A flow meter is a device which is used to measure the flow rate of a gas or a liquid. You must choose the correct type, which will vary depending on the application in question. If you use the wrong type of flow meter, your measurements may be inaccurate and negatively impact capital. Generally, there is a common type of flow meter used that will vary between each industry.
Flow meters come under different categories which depend on the kind of fluid that they can be used to measure. A flow meter may measure vapor, liquid, slurry or gas. To choose the correct one, you’ll need to consider the specific properties of the fluid carefully. For those needing to measure across a wide range, Electromagnetic meters can be handy. If you require measurements that are further dependent on mass over volume, you may wish to choose a Coriolis flow meter. Ultrasonic flow meters are excellent for both time resolution and accuracy.
Ultrasonic flow meters
Ultrasonic flow meter technology is often used in the industry of medicine, science or for industrial applications. These devices are designed for measuring flow in pipes, tubes, or even in blood vessels. Ultrasonic flow meters are categorized as volumetric flow meters. Ultrasonic flow meters function with bubbles or particulates inside the flow. Such flow meters are perfect for water-based liquid including wastewater or conductive liquids.
Ultrasonic flow metres work via the frequency shift of an ultrasonic signal. The signal is then reflected by the particulates in motion. A sound wave changes frequency with the movement of the particles inside the flow of liquid. The ultrasonic sound is transferred to a pipe of flowing fluid. Next, the suspended particles reflect the wave with a different frequency. The slightly changed frequency should be proportional to the flow rate of the liquid. When you are choosing the right ultrasonic flow meter, you will want to consider what is the maximum and minimum rate of flow. The liquid must contain 100 PPM of 100 micron suspended particles (or higher).
Electromagnetic flow meters
Electromagnetic flow meters are also a type of volumetric flow meter. Again, they will work with conductive liquid or dirty water. These meters are not viable for distilled water or hydrocarbons. With these types of meters, the induced voltage is proportional to fluid velocity. An electrode circuit moves the voltage to the transmitter. The transmitter functions to transfer the voltage to a measurable flow velocity. When dealing with industrial water or food, these meters are often used. Electromagnetic meters can also be useful for slurries or sewage liquids with suspended particles.
For further advice on choosing the correct flow meter, it’s a good idea to speak to a flow meter manufacturer. Doing so can help to determine your business needs. Fluid properties like temperature, density and viscosity will affect your choice. It’s advisable to have these areas in mind when you are looking to source your flow meters.