
The components on the TEC Controller have a maximum allowed operation temperature of 85 °C. "Device Temperature" is measured between the power components and the base plate. The derating in the datasheet refers to this temperature and has a reserve of 10 °C.
"System Base Plate" refers to the heat sink or metal plate, where the TEC Controller is mounted on. As a rule of thumb, if the system base plate does not exceed 30 °C and if the controller is thermally and mechanically well fixed, then the "Device Temperature" reaches a temperature of 60 °C max.
Therefore, the TEC Controller can be operated at an ambient temperature of up to 85 °C and a cold system base plate (non-condensing).
8. Where are the temperature sensors connected to the TEC Controller?
9. Is it possible to drive defined current shapes (temperature profiles) using scripting?
The TEC Controllers support scripting over the communication protocol. Every parameter can be set to a specific value using the commands SET_FLOAT and SET_INT. Please refer to the document TEC-Family MeCom Communication Protocol (PDF) to see all parameters. Another possibility is to define a lookup table which is then interpreted by the TEC Controller. Please refer to the user manual chapter 4.
10. Is it possible to drive multistage Peltier elements with the TEC Controllers?
Yes, this is possible with the TEC Controllers Software v3.xx without any adjustments.
11. Do you sell temperature sensors? Are there any sensors provided along with your TEC Controllers?
No, we do not sell temperature sensors nor are they included with our TEC Controllers. Please refer to our temperature sensors suggestions.
12. Do your TEC Controllers work with a PWM signal at the output? What about EMI?
Other TEC Controllers use the power input directly to generate a PWM signal for the Peltier element, which produces interferences and is not efficient. We generate direct current (DC) using switched-mode power supply (SMPS) instead, for ripple free output current and higher efficiency. More information on this topic.
13. What is the maximum power I should operate a Peltier element at?
When outlining the system, the current for the Peltier element should be between 0.3 and 0.7 times Imax. (Imax is given by the datasheet of the Peltier element.) More information about choosing the right Peltier element.
14. Is it possible to operate multiple Peltier elements in parallel or in series per channel?
Yes, this is possible. More information on this topic.
15. Is it possible to use two different temperature sensor configurations for a two-channel TEC Controller?
No, for both channels the same sensor configuration is used, which is defined in the hardware configuration upon ordering.
16. Is it possible to use your TEC Controllers and laser diode drivers with LabVIEW?
Yes, it is possible for TEC Controllers. You can download the LabVIEW VI TEC LabVIEW Control Software (ZIP). However, we don't have a VI for LDDs.
17. Is it possible to use your TEC Controllers and LDDs with Python?
Yes, it is possible. You can use a Python interface for the MeCom communication protocol to control and monitor our TEC Controllers or LDDs. This package allows the remote control of multiple TEC Controllers or LDDs, for example by using a Raspberry Pi. More information and download on GitHub.
18. Is it possible to control TEC Controllers and LDD via terminal commands?
Yes, the controllers and drivers can be used with e.g. HyperTerminal. Please refer to the Communication Protocol download section.
19. Do I need the service software to control the TEC Controller or LDDs?
Direct USB operation and MeCom communication require no service software to be running. The TEC Controller resp. LDD will appear as a virtual COM port (USB Serial Port) on the PC. There is also the possibility to implement the communication using the RS485 protocol. More information about communication protocols.
20. Do you have 3D models / STEP files?
Yes, STEP files can be found in the download section.