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Flow Gauges

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A flow gauge is a device used to measure the mass of a liquid or gas. The terminology used to refer to them depends on the industry, with names such as flow meters, flow rate sensors, liquid meters, and indicators. Flow gauges can measure the flow in a pipe or open channel and offer accurate flow and volumetric measurements. As a gas or liquid flows through a flow gauge, the media’s flow, volume, speed, and mass are measured. Read More…

Flow Gauges Flow gauges are devices used to measure the rate at which a liquid or gas is flowing through a system. They then relay this information to the operator who can make adjustments based on the readings or choose to continue to monitor the situation.
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Leading Manufacturers

Monterey, CA  |  831-373-0200

Sierra manufacturers high performance mass flow meters and controllers for nearly any gas, liquid or steam. Customers choose Sierra when they need an accurate and repeatable flow measurement, short delivery lead times, expert flow advice and long term support. When it matters, choose Sierra. Visit www.sierrainstruments.com.

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Sierra Instruments $$$

Sturtevant, WI  |  262-886-2695

SIKA is a developer and manufacturer of flow control products and a wide variety of other measuring and monitoring systems. Our inventory includes flow sensors, flow meters, flow switches, and many more. We know that flow solutions aren't one-size-fits-all, which is why we provide consultation and flow management solutions that are individualized and customized to your requirements. When you choose SIKA, you will receive efficient, durable products and customer service tailored to your needs.

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Kent, WA  |  800-975-8153

SeaMetrics, a flow meter manufacturer, produces turbine flow meters, paddle wheel flowmeters, insertion flow meters, low-flow meters, water flowmeters, pulse flowmeters, flow sensors and electronic controls.

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SeaMetrics, Inc. $$$

Huntersville, NC  |  800-325-1405

The flow meters that we are able to provide will withstand the tests of time in order to provide a long lasting value! We have locations in thirty five countries worldwide and we are dedicated to being wherever you need us to be! We have the knowledge and the capability to work with you closely in order to come up with the perfect product to suit your needs! Visit our website today to learn more about what we may do for you!

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Burkert Fluid Control Systems $$$

Wadsworth, OH  |  888-429-5538

Hawk Measurement (HAWK) is a manufacturer and supplier of several types of flow meter technologies such as variable area, magnetic, mass, positive displacement, ultrasonic, and open channel. Connect your flow meter to our CONNEX 3D™ wireless monitor to remotely monitor your application on a web portal, from anywhere in the world. Contact HAWK today for a complete, reliable, and cost-effective solution: (888) 429-5538 // www.hawkmeasure.com

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FLO-Corp $$$
placeholder image Sierra Instruments SIKA USA SeaMetrics, Inc. Burkert Fluid Control Systems FLO-Corp

A flow gauge is a device used to measure the mass of a liquid or gas. The terminology used to refer to them depends on the industry, with names such as flow meters, flow rate sensors, liquid meters, and indicators. Flow gauges can measure the flow in a pipe or open channel and offer accurate flow and volumetric measurements. As a gas or liquid flows through a flow gauge, the media's flow, volume, speed, and mass are measured.

Flow Averaging Tube Sensor Assembly

Flow Gauge Classification

Flow gauges are designed to measure the flow of various liquids and gasses. The three groups of flow gauges are optical, mechanical, and open channel. Mechanical flow gauges are contact flow gauges that have a mechanical element in contact with the gas or liquid, while optical flow gauges are non-contact flow gauges and use light to measure flow velocity.

Mechanical Flow Gauge

A mechanical flow gauge has a moving part placed in the flow. There are four basic mechanical flow gauges: positive displacement, mass, differential pressure, and velocity. They are divided by their method to measure the flow rate and accuracy.

  • Positive Displacement Flow Gauges

    Positive displacement flow gauges have chambers through which a fluid flows. Inside the chambers are components that separate the media into metered volumes. The liquid flow rotates, shifts, or displaces all the components. Positive displacement flow gauges provide highly accurate flow readings without needing a power supply.

  • Mass Flow Gauges

    Mass flow gauges measure the volume of a media as it passes through them. They measure the mass of a media in mass per unit of time. The two types of mass flow gauges are Coriolis and thermal.

    • Coriolis Flow Gauges

      Coriolis flow gauges are inertial flow gauges. As the media passes through a set of tubes, the tubes experience vibratory force, which causes oscillations in parts of the tube. The oscillations' amplitude, frequency, and phase shift are used to calculate mass flow.

      Coriolis Meter with Excitor at the Bottom
    • Thermal Mass Flow Gauges

      A thermal mass flow gauge uses heat transfer to measure mass flow rates. They have a heating element and temperature sensors. As the media passes by the heating element, it gains thermal energy, increasing the fluid's temperature. The sensors measure the amount of heat dissipation to calculate the flow rate.

  • Differential Pressure Flow Gauges

    Differential pressure flow gauges block the flow of the media to create a disparity in the pressure between the up and downstream flow. The difference in the pressures is used to measure the flow rate. They are a very popular type of flow gauge due to their low price and simple design.

  • Velocity Flow Gauges

    Velocity flow gauges measure flow speed using various mechanical methods such as turbines, paddlewheels, electromagnetics, vortex shedding, and ultrasound. The principle of a velocity flow gauge is based on the concept that fluid velocity is directly proportional to the volumetric flow rate given the constant density of the fluid flow stream.

Optical Flow Gauges

Optical flow meters measure the flow rate using a laser beam and photodetectors. As the media passes through a pipe, it scatters the laser beams and produces pulses detected by a receiver. The time between the signals is determined by the distance between the photodetectors, which measures the speed of the media. Optical flow gauges are unaffected by thermal conditions or variations in flow, making them effective in hostile environments.

Optical Flow Gauge

Open Channel Flow Gauges

The measure of open channel flow is challenging since there is a single surface upon which the flow occurs. Unlike a pipe, where the walls restrict the flow, open channel flow is free-flowing, constrained only by gravity. The shape of the flow is determined by the shape and configuration of the channel.

Open channel flow gauges measure the relationship between the depth of the fluid and the flow rate. They use ultrasonic transducers, pressure sensors, shaft encoders, radar, and other methods to measure flow rate. Open channel flow gauges are used to measure flow through weirs, flumes, and channels and are non-contact flow gauges that measure the flow level to calculate the flow rate and volume.

Open Channel Flow Meter

Uses for Flow Gauges

Flow gauges are important tools that accurately measure fluid and gas flow to ensure the efficient performance of an application. The data they provide helps monitor a system and prevent problem areas from becoming uncontrollable. As a result, they have an endless number of industrial uses.

Petroleum Production

The petroleum industry makes the greatest use of flow gauges since it is based on the efficient use of liquids and gasses. Flow gauges are used at every stage of the production process to record fluid flow and quantities.

Chemical Industry

In the chemical industry, flow gauges have the multiple tasks of conducting accurate flow measurements and controlling production to prevent catastrophic conditions. The accuracy of flow meters ensures proper measurements of chemicals for a mixture to guarantee quality.

Gas Stations

Flow gauges measure the gas received by the station and the gas provided to customers. They must be accurate due to the cost involved with gas sales and distribution.

These three industries are a small sampling of the many industries that depend on the reliability and accuracy of flow gauges.

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