Steam is the medium of choice for many heating and cleaning processes in manufacturing industries. It can be distributed easily; it is clean and provides a great amount of heating capacity.
This intense usage also makes it a valuable resource, since it takes a lot of primary energy, mostly natural gas, produce it. It is easy to see why steam system operators like to know about their steam production and consumption.
Whether it be for general monitoring, internal balancing, energy management or carbon footprint tracking, steam flow measurement is needed.
Conventional steam measurement
In the past, measuring steam has been a job for inline meter technologies like differential pressure methods or vortex meters. A differential pressure probe, orifice plate or a kind of bluff body needed to be installed into the steam stream itself, generating a measuring effect and thus being able to determine the steam flow.
This brings several downsides: The installation itself is a cost factor to which you must add the consequent downtime of the steam supply. Mostly, steam installations and maintenance must be done during annual shutdowns, and necessarily when the measurement is needed. Also, any type of inline meter suffers from wear to its primary element, which generates a drifting value over time. Frequent calibration is required to maintain meter accuracy.
And, most notably, inline meters produce a pressure loss. This is especially true for vortex meters, which generally have a built-in pipe diameter reduction, to be able to measure over the lower flow range of a steam system. At times, even this is not enough requiring additional reductions in the steam pipe diameter.
FLUXUS ST- The easy way to measure steam
FLEXIM´s ultrasonic, transit time measuring principle is suitable for liquids, gases, and steam. With up to 1000 measuring cycles per second, and the ability to detect flow velocities low as 0.03 ft/s, this technology is a great solution for saturated steam applications.
The transit time principle provides fast-responding and accurate flow measurement, without the need to install any measuring element into the pipe.
Since the system is clamp-on it can be installed during normal operation right onto the hot pipe with no shutdown or cooldown required.
This also means that operators do not need to wait for the next planned shutdown to install or maintain their steam flow meter, resulting in much greater planning flexibility.
No pipe diameter reduction
Any obstacle in a pipe means pressure loss and thus also energy loss. With pipe diameter reduction, which comes along with nearly all vortex meter installations, this pressure and energy loss increases dramatically.
The ultrasonic transit time measurement overcomes this disadvantage, by being able to measure from 0.03 ft/s and up on any given pipe diameter.
This means real zero pressure and energy loss in addition to less condensation of valuable steam within the pipe.
Portable steam flow measurement
Clamp-on also means flexible and portable measurement. Since no drilling or cutting is required, the measurement can be installed on any measuring point of interest at any time.
The FLUXUS G601 ST is a battery powered, fully equipped steam meter. Using the same measuring principle and the same advantages as the F601, this meter allows temporary, and accurate steam flow measurements. Of course, all other applications such as liquid flow, gas flow and thermal energy measurement are all included with the FLUXUS G601 ST.
Check metering, verification and flexible energy management has never been easier.
- Non-invasive steam measurement
- 100% process availability – no shutdown or cool down needed
- Pipe diameter Range 45mm to 1,000mm
- Saturated steam up to 355°F
- High dynamic measuring range starting at 0.01m/s
- No pipe diameter reduction required
- Zero pressure loss
- No wear and tear – reliable, long term stable measurement