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Optical Particle Counter


:: Section 4

Guidelines to Use the Simulator Program

The OPC Simulator Program consists of two major displays: Setup Screen and the Size Distribution Display screen. On starting the simulator, the user will first enter the Setup Screen. This is the analog of the front panel of the instrument. The following parameters should be selected:

Setup Screen

  1. Sample Flow Rate (this is the flow rate of the aerosol). Enter in window labeled "FLOW RATE"
  2. Sampling Time (the time for which the particles will be counted. Note that if concentrations are high, it is advisable to use a shorter sampling time to prevent saturation of the accumulators that keep track of particle counts). The numbers are entered in the window labeled "TIME INTERVAL"
  3. The window labeled "PARTICLE COUNT" represents the maximum counts of particles that can be displayed. This affects the sensitivity and is based on the capacity of the electronic registers.
  4. The window labeled SIZE INTERVAL should be appropriately selected based on the size range of interest. OPC can readily measure particles above a certain size range, and the user should select this based on the application area.
  5. The user should also indicate what system is being measured. If the program is used in an integrated fashion with the CYCLONE program, the size distributions could be measured at the inlet, midsection and outlet of the cyclone. If the program is being used as a standalone, there are some typical size distributions that can be selected - such as the size distribution of the ambient aerosol in St. Louis, or that at the exhaust of a coal combustion system, etc.
  6. SELECTED CHANNEL is one channel whose count is displayed during the measurement process.

Display Screen

This is self explanatory and displays the particle counts after all the set up parameters are selected. After the sampling is completed the size distribution can also be printed out, or viewed in tabular form.