How thermocouple works with Video

Working Principle

The working principle of thermocouple is based on three effects, discovered by Seebeck, Peltier and Thomson. They are as follows:
1) Seebeck effect: The Seebeck effect states that when two different or unlike metals are joined together at two junctions, an electromotive force (emf) is generated at the two junctions. The amount of emf generated is different for different combinations of the metals.
2) Peltier effect: As per the Peltier effect, when two dissimilar metals are joined together to form two junctions, emf is generated within the circuit due to the different temperatures of the two junctions of the circuit.
3) Thomson effect: As per the Thomson effect, when two unlike metals are joined together forming two junctions, the potential exists within the circuit due to temperature gradient along the entire length of the conductors within the circuit.

In most of the cases the emf suggested by the Thomson effect is very small and it can be neglected by making proper selection of the metals. The Peltier effect plays a prominent role in the working principle of the thermocouple.

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