Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.

Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock ( ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Analysis of Thermocouple Behavior in Compartment Fires



Sung C. Kim, Anthony P. Hamins, Matthew F. Bundy, Gwon Ko, Erik L. Johnsson


The present study uses numerical simulations and analytical solutions to investigate the heat transfer processes associated with bare bead and double shield aspirated thermocouples. The uncertainty of thermocouple temperature measurements is emphasized. The study is divided into several parts. Three dimensional CFD calculations for the double shielded aspirated thermocouple geometry are performed to understand the flow characteristics. Based on the iso-thermal flow calculations, conjugate heat transfer calculations for a simplified geometry are performed to investigate the thermocouple measurement error associated with a fire environment. The results of the 3D heat transfer calculations are compared with algebraic solutions from a previously developed simple energy balance model. The algebraic model shows acceptable results compared to the 3D CFD model, despite several assumptions and idealizations. A parametric study was conducted to quantify the thermocouple error for various gas temperature and surrounding conditions.
Proceedings Title
Asia-Oceania Symposium | 7th | 2007 |
Conference Dates
September 20-22, 2007
Conference Location
Hong Kong, CH
Conference Title
Asia-Pacific Conference


compartment fire, fire experiments, model validaion, structural fire


Kim, S. , Hamins, A. , Bundy, M. , Ko, G. and Johnsson, E. (2007), Analysis of Thermocouple Behavior in Compartment Fires, Asia-Oceania Symposium | 7th | 2007 |, Hong Kong, CH (Accessed February 29, 2024)
Created September 27, 2007, Updated February 19, 2017