I was considering an ultrasonic sensor for gauging a used 300 gallon milk tank that I have. Has anyone any experience with gauging using these sensors? The sensor claims to give you a digital reading of the volume by gallons, tank level in inches, etc. It looks like you have to fill the tank to set up the device initially.
The device is an Automated Sonix UL-1000 and is supposed to be explosion proof.
If you have any general recommendations on how the small distillers are gauging their 100+ gallon storage tanks, I would appreciate any guidance. Floor scales? Calibrated tanks? Winging it?
Thermometers are filled with "spirit" alcohol because the stuff changes volume as a function of temperature very predictably, and with considerable volume change per degree - much more than water. So, gauging alcohol using a volume metric is (a) impossible without knowing the temperature, ( a pain in the ass (or donkey) when using irregularly shaped tanks (because an additional conversion from height to integrated volume is required).
Your best bet is to invest in a load-cell weighment system. They're easy to calibrate, and are so pervasive in industry that many companies are available to do the work. They come around with a big pile of 50 LB weights and stack them up in/on the tank.
Some of the really cool "counting-scales" can calculate gallons from weight by entering a product code, but we use the TTB tables.