How to Calibrate a Flow Meter

How to Calibrate a Flow Meter | Flowmetrics

Flow meters are used in many industries to measure and control the movement of gases or liquids. Accuracy is crucial in order to ensure that the manufacturing process is going smoothly. Precise measurements are key to many kinds of manufacturing, processing and transfer processes. For this reason, manufacturers look for the highest quality flow meters available on the market.

Why Regular Calibration Is a Must

However, even the most durable and sensitive meter can become imprecise and lose accuracy after prolonged use. Some common causes are regular wear and tear, exposure to moisture or corrosion due to chemicals. Flow meter function can also become disrupted due to accumulation of dirt, impact or faults in the installation process. Regular inspection and calibration of your flow meter is necessary in order to ensure consistently precise readings. To ensure that your calibration of your flow meter achieves the results you want, it is smart to follow the following best practices.

Use Accurate Testing Equipment

First of all, make sure that your testing equipment is up to standard. This means that before you can start using your standard to test your flow meter’s measurements, you must take care to test your standard against another recognized standard and document the results. This will help you maintain a high degree of accuracy when checking the precision of your flow meter’s measurements.

Test Your Testing Equipment

In addition to comparing your standard’s accuracy to that of an already known standard, make sure that its measurements are sufficiently accurate. When you are using a standard to calibrate your flow meter, your standard typically needs to be four times as accurate as the meter you are testing. In some cases, the accuracy requirement can be different based on the specific type of calibration.

Ensure Typical Environment

Now that you have checked your testing equipment, you need to make sure that the testing environment is conducive to precise results. If you want to know how your flow meter is operating on a daily basis, you should test it under conditions that are as similar as possible to its typical environment. The type of substance whose movement is measured by the meter can affect operation, so be sure to test using the same substance. Factors such as heat, density and rate of movement can also affect operation; thus, for optimal testing accuracy, these should also be similar to the regular operating environment.

Consistent Flow

When testing, it is important to keep the flow rate steady. In a typical testing scenario, you will be making a real-time comparison between the flow rate of your meter and your testing standard. Thus, variations in system flow can lead to imprecise results and suboptimal calibration.

Eliminate Variations in Heat and Volume

For best calibrating results, your testing unit will need to measure everything your flow meter regularly measures, simultaneously. This means that it is important that there not be any variations in temperature or volume during the testing process. Before beginning the calibration, check the system for leaks or other irregularities that could compromise test results.

If you find that you are unable to calibrate your flow meter successfully, it may be time for a repair or an upgrade. Flow meters can lose function when they are being used in applications where a particular type or model is not optimal. Improper installation can also lead to damage that may not be easily fixed by recalibrating.  Consult your manufacturer as to the best type of flow meter for your purposes.


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What to Know About Your Flow Computer

What to Know About Your Flow Computer | Flowmetrics

Flow meters today are designed to function with flow computers. An efficient and sophisticated piece of equipment, the flow computer is able to receive and interpret signals from digital and analog instruments such as flow meters, temperature and pressure gauges, flow control valves, samples and liquid provers. The computer makes a complete record of all data received, along with any changes to parameters.

Diverse Uses

In order to fulfill its intended function, a flow computer must be highly precise and able to monitor and record measurements in extremely small increments. Another universally necessary characteristic is durability. These devices are in use across a variety of industries, where they are frequently employed in an environment with varying temperatures and may come into contact with damaging gases or liquids. In order to ensure that measurements and records remain reliable and accurate, it is important to ascertain that your flow computer’s casing and components are designed to perform in the environment you need.

Flow computer are used in many diverse industries today in order to obtain precise measurements and analyses of products. These devices are sometimes referred to as cash registers, due to being widely used to monitor custody and transfer of substances such as natural gas and oil. Computers are also used to monitor and record steam, liquids and gases by food and drink manufacturers, water companies, plants that mine and process metals and minerals, chemical factories, pulp and paper companies and power stations.

Precise Function

Flow computers are used to monitor the flow of gases and liquids in many types of industries, from petrochemicals to food manufacture. In order to obtain optimal results, it is best to choose a computer that is most suited for your purposes. Today, there are many types of computers available with a wide range of attributes and options. It is important to select the one that performs the full range of measurements you need without being cluttered with unnecessary functions. For example, some flow computers also perform chemical analyses and gas density calculations. Other functions may include:

  • Environmental compliance monitoring;
  • Remote metering capacity;
  • Heat flow equations.


Most flow computers need some additional configuration and calibration in order to perform most accurately. Look for models that are easy and intuitive to set up; an overly complicated system is more likely to cause setup errors and ultimately cause inaccurate reporting from your computer.

Maintenance and Inspection

To remain at the peak of their function, computers should be inspected regularly. Scheduled inspection and maintenance is a good way to assure that you are getting the precise measurements you need, along with a comprehensive record. If your flow computer was installed many years ago, some of its components may be obsolete and no longer available on the market; support from the manufacturer may be very limited or entirely non-existent. With new advances in digital technology being made continually, computer manufacturers are able to offer ever-increasing precision in measurement. Updated proprietary metal alloys are also available for durable and secure casing.

The flow computer is an essential part of many types of industries. Manufacturers rely on it for accurate measurement and analysis of work product. Keep your in good order with regular inspections and updates when necessary.

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Innovative Technologies in Chemical Processing

Chemical Processing | Flowmetrics

When it comes to chemical processing, achieving immaculate measurements is an essential part of business. Anything less than an exact count can lead to serious consequences. At best, you might offset your inventory, and at worst, you might anger a client who is buying your product. Although accurate measurement is an important part of chemical processing, it can be difficult to find the tools necessary to accurately and efficiently gauge chemical contents. One solution that many chemical companies have employed is the use of flow meters to gauge the flow and distribution of chemical solutions.

Calibration Service Can Save You Time

In addition to flow meter technology, some providers use individual calibration services in their business. Chemical processing involves far more than just measuring quantities, though. It also entails many other processes, such as:

  • Calibration: All tools used to measure and treat chemicals must be thoroughly monitored and calibrated for accuracy. This process can often be automated or simplified by some models of flow meters.
  • Collection: Condensate residue is a byproduct of processing certain chemicals, and it should typically be collected and measured. This step, too, can be completed by flow meters with the necessary tools integrated.
  • Processing: Many chemicals, such as crude oil, require processing before being sold or used. Processing entails removing impurities and measuring the ingredients of the chemical.

Each of these services is an essential aspect of chemical processing.

Improving Processes for Both Buyers and Sellers

The above processes are all important parts of chemical processing, but perhaps the most essential services a flow meter can provide is its ability to reduce manual effort, maximize efficiency and improve the quality of the chemicals produced. How can a single tool accomplish all this? Most flow meters integrate many tools into their interface, which is one way it can maximize efficiency. It reduces manual labor by eliminating extra work a processor may have to do, and chemicals blended or refined in it are reliable in their consistent quality. Each of these benefits aids both buyers and sellers in maximizing value.

Achieve Reliable Readings in Nearly Any Context

One of the purposes a flow meter can serve in chemical processing is used less often, perhaps, but it is no less useful. A flow meter can help you gain a reading on the flow of chemicals not currently being processed, such as chemicals housed in a separate plant or pipeline. Sometimes measuring production levels and contents in these is important for processing, and certain kinds of flow meters can offer the resources you need to collect data. These measurements can help processors better understand how chemicals work before and after processing, so that processes can be improved when necessary.

A Variety of Options That Work

One of the best things about flow meters is that fact that they may include a variety of features and functions. They are certainly one of the best choices for processing chemicals and completing every other aspect of this process that might be required. A flow meter can help you simplify your processing and improve your efficiency.



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Flow Metering in Street Locations

Flow Metering in Street Locations | Flowmetrics

In the situation of flow control under streets there are two common practices, and one new method to maintain standard regulations; on-site metering, off-site metering, and near-site metering.

On-site metering locates the flow meter in the same manhole as the pipe(s) to be measured. If the manhole installation is classified as a confined space, calibration and maintenance may pose a problem. In this situation multiple operators, a hoist, and gas detection equipment may be mandatory and pose increased costs for maintenance. Some of the difficulties may be avoided by installing remote reading equipment, but to calibrate the flow meter the operator must enter the manhole.

To avoid traffic congestion due to maintenance off-site metering utilizes a manhole placed outside of traffic flow for reading, measuring, and calibrating the flow meter. Concerns with the off-site metering methodology is lag-time between visual observation of the flow rate and calibration of the flow meter. As distance between the measurement location and the remote calibration location increases the possibility and degree of error increases as well.

A compromise of both methodologies above is the near-site metering practice. In this situation a short manhole is located directly next to the metering manhole, yet outside of traffic. In this shorter manhole the flow meter and remote  reading equipment is placed, preferably on a telescoping stand. By sealing both manholes from each other, even if the operator must enter the new manhole it is not calssified as a confined space therefore avoiding additional operators and equipment. 


Click here for the full article by Open Channel Flow.

Effects of Air Pockets in Pump Piping System

piping system It is essential to have air- release valves when designing a system piping. As air pockets accumulate in a system, the air -release valves will vent the pockets. According to an article by Hydraulic Institute, “If the pipeline is fairly flat and the inside surface of the pipe is very rough, or if the pipeline slopes downward, the fluid velocity may not be sufficient to keep the bubbles moving”. This can cause pockets of air to form at the high points and will begin to effect the liquid flow areas.

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