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Lisa S. Jutte, Kenneth L. Knight and Blaine C. Long

Objective:

Examine thermocouple model uncertainty (reliability + validity).

Design:

First, a 3 × 3 repeated measures design with independent variables electrothermometers and thermocouple model. Second, a 1 × 3 repeated measures design with independent variable subprobe.

Intervention:

Three electrothermometers, 3 thermocouple models, a multi-sensor probe and a mercury thermometer measured a stable water bath.

Main Outcome Measures:

Temperature and absolute temperature differences between thermocouples and a mercury thermometer.

Results:

Thermocouple uncertainty was greater than manufactures’ claims. For all thermocouple models, validity and reliability were better in the Iso-Themex than the Datalogger, but there were no practical differences between models within an electrothermometers. Validity of multi-sensor probes and thermocouples within a probe were not different but were greater than manufacturers’ claims. Reliability of multiprobes and thermocouples within a probe were within manufacturers claims.

Conclusion:

Thermocouple models vary in reliability and validity. Scientists should test and report the uncertainty of their equipment rather than depending on manufactures’ claims.

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Katie J. Lyman, Michael McCrone, Thomas A. Hanson, Christopher D. Mellinger and Kara Gange

SS , Dalley EB . The uncertainty (validity and reliability) of three electrothermometers in therapeutic modality research . J Athl Train . 2005 ; 40 ( 3 ): 207 – 210 . PubMed ID: 16284643 16284643 36. Jutte LS , Knight KL , Long BC . Reliability and validity of electrothermometers and