The automated Cleveland Open Cup flash point tester accurately determines flash point and fire point of viscous petroleum products over an extended temperature range. When testing highly viscous materials specimens, the sample is preheated at a specified temperature and time in order to liquefy the sample for testing. The surface skin from bituminous samples can be removed with a skimmer. The flash/fire point tests are simply conducted by mounting the flash cup filled with sample into the test position and selecting a pre-programmed test method or the search mode to determine an approximate flash point. The test results are automatically corrected to standard pressure (101.3 kPa). Equipped with a differential Pt-100 RTD probe, the system is designed to duplicate the response time of a mercury-in-glass thermometer. Multiple sensors continually monitor instrument function, displaying an error message if a problem is detected. The performance of the ionization sensor which detects the flash and fire points is continuously monitored, and the user is notified upon the need of replacement. If a flash is not detected 20°C above the expected flash point or at 420°C, then the test is automatically aborted for safety. The system is easily interfaced with an external PC for operation and method updates. When performing a test, the system will display the stirring speed, temperature curve (also printed out), and current test status. The system alerts the user if the first application of the igniter results in a flash or if no flash point is detected at the end of the test program. If a flash is not detected 30°C above the expected flash point or at 400°C, then the test is automatically aborted for safety.
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