Process Sensors (Europe) Limited
Process Sensors

 Applications - Tobacco


Why Measure?
As the processing of tobacco involves multiple mechanical stages; threshing, rolling and cutting, the leaf and stem need to be conditioned to the optimal moisture content prior to each operation, and also before storage. This will prevent blockages, maximise productivity, reduce fines and prevent spoilage.
The use of an on-line MCT 360-T NIR moisture analyser Pre- and Post- Conditioner will provide continuous, up to the second data which the Operator will be able to use to correct moisture levels. The more traditional approach of grabbing samples from the line for laboratory testing is not only labour intensive and time consuming, but can also be non-representative if the moisture isn’t well equilibrated as is the case at the exit of the Conditioner. Averaged on-line data will provide better indication of the true moisture content of tobacco.


GLT Plants     
  Primary Processing Facilities   


  Moisture, Nicotine and Sugar Measurement Off-line

The MCT 360-T is configured specifically to measure moisture in whole or cut tobacco as it is processed;

The sensor enclosure is robust, has an air purge window and contains an in-built cooling panel.
Tobacco moisture measurement filters and algorithm are optimised for the variable composition and presentation of the product to simplify the moisture calibration effort and ensure rapid implementation of the moisture sensors.
The MCT 360-T is complimented by the MCT 660 laboratory sensor. If used in conjunction, the MCT 660 can quickly validate the on-line MCT 360-T, saving time and money over the traditional gravimetric measurement techniques.

Tobacco temperature measurement can be simply integrated into a moisture sensor, likewise an alarm board, enabling an audible or visible alarm when moisture levels exceed alarm limits and product loss sensors which hold the signal or force it to zero if there is a break in product.  A vortex cooler is available which can be simply connected to the integral cooling panel.

Video: Measurement of moisture in tobacco

Gauge outputs, Operator Interface & Display
All outputs are direct from the moisture sensor head in the MCT 360-T. Network options; Ethernet, profibus and devicenet are available in addition to the standard 4-20mA, 0-10V, RS232 or RS485 outputs. An OI is available for display and programming purposes, but isn’t essential. Mct Viewer s/w can be used as an alternative means to program the gauge.

The measurement

Owing to the diverse nature of tobacco in terms of its physical and checmical composition, any single calibration derived from a large number and variety of samples is a compromise when it comes to moisture measurement at a specific line location within a single Production facility, thus it is good practice to fine tune the master calibration by adjusting the zero when the moisture content is close to target. Tobacco and moisture measurement accuracy will differ according to moisture content, cut and homogeneity. It will typically lie between 0.1 – 0.5%.

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