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Sensors and Signals

Datalog use, essentially, two types of sensor:

1. Analog sensors that provide a 4 to 20mA, current loop, output.
4mA represents zero output from the sensor, whereas 20mA signifies a full scale
output. If the reading
from a properly calibrated sensor should exceed 20mA, it is likely that there is a
short in the circuit.
Should a sensor fail, but the electrical loop still be intact, a reading of 4mA will be
registered. However,
once the loop has been broken, by a poor connection or cut wire, for example, then
the reading will drop
to 0mA.
A current loop arrangement is used for a number of reasons:
It has a high tolerance, or immunity, to electrical noise.
It provides easy 2 wire circuits, a power side and a signal return side.
It has good immunity to ground loops and ground induced noise.
Sensors operate from a 24V power supply that is situated in the DAU (data
acquisition unit). The hook
up of the sensors is very straightforward with standard cables used and wiring
instructions detailed with
the sensors.
The standard two wire sensors include a red wire, that carries the power (+24v,
signified by + symbol),
and a white, signal return wire (signified by a - symbol).
Standard 2 wire, 4 20mA current loop sensors include the following:
DeLaval float sensor for pit level (non-intrinsic)
Ultrasonic pit level indicator
Mud density
Mud temperature (non-intrinsic)
Mud pH
Mud conductivity
Pressure transducers including standpipe pressure, shut in annular pressure,
torque and load cell hookload.
Mud flow paddle (non-intrinsic)
Ambient H2S sensors
Other sensors require 3 wires, where a black ground wire needs to be connected.
These include:
DeLaval float sensor for pit level (intrinsic)
Mud temperature (intrinsic) resistance signal converted to 4-20mA
Electric torque clamp voltage signal converted to 4-20mA
Mud flow paddle (intrinsic) voltage signal converted to 4-20mA
Ambient combustible gas sensors
Digital sensors that provide a voltage output (4-20mA in the case of a non intrinsic
system) and
register either an on or off state.

A proximity type digital sensor goes to a high signal state when activated by its
proximity to a metallic
Such digital, or proximity, sensors provide INTERRUPT signals for the following:
Rotary table speed (RPM) - 2 wire, red and white
Pump stroke speed (SPM) - 2 wire, red and white
Depth wheel - 3 wire, including a black ground
Crown Depth - 4 wire, since it uses two proximity sensors
Typically, digital sensors also require a shield wire to be connected. This is a bare
wire that helps prevent
stray electrical signals causing a digital pulse to be recorded by the sensor. It should
be noted that it does
no harm to connect the shield wire on any sensor that has the necessary terminals.
The QLOG system also distinguishes a number of BINARY digital parameters:
On-Off Bottom
Direction of block movement, up or down
Gas sample pump alarm condition