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How an Ultrasonic Flow Meter Works


Dec 05, 2017
John, Chief Engineer
Written By:
John, Chief Engineer

An ultrasonic flow meter utilizes ultrasound to measure the velocity of a fluid and is used in a variety of fluid applications. Ultrasonic flowmeters are ideal for water and other liquids. Clamp-on ultrasonic flow meters achieve high accuracy at low and high flows, save time with no pipe cutting or process shutdown, and are not affected […]

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How Does a Water Flow Meter Work?


Oct 27, 2017
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director
Written By:
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director

A water flow meter is a device that measures the amount of water flowing through a pipe. There are several water flow meter technologies to choose from depending on the water measurement application, maintenance requirements, and budgetary terms.  Each of these types of water flow meters has a unique principle of operation, specific application benefits, and overall cost-of-ownership. The question […]

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How Does a Flow Meter Work?


Oct 09, 2017
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director
Written By:
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director

A flow meter works by measuring the amount of a gas, liquid or steam that passes through or around the flow meter sensors. While flow meter sensors work in many different ways, the end goal is the same: Deliver the most accurate and repeatable flow measurements for the specific application, whether for general research, process […]

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Preventable Mistakes with Vortex Flow Meters


Sep 22, 2017
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director
Written By:
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director

Vortex flow meter technology is an ideal technology for many applications particularly saturated and supersaturated steam, volumetric water applications as well as flow energy management (natural gas, compressed air, steam, water) in facilities and large campuses. In some of these applications, vortex installations can be tricky and take flow expertise for the most successful installations. Kam Bansal, […]

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How Does a Thermal Flow Meter Work?


Aug 31, 2017
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director
Written By:
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director

An insertion-type (immersible) thermal flow meter works by measuring the total mass flow rate of air/gas flowing through a pipe or duct. In a thermal flow meter’s simplest working configuration, gas flows past a heated velocity sensor and a temperature sensor. Instrument electronics work to maintain a constant temperature differential of 50 degrees Celsius between the actual gas temperature and the […]

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Now Measure All Flow Energy In Your Facility — One Solution — Three Metering Technologies


Jul 01, 2017
Matthew Olin, President & CEO
Written By:
Matthew Olin, President & CEO

Facilities managers at large facilities often have the challenging task of managing all the flow energy in their facility with the mandate from upper management to save money on energy costs. To accomplish this goal, it’s critical to get accurate flow measurement data of the flow energy in your facility such as: natural gas, compressed air, steam, chilled […]

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Making Ultrasonic Liquid Flow Meter Installation Easier


Jun 26, 2017
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager
Written By:
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager

Ultrasonic transit-time flow meter technology is becoming one of the most adopted technologies for accurate liquid and energy/BTU measurement. Although a major benefit of the technology is that it is non-invasive and can be clamped to the outside of the pipe, an inherent challenge with ultrasonic clamp on liquid flow meters is finding the best […]

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How to Supercharge the SmartTrak Mass Flow Controller with Compod


Jun 12, 2017
Maryadine Washington, Mar-Com Manager
Written By:
Maryadine Washington, Mar-Com Manager

Streamline, simplify and save time and money by plugging the innovative Compod upgrade into the face of any SmartTrak 100 mass flow meter or controller. SmartTrak is not only a true multi-gas digital mass flow controller, it can control your process too. If you need more functionality to control a positive shutoff valve, have a pulse output, or […]

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Introducing Our New InnovaSonic 207i Ultrasonic Liquid Flow Meter


May 15, 2017
Matthew Olin, President & CEO
Written By:
Matthew Olin, President & CEO

For Liquid Flow Metering, Optimized for Thermal Energy/ BTU Sierra is proud to announce the new InnovaSonic 207i ultrasonic liquid flow meter with thermal energy/BTU capability.  Designed, built and calibrated by Sierra in Monterey, California for non-intrusive liquid flow metering, and optimized for thermal energy/BTU measurement, the 207i transit-time ultrasonic flow meter is the ideal turnkey solution for […]

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Flow Tip Video: Learn Why Ease-of-Use is Critical for Flow Meter Selection


Apr 17, 2017
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager
Written By:
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager

Many times scientists and researchers spend more time setting up equipment and instrumentation for their experiments than conducting actual experiments to gather important data. This holds true for flow meters and controllers to measure and control gases to experiments. Some flow meters are very cumbersome with no display, can only measure one gas, low value for price, and limited application flexibility.  And if you need application […]

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[Minute Flow Tip Video] Mass Flow Versus Volumetric Flow Technology


Mar 28, 2017
Jim Oswald, Technical Support Manager
Written By:
Jim Oswald, Technical Support Manager

When engineers and systems integrators need to measure gas flow rate in an industrial process or scientific research, there are many types of technologies to choose from.  This makes selecting the right gas flow meter a challenge. In addition to technology, engineers must consider many other parameters: price for value, cost of ownership, size of footprint, application flexibility, calibration method, accuracy […]

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Overcoming Natural Gas Sampling Challenges in Oil & Gas Applications


Mar 03, 2017
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager
Written By:
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager

It is a fact that in order to comply with various government rules and regulations, oil and gas companies have to continually take natural gas samples to prove the gas composition and amount of gas flowing in their oil fields. The challenge comes in trying to actually take an adequate gas sample representative of the […]

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Sierra’s Biggest Stories from 2016


Jan 09, 2017
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager
Written By:
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager

2017 is here and this year will bring many new exciting developments at Sierra, but before launching completely into the new year, let’s take a look back at our top stories of 2016. New at Sierra in 2016 We’re always looking for new ways to communicate and interact with our customers and industry. Find out about three […]

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Flare Gas Measurement Innovation: Retain Flow Metering Accuracy Even if Gas Composition Changes


Dec 12, 2016
Matthew Olin, President & CEO
Written By:
Matthew Olin, President & CEO

It’s a fact oil wells almost always produce natural gas along with the petroleum. Nine times out of ten, the excess gas (typically hydrocarbons) is flared off or simply vented as-is during upset conditions in the process. The environmental impacts of “flaring” this excess gas into our atmosphere has resulted in government regulations like 40 CFR […]

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Direct Mass Flow or Volumetric: The Thermal Flow Meter Technology Advantage!


Nov 18, 2016
Maryadine Washington, Mar-Com Manager
Written By:
Maryadine Washington, Mar-Com Manager

In today’s world where everyone is watching the bottom line, you need high performance, cost-effective instrumentation—and capillary thermal mass flow meters and controllers have been proven to meet this criteria in a wide range of process applications. Thermal mass flow technology is an industry standard for mass flow control of gases because it measures flow directly, […]

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The ‘Swiss Army Knife’ of Mass Flow Controllers


Oct 31, 2016
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager
Written By:
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager

Did you ever wish your mass flow controller could do it all? You’re not alone. End users ranging from machine builders to laboratory researchers are often faced with the challenge of needing flow measurement and control equipment for a wide variety of applications. Many customers call the SmartTrak 100 mass flow controller the “Swiss Army knife” of MFC’s.  […]

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Sensor Probe Insertion/Retractor Simplifies Installation of Steam Flow Meters in Hot Tapping Applications


Oct 26, 2016
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director
Written By:
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director

Accurately measuring fluid flows like steam in large ducts or pipes is a challenging application. Large ducts and pipes often have swirl or turbulent flow which makes accurate flow measurement difficult. Not to mention, installation of steam flow meters can be extremely challenging since in many cases you will need to shut off the steam flow to install […]

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The First Vortex Flow Meter with Apps Wins Innovation Award!


Oct 06, 2016
Maryadine Washington, Mar-Com Manager
Written By:
Maryadine Washington, Mar-Com Manager

Thank you to the readers of industry publication, Flow Control Magazine, who voted for Sierra’s InnovaMass 240i/241i iSeries multivariable and volumetric vortex flow meters in Flow Control’s 2016 Innovation Awards. Sierra was awarded an honorable mention. Sierra’s tradition and spirit of innovation spanning over 40 years drives everything we do, we are happy that the readers of Flow Control […]

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Primary Standard Gas Flow Calibration—The Only Guarantee of Accuracy


Sep 19, 2016
Jim Oswald, Technical Support Manager
Written By:
Jim Oswald, Technical Support Manager

At Sierra, we have a saying: “An instrument’s accuracy is only as good as its calibration.” The accuracy of your mass flow controller (MFC) is essential in assuring the efficiency, performance, and quality of your flow meter. In many cases, if your instrumentation is not calibrated, then a decline in performance is possible due to sensor drift from the factory […]

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Gas Mass Flow Control: Why Thermal Mass Flow Technology is Recommended for Best Accuracy


Aug 26, 2016
John, Chief Engineer
Written By:
John, Chief Engineer

It’s no secret. Price, but perhaps more importantly, performance, drive every new product acquisition you make. How important is measurement accuracy and control to your lab experiment or industrial process? It’s critical. If your flow readings are off or the flow is not controlled with precise accuracy your research is compromised, product quality suffers, and […]

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Reducing Costs of Steam Flow Measurement


Aug 19, 2016
Matthew Olin, President & CEO
Written By:
Matthew Olin, President & CEO

Traditionally, steam flow has been measured with a differential pressure device. This is typically an orifice plate. However, such devices are inherently volumetric flow measurements. As we have discussed in previous blog posts, changes in pressure and temperature will change the mass flow rate of steam. Even a “small” change of 10% in steam pressure […]

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How to Achieve Precise Air-Fuel Ratio Control in Burner Control Applications


Aug 12, 2016
Kam Bansal, Dir. of Engineering
Written By:
Kam Bansal, Dir. of Engineering

Mass flow control is all around us. One common application for industrial mass flow control is air-fuel ratio control of burners in industrial heating processes for manufacturing and other industries. For burner control in manufacturing, precise mass flow control of the air-fuel ratio to the burner keeps melt temperatures constant which produces quality products including […]

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Minute Flow Tip! Don’t Settle for “Good Enough”


Jul 15, 2016
John, Chief Engineer
Written By:
John, Chief Engineer

There are so many options for mass flow controllers out there that are “good enough.” Why compromise when making an investment in a mass flow instrument? Discover the Swiss Army Knife of mass flow controllers in this Minute Flow Tip. The capillary thermal technology used in every SmartTrak mass flow controller measures flow directly, at […]

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InnovaMass iSeries Vortex Mass Flow Meter Nominated for Flow Control Innovation Award!


Jul 07, 2016
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager
Written By:
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager

Sierra has a tradition of innovation spanning over 40 years and this spirit of innovation continues to drive our engineers each day!  We are delighted that Flow Control has noticed. Each year, Flow Control, a flow measurement industry magazine, selects fluid handling products they feel are worthy of being called the “Innovation of the Year” and […]

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New Video: Master Your Mass Flow Control Challenges


Jun 22, 2016
Matthew Olin, President & CEO
Written By:
Matthew Olin, President & CEO

For over 40 years, Sierra has pioneered the development of precision gas mass flow controllers. Today, our high-performance SmartTrak lineup, with over 100,000 successful installations, proves we’ve never let up. For Lab Researchers and Systems Integrators/OEMs, SmartTrak is often called the Swiss Army Knife of gas mass flow controllers. Find out why in our new video. The SmartTrak Advantage: A […]

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Tuning Your Boiler for EPA Boiler MACT Compliance


May 12, 2016
Matthew Olin, President & CEO
Written By:
Matthew Olin, President & CEO

The EPA’s Boiler MACT (Maximum Achievable Control Technology) regulations are heating up. Boiler MACT is an EPA rule to limit hazardous air pollutants (HAP) from commercial and industrial boilers and process heaters. Originally published in 2011 as a mandate driven by the Clean Air Act,  the rules are Area Source Boiler MACT 40 CFR 63, subpart JJJJJJ for smaller […]

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Providing Precision Flow Control Solutions for Critical Biomolecular Research


Apr 29, 2016
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director
Written By:
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director

When scientists at the University of Nottingham’s Centre for Biomolecular Sciences (CBS) in the United Kingdom needed instrumentation to control the flow of gases in their research, they turned to Litre Meter, a UK distributor for Sierra Instruments, and the SmartTrak 100 series mass flow meters and controllers. The working relationship between Litre Meter and the […]

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Minute Flow Tip Video: Steam Measurement in Large Pipes—Hot Tapping


Mar 31, 2016
Maryadine Washington, Mar-Com Manager
Written By:
Maryadine Washington, Mar-Com Manager

Learn more about the product featured in this video:  InnovaMass 241i Insertion Vortex Flow Meter Need more information on measuring steam? Learn more about maximizing steam productivity and reducing the overall cost of ownership for additional energy savings when measuring steam. A new “Minute Flow Tip” will be posted to our YouTube channel every month. […]

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Video Series Highlights One-Minute Flow Measurement Tips


Mar 30, 2016
Maryadine Washington, Mar-Com Manager
Written By:
Maryadine Washington, Mar-Com Manager

At Sierra, we get very excited about flow measurement and control as you can imagine, and sometimes we want to spread the information we have quickly without a whole lot of fuss. That’s the spirit behind our video series called “Minute Flow Tips.”  In just a minute or so, we discuss a specific flow application […]

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For Vortex Flow Meters, Accuracy Matters in Steam Energy Flow Measurement


Mar 13, 2016
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director
Written By:
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director

The heat is on. Most facilities managers are in the hot seat to account for all of the flow energy, going in and out of their facility which is no easy task. This mandate is no different for steam flow measurement. Vortex flow meters continue to be the industry standard for accurate steam flow measurement. […]

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How to Reduce Methane Emissions with Thermal Mass Flow Meters


Feb 11, 2016
Glen, Account & Market Manager
Written By:
Glen, Account & Market Manager

The flare gas discussion is heating up again. According to the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), U.S. oil production is at an all-time high, and so are the harmful methane emissions from leaks, flaring and venting. U.S. Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell has proposed to update 30-year-old regulations in order to reduce the excess release of natural […]

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Sierra Website: Wide Selection, 1-Day Lead Times, Flow Meter Configurator


Dec 16, 2015
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager
Written By:
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager

Find it in 2-Clicks When designing our new website, the mantra of our software engineers, designers, and marketing team was “put the customer first” and allow any type of customer to research, specify, or configure any flow meter in just two clicks. Check out www.sierrainstruments.com With over 15 user tests, multiple interviews and a deep dive into our […]

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It Has Apps! Our New Vortex Flow Meter Empowers You


Dec 10, 2015
Matthew Olin, President & CEO
Written By:
Matthew Olin, President & CEO

Sierra’s next generation InnovaMass “iSeries” features a new hyper-fast microprocessor, robust software apps, and an automated state-of-the-art manufacturing and flow calibration facility to assure the highest level of quality and delivery. It Has Apps! The InnovaMass iSeries features flow management apps driven by our new Raptor II OS that will empower your process and save you time and money. ValidCal […]

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Watch Video: Sierra’s NEW Website Simplifies Finding the Right Flow Meter


Nov 20, 2015
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager
Written By:
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager

Let’s face it, finding the right flow meter for your application can often be a daunting task. Which product best suits my application? Which flow meter version will give me the best price vs. value to meet my needs? How can I get my meter quickly? Who can help specify flow meters for my facility? These […]

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The New Vortex iSeries has Arrived!


Oct 28, 2015
Matthew Olin, President & CEO
Written By:
Matthew Olin, President & CEO

InnovaMass. Reinvented. I am proud to announce on behalf of our entire development team, our completely re-designed, next generation InnovaMass 240i and 241i vortex volumetric flow and multivariable mass flow meter product line. Learn more… The all new iSeries InnovaMass 240i inline and 241i insertion vortex flow meters are manufactured at our brand new assembly and calibration facility in […]

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Perfect Beer Foam with Modern Flow Meters


Oct 23, 2015
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager
Written By:
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager

We talk a lot about the use of flow meters in flare gas, waste water and sub-metering applications, but Sierra’s innovative flow meters are utilized by a wide variety of industries. You’ll find our flow measurement and control devices orbiting the earth, assisting with the creation of oceanic atmospheres in research facilities and even improving […]

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4 Ways to Make Flow Calibration Easy for You


Oct 16, 2015
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager
Written By:
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager

Our flow experts here at Sierra are committed to ensuring your flow meter is accurately calibrated and returned quickly so downtime is kept to a minimum. Sierra’s latest flow meter service and calibration brochure, “Precision Delivered”, details that level of commitment, showcasing four key components of our approach to flow calibration service. Assuring your flow […]

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Thermal Mass Flow Meters Offer Oil & Gas Companies Lowest Cost of Ownership


Aug 28, 2015
Maryadine Washington, Mar-Com Manager
Written By:
Maryadine Washington, Mar-Com Manager

The Wall Street Journal recently reported that oil prices have hit a rock bottom $40 a barrel, the lowest since 2009. How does this affect the oil companies? Well, the consumer gets the benefit of the low pump price which does loosen discretionary spending, but the oil & gas companies are hurting-spending less money on capital investment […]

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Vote for Sierra!


Jul 27, 2015
Maryadine Washington, Mar-Com Manager
Written By:
Maryadine Washington, Mar-Com Manager

qMix Gas Mixing Software Nominated for Flow Control’s 2015 Innovation Award! Sierra Instruments’ talented team of engineers has done it again, with yet another innovative solution to save you time and money. Sierra’s qMix gas mixing software has been nominated for Flow Control’s 2015 Innovation Awards. For the first time ever, you can use Sierra’s QuadraTherm […]

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Get Our New Full Line Flow Meter Product Catalog / Selection Guide


Jun 30, 2015
Maryadine Washington, Mar-Com Manager
Written By:
Maryadine Washington, Mar-Com Manager

Find the Right Meter for Your Application—Instantly Let’s face it, specifying the best flow instrumentation for your application can be a daunting task. That’s why we created a new Full Line Flow Product Catalog with all Sierra’s products, key specifications, and application benefits in one, easy-to-use brochure. Quickly specify the right flow meter for your […]

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Everything You Need to Know About Sub-Metering Natural Gas


Jun 29, 2015
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager
Written By:
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager

We’ve written quite a bit about the benefits of using thermal flow meters to sub-meter natural gas in large facilities. So much so, that we’ve decided to create one post that can be your go-to resource for finding information on the topic. Here you’ll find links to easily digestible content like infographics and SlideShare presentations, […]

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ACHEMA Show, Frankfurt, Germany: See qMix Gas Mixing Demo


Jun 15, 2015
Maurtis, Managing Director, Sierra Europe
Written By:
Maurtis, Managing Director, Sierra Europe

As the leading trade show for chemical engineering and the process industry, ACHEMA attracts the top manufacturers from around the world to showcase their innovative products and services. Sierra will once again exhibit at the Frankfurt, Germany, June 15-19. Location: Be sure to visit Sierra booth E2 in Hall 11.0 for a live demonstration of […]

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For the First Time, Field-Adjust For Gas Composition Changes, Retain Accuracy, Save Time and Money


Jun 05, 2015
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director
Written By:
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director

For the first time, customers can adjust their gas composition in the field on thermal flow meters to solve EPA reporting challenges. When gas composition changes, typical thermal meters must be sent back to the factory to be re-calibrated in order to maintain required accuracy levels.  All of this is a costly, time consuming endevour. Imagine the time […]

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Sierra’s Precision Control Valves Offer Customers Proven Solution


Jun 01, 2015
Matthew Olin, President & CEO
Written By:
Matthew Olin, President & CEO

What took us so long! Since the ’80s Sierra has been a leader in designing and manufacturing electromagnetic control valves used in our flagship SmartTrak mass flow controllers and legacy 800 series. The catch is that in the past customers had to buy the mass flow controller to capitalize on our precision control valve. Now, after 30+ years […]

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If gas composition changes, field-adjust to maintain flow meter accuracy?


Apr 13, 2015
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director
Written By:
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director

Changes in gas composition cut into productivity in the field, exactly when you need accuracy in flow meter measurement the most. But what if you could retain that precision, even when those changes occur? Now you can do just that with qMix Software.  If your gas composition changes over time, you can now quickly field-adjust the QuadraTherm […]

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Why Dry Sensor Design Is Key for Stability, Accuracy and In-Situ Validation


Mar 01, 2015
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director
Written By:
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director

Designing a stable sensor that will last over the lifetime of your thermal mass flow meter is the holy grail in thermal mass flow meter design.  The truth is that most flow meter manufacturers use a “wet” sensor design, filled with epoxies and cements.  As conditions in your application change, the sensor is heated and cooled over time, expanding […]

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Precision in Formula 1 Testing


Nov 22, 2014
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager
Written By:
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager

Not many of our flow meter customers know we have been active in the automotive test industry since the early 1990s. Like Sierra’s Flowmeter Division, our Automotive Test Division is passionate about precision measurement and control. There is a lot of flow measurement needed in automotive testing, but Sierra’s capabilities in this area spread well […]

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Take Charge of Your Facility’s Water Usage…


Oct 27, 2014
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director
Written By:
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director

Water is a precious resource! Now, more than ever, businesses and facilities must take charge of their water usage to help with water conservation and lower water bills. Water conservation begins with knowing exactly how much water you are using in your process or facility. When you know how much water you are using, you can adjust […]

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Methods & Pitfalls of In-Situ Calibration Validation of Thermal Flowmeters


Oct 07, 2014
Matthew Olin, President & CEO
Written By:
Matthew Olin, President & CEO

Driven by the need to meet quality standards like ISO 9001, reliability engineers for mid-to-large-sized facilities and campuses know the time consuming reality of assuring their flow meters are properly maintained and “in cal”. A unique and highly marketed benefit of Thermal Mass Flow Meter technology is “in-situ” or “in place” flow meter calibration.  This certainly sounds like […]

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Ultra-High Pressure 5000 psig (345 barg) Gas Mass Flow Control…No Easy Task!


Sep 22, 2014
Max Waterstone, Engineer
Written By:
Max Waterstone, Engineer

Overall, Sierra wants better accuracy and control of high pressure gas mass flows across industry in general, leading to better efficiency, and vastly reducing gas losses to save time and money for our customers.  But, how is it possible to accurately measure and control gas mass flow rates at pressures up to 5000 psig (345 barg)? This is […]

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The Truth About In-Situ Calibration Validation of Thermal Flowmeters


Sep 10, 2014
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director
Written By:
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director

In-situ calibration validation is one of the great benefits of thermal mass flow technology. This video reviews in-situ calibration validation and details how thermal sensor stability is the only way a calibration validation is actually valid! Get the truth about in-situ calibration so you can make informed decisions. Watch the video now! For a more detailed […]

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The Secret to Slashing Your Facility’s Natural Gas Bills


Aug 26, 2014
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager
Written By:
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager

Psst. We’ve got a secret. One that could save you money. How much, you ask? Thousands. That’s right. You could be saving thousands on your facility’s natural gas bill. Traditional diaphragm flow meters used for natural gas measurement can’t account for changes in gas composition, resulting in a utility bill that can be less than […]

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4 Keys to Great Portable Ultrasonic Flow Metering


Aug 18, 2014
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director
Written By:
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director

The liquid measurement market is an extremely large market with many varied measurement requirements. To get the best bang for your buck, a portable ultrasonic flow meter is a practical solution. With a portable ultrasonic flow meter, you can use one liquid flow meter in several locations throughout your flow process. There are many portable […]

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How to Install Vortex Steam Flow Meters!


Jul 27, 2014
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager
Written By:
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager

A few weeks back  Glen Coblentz, Vice President of North American sales, spent three days in New York City. Unfortunately, he was not able to enjoy the sites of NYC. Instead, he was working 45-feet underground in 120 F degree heat in New York City’s steam tunnels.  For over five hours, Glen worked with Sierra Representative, North East Technical, commissioning […]

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Best Practices for Mass Flow Controller Manufacturing


May 29, 2014
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager
Written By:
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager

In Part 1 of our mass flow controller best practices series, Best Practices for Mass Flow Controller Selection and Installation,  Sierra’s Chief Engineer John Smitherman compiled a comprehensive list of best practices for the selection, installation and operation of mass flow meters and controllers. With so many flow measurement products and technologies on the market, […]

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Understanding Flowmeter Recalibration Traceability…


May 19, 2014
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager
Written By:
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager

Customers often ask if they need to have their flow meter instrumentation calibrated annually. Along with calibration-related questions, traceability is another area that garners its fair share of inquiries. In this week’s post, I’ll share the answers to these commons questions you may have been wondering about. Do I need to have my mass flow […]

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How to Save Time & Money by Calibrating Flow Meters Onsite


May 01, 2014
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director
Written By:
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director

If you have hundreds of mass flow controllers and meters or just a few in your lab, facility, or manufacturing process, how do you keep up with the demands of annual recalibration? Most flow meters and controllers need to be recalibrated yearly to meet stringent ISO quality standards. This requires technicians to remove the mass flow meters from the […]

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Best Practices for Mass Flow Controller Selection & Installation


Apr 07, 2014
John, Chief Engineer
Written By:
John, Chief Engineer

As scientists, facilities managers and manufacturing engineers, specifying equipment is a part of our daily work life. What product do I need? What’s the best price for the value? How do I install the product once I get it? The more information about best practice principles, the easier the job is of specifying and buying […]

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NEW Video Animation: How Do Thermal Mass Flowmeters Work?


Mar 24, 2014
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager
Written By:
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager

As if your were actor Dennis Quaid in the popular 1987 movie Innerspace, journey inside the pipe to learn the operational principle of thermal mass flow technology and see, from a molecules perspective, why thermal flow meters have become extremely popular due to high accuracy, no moving parts, negligible pressure drop, sensitive direct mass flow measurement with high […]

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Part 3: Accurately Measuring Flare Gas — Managing Gas Mix Changes, Retaining Accuracy, Reducing Cost of Ownership


Mar 17, 2014
Matthew Olin, President & CEO
Written By:
Matthew Olin, President & CEO

In my last post, I compared the pros and cons of the various flow meters available for measurement of flare gas. Ultimately, all but one has limitations that will impede your ability to accurately measure excess burn off from the hydraulic fracturing process. In this week’s post, I’ll share a new generation thermal mass flow […]

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Part 2: Accurately Measuring Flare Gas — Innovations Promise More Economical Choices


Mar 03, 2014
Matthew Olin, President & CEO
Written By:
Matthew Olin, President & CEO

In my last post on flare gas flow measurement, I shared how the rise in hydraulic fracturing has led to more stringent state and national mandates to regulate the measurement of waste and excess gases that are produced as a result of this process. If you’re affiliated with an oil or gas company, you know […]

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Part 1: Accurately Measuring Flare Gas — Challenges, Solutions, and Opportunities


Feb 25, 2014
Matthew Olin, President & CEO
Written By:
Matthew Olin, President & CEO

If your company is involved with hydraulic fracturing to increase oil and gas production, you’re familiar with the fact that state and national regulations are becoming increasingly stringent. In particular, flare gas now requires the installation of mass flow measurement instruments to measure waste and excess gases burned off as a result of the hydraulic […]

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Chemical Engineering Magazine Article By Sierra’s Founder


Feb 10, 2014
Maryadine Washington, Mar-Com Manager
Written By:
Maryadine Washington, Mar-Com Manager

Sierra’s Founder, Dr. John G. Olin, looks at the Principles of Operation, Installation, Calibration and Best Applications for Thermal Mass Flow Meters… Read the full article in Chemical Engineering Magazine.

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Talking Biogas Production In Europe


Feb 03, 2014
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director
Written By:
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director

Europe is quickly becoming a hotspot for the biogas industry, and Sierra and our local French distributor Alto Instruments took advantage of that fact by exhibiting at BiogazEurope in France. Attendees learned about the entire biomass process, from the bio side of things (mass) to the energy side (electricity). Some trending applications featured at the […]

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Ammonia Gas Flow Measurement Challenges & Solutions


Jan 20, 2014
Jim Oswald, Technical Support Manager
Written By:
Jim Oswald, Technical Support Manager

Measuring and controlling ammonia can be tricky. One mistake during the transition from gas to liquid and your instrumentation is ruined. In the video below, Glen Coblentz, Vice President of North American Sales, gives some tips for successful mass flow measurement and control of ammonia. It could mean the difference between success and a costly mistake! […]

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SmartTrak MFC Highlighed on NOVA TV Program


Jan 13, 2014
Maryadine Washington, Mar-Com Manager
Written By:
Maryadine Washington, Mar-Com Manager

It’s alive! No, I’m not talking about Dr. Frankenstein’s monster. But you’d be surprised by what researchers have discovered in the area of therapeutic hypothermia, or using hydrogen sulfide to slow the body’s demand for oxygen. A recent episode of NOVA, “Making Stuff Colder,” highlights research being conducted by Mark Roth, a biochemist for the […]

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In Search of the Perfect Sensor: Thermal Flow Meter History & Trends


Dec 09, 2013
Maryadine Washington, Mar-Com Manager
Written By:
Maryadine Washington, Mar-Com Manager

What do you do when you have an entrepreneurial bent and a revolutionary idea for flow meter advancement? You start your own company, of course. That’s exactly what our founder, John G. Olin, Ph.D., did in 1973 when he founded Sierra Instruments in Minnesota subsequently moving it west to California. It’s that entrepreneurial spirit, as well […]

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Insertion Flow Meter Straight Run Requirements


Dec 02, 2013
Jim Oswald, Technical Support Manager
Written By:
Jim Oswald, Technical Support Manager

You have specified the correct industrial Thermal insertion mass flow meter and received your brand new meter. Now what? Where do you install the meter for optimal performance? This is where technical expertise comes in, along with a mixture of science and tribal knowledge.  In fact, Sierra has talked for years about a flowmeter being only as good as how it was […]

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Happy Thanksgiving!


Nov 25, 2013
Matthew Olin, President & CEO
Written By:
Matthew Olin, President & CEO

With this Thanksgiving holiday season upon us, it’s important to pause and reflect on the past year with appreciation and gratitude. Sierra hit a major milestone this year celebrating our 40th year in business.   I know deep down that the reason for our longevity is people–our hundreds of employees, local agents spread over more than […]

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Voice of the Customer: Flow Meter Solution for Air Pollutant Measurement


Nov 15, 2013
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager
Written By:
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager

We’re always looking for solutions here at Sierra-ones that always give customers precise, accurate data. It’s what drove Dr. John G. Olin to found Sierra in 1973, with a goal of providing the marketplace with accurate flow meter measurement. It’s what drives our engineering team to continue to advance flow meter design. It’s also what […]

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Part 2: Challenges with Submetering Natural Gas


Nov 11, 2013
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director
Written By:
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director

I previously shared a post on how mid-to-large size facilities can save money by taking the initiative to submeter natural gas usage. The traditional diaphragm meters used by utility companies rely on fixed compensation variables that can lead to inaccuracies and overcharging. While this can affect residential customers, it comes as no surprise that it […]

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Innovation Winner-Precision Gas-Ratio Control Applications


Nov 04, 2013
Maryadine Washington, Mar-Com Manager
Written By:
Maryadine Washington, Mar-Com Manager

Thanks Flow Control Magazine for recognizing Sierra’s QuadraTherm 640i/780i four-sensor thermal mass meter as this year’s Innovation Award winner. We are honored. The recently published case study in Flow Control magazine this month, explores how the QuadraTherm 780i provides a fiberglass manufacturing company with precise gas-ratio control to increase production capacity and gas consumption efficiency. […]

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Part 1: Challenges with Submetering Natural Gas


Oct 28, 2013
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director
Written By:
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director

In an article for Gases & Instrumentation magazine, I explored energy management as it relates to the natural gas industry. Natural gas exists in abundance in this country, with production expected to increase 44 percent by 2040. With such unprecedented growth in production of this natural resource, utility companies must focus on providing the most accurate gas […]

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Part 2: Emerging Trends of Thermal Flow Meters


Oct 21, 2013
Jesse Yoder
Written By:
Jesse Yoder

Last week in the first part of my guest post, I shared some of the reasons why the Coriolis flow meter has cornered such a large part of the flowmeter measurement market. Accuracy is the main reason why this type of flowmeter has been so commonly used in industrial applications up to this point. But […]

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Part 1: Emerging Trends of Thermal Flowmeters


Oct 09, 2013
Jesse Yoder
Written By:
Jesse Yoder

In this guest post, I’ll be comparing the Coriolis and Thermal flowmeter markets, an interesting undertaking when you consider some of the facts. Both technologies were introduced about the same time, in the mid-1970s. But the worldwide Coriolis meter market has grown to exceed $1 billion, while the Thermal flowmeter market is valued at less […]

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How to Measure Air Flow Rate–Not As Easy As it Appears


Oct 04, 2013
Morgan Zealear, Engineer
Written By:
Morgan Zealear, Engineer

If we look at what is considered low flow measurement of air mass flow rate,  those applications ranging from 0 to 10 sccm up to 0 to 1000 slpm ranges, there is a right way and a wrong way to measure. It’s an inherent problem many of our customers face before they find the right […]

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Totalize Multiple Gases Independently: Watch Video!


Sep 26, 2013
Brian Estep, Software Engineer
Written By:
Brian Estep, Software Engineer

The need to measure, totalize, and monetize gas flow is not going away. In fact, the requirement to accurately totalize and monetize gas is becoming even more critical with our boom in natural gas and other industrial processes. Almost all mass flow meter companies have the ability to totalize one gas being measured. This is pretty standard […]

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Break from the Shackles-Mid-to-Large Size Facilities Verify Utility Company Billing


Sep 20, 2013
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager
Written By:
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager

As we have all been hearing in the news, natural gas is becoming a very valuable and abundant natural resource. Almost all of this increase is due to the projected growth in shale gas production which will grow to 16.7 trillion cubic feet in 2040. Now comes the big question: how are utility companies going […]

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Part 3: Biogas Flow Meter Measurement-The Solution


Sep 16, 2013
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director
Written By:
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director

In recent weeks, I’ve shared some exciting advancements in the biogas industry in regards to renewable energy management. From harnessing biogas energy from landfills to the digester gas produced at wastewater treatment plants, one thing is paramount: Adjusting for changing gas composition is critical to obtaining accurate flow meter measurement for optimal biogas energy collection.  […]

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Market Drivers: Thermal Flow Meters Gain Share Through Innovation


Aug 29, 2013
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager
Written By:
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager

Flow measurement requirements are not going away. If anything, market drivers like renewable energy, hydraulic fracturing of natural gas, and stricter emissions requirements are prompting a growing amount of industrial customers to find the best flow measurement solution for their application. In The History & Evolution of Thermal Flowmeters, author, Jesse Yoder states, “While the […]

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Innovation Recognized!


Aug 22, 2013
Maryadine Washington, Mar-Com Manager
Written By:
Maryadine Washington, Mar-Com Manager

We’re honored that Flow Control Magazine has recognized Sierra once again with its Innovation Award.  And we’re also proud that we have been a winner of  Flow Control’s Innovation award for nine straight years. What drives innovation? It’s the desire to push into uncharted territory and discover.  Innovation is what drives Sierra’s engineering team—the excitement of  […]

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4 Things to Look for in an Online Industrial Flow Meter Store


Aug 16, 2013
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager
Written By:
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager

As the e-commerce business model grows to include the mass flow meter market, there are some online players that have emerged. Over the last decade, companies like Instrumart, Omega, and others have entered the light and heavy industrial e-commerce game. Tech savvy 30-somethings are coming of age and embracing online buying as the norm rather […]

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Biogas Flow Meter Measurement: The Flooded Market


Jul 31, 2013
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director
Written By:
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director

In my recently published article in Biomass Products & Technology , Precise Biogas Flow Measurement: Overcoming the Challenges of Changing Gas Composition, I highlight the nationwide search for alternative energy sources.  In the article, I note that this search has led to increased interest in sources of biogas energy specifically. Many flow meter companies have jumped into […]

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Biogas Energy Production: Why Accurate Flow Measurement Is Critical


Jul 25, 2013
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager
Written By:
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager

The buzz around biogas continues to grow and with good reason. Efforts to find renewable sources of energy are in full swing, and harnessing energy from landfill gas or digester gas into biogas is a promising solution to the problem of high oil prices. In the July 2013 issue of Biomass Products & Technology, Sierra’s […]

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2013 Laboratory Equipment Winner: SmartTrak 100 Is Flow Meter of Choice


Jul 17, 2013
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director
Written By:
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director

While there are many mass flow meters and controllers on the market, we believe our SmartTrak 100 stands out from the crowd, and the readers of Laboratory Equipment agree. The SmartTrak 100 has been named the best device in the Meters, Monitors and Gauges Category in the 5th annual Laboratory Equipment Readers’ Choice Awards. The […]

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Bluetooth Wireless Portable Liquid Flow Measurement Made Possible


Jun 25, 2013
Maryadine Washington, Mar-Com Manager
Written By:
Maryadine Washington, Mar-Com Manager

As you might have guessed, Sierra has a passion for flow measurement and we are always striving for ways to improve our flow meters and processes to give you the best accuracy possible for your application. Today, we are pleased to announce the release of our new InnovaSonic 210 Portable with Bluetooth Wireless Android Tablet […]

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New Video: MFC – How to Set Up, Mount & Leak Test


Apr 26, 2013
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager
Written By:
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager

Jim Oswald, our technical support guru, has had some great response from our new videos. He gets call all day about mass flow control installation questions, so we hope these step-by-step videos can help you set up quickly and get to your work at hand. Our last technical support video walked you through the unpacking process […]

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Article Highlights Advancements in Flow Meter Accuracy


Mar 26, 2013
Maryadine Washington, Mar-Com Manager
Written By:
Maryadine Washington, Mar-Com Manager

Thanks Flow Control magazine for the great coverage and helping to spread the word to our customers about new technology to improve flow measurement accuracy, which always improves plant efficiency and saves customers money in the long run. John G. Olin, PhD, founder of Sierra Instruments and inventor of a number of flow industry firsts, […]

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Impossible, Right? MFC Next Day Shipment!


Mar 20, 2013
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager
Written By:
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager

Buyers of high-performance mass flow controllers or any flow instrumentation for that matter, have come to expect long product delivery lead times as an industry standard. It is accepted that many high-performance flow instruments need to be customized and calibrated for a specific application. And this takes time. Sometimes lead times are up to 4-6 weeks. But, for practical business […]

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Innovation on the Rise! QuadraTherm is a Gold Winner of the 2013 Golden Gas Award


Mar 13, 2013
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager
Written By:
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager

Our engineering team has worked tirelessly to bring to fruition a mass flow meter that provides you, our customers, with greater accuracy and increased efficiency, and our new QuadraTherm 640i/780i thermal mass flow meter is the result. You can imagine how pleased our team was to learn that the Quadratherm flowmeter has been named a […]

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Part 3: Cold Weather and Mass Air Flow Meter Gas Temperature (Gas Properties)


Mar 07, 2013
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director
Written By:
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director

In Parts One and Two of this series, we looked at the effects of ambient temperature on mass air flow meters such as Sierra’s FastFlo™ 620S and our new QuadraTherm™ Model 640i. As discussed, cold weather has few physical effects on the meter, but can degrade accuracy due to stem conduction, unless accounted for, as does […]

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Part 2: Cold Weather and Mass Air Flow Meter Accuracy (Stem Conduction)


Mar 01, 2013
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director
Written By:
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director

Part 2: Cold Weather and Mass Air Flow Meter Accuracy-Effects of Stem Conduction In Part One, we looked at the effects of cold weather on mass air flow meters like Sierra’s Steel-Mass® Model 640S and our new QuadraTherm™ Model 640i. As discussed, cold weather typically doesn’t cause any physical damage to the flow meter, but it […]

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Cold Weather and Your Mass Flow Sensor


Feb 22, 2013
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director
Written By:
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director

Baby It’s Cold Outside Sierra is a global company, so we sell our mass air flow sensors into some pretty extreme cold weather environments.   Indeed, we are seeing more and more applications in the far North, where immersible thermal flow meters like Sierra’s Steel-Mass® Model 640S and our new QuadraTherm™ Model 640i are used in […]

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Fit for the King: Flow Meters & CO2 at Budweiser


Jan 11, 2013
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager
Written By:
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager

When the King of Beers calls, we listen. As the #1 imported beer in China, Budweiser needed better control of its carbon dioxide (CO2) gas mass flow measurement at its Fujian Province plant. After trying several other, non-direct mass flow measurement technologies, engineers chose Sierra’s immersible SteelMass® 640S thermal mass flow meter. The reason behind their choice was that […]

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RFQ’s of the Past – Pick interesting RFQ’s we have done and write about them


Dec 30, 2012
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director
Written By:
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director

Cash Flow! Reduce Operations & Maintenance Costs for Improved Profits.


Dec 20, 2012
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager
Written By:
Erica Giannini, Marketing Manager

It all starts with measurement, then you can manage costs efficiently.  Only use as much natural gas, water and steam as your process needs and improve inefficient sub-processes.  Fluid flow is expensive; precision measurement improves the bottom line profit of your business.  Here are a few examples of flowmeters commonly used in industry to reduce operations […]

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QuadraTherm Flowmeter Puts New Spin on Fiberglass [Case Study]


Dec 04, 2012
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director
Written By:
Scott Rouse, Product Line Director

What a waste! That’s what I thought when I learned how much material is rejected and how much gas is consumed during the fiberglass insulation manufacturing process. The biggest losses occur during the melting, spinning and subsequent cooling of silica, a key ingredient in fiberglass. For those who work in this industry, it’s a never-ending […]

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New QuadraTherm Flow Meter: iTherm Expanding Gas Library


Nov 27, 2012
Matthew Olin, President & CEO
Written By:
Matthew Olin, President & CEO

The iTherm gas library stores proprietary gas packets, which are  analogous to the DNA of a specific gas. It stores all the parameters needed to instantly calculate the thermodynamic and transport properties of every gas or gas mixture versus temperature and pressure. Currently, the library has mapped 18 gases and mixtures, and it continues to grow […]

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New QuadaTherm Flow Sensor: with iTherm, It Learns!


Nov 20, 2012
Matthew Olin, President & CEO
Written By:
Matthew Olin, President & CEO

With iTherm, It Learns… QuadraTherm’s four-sensor technology provides the critical inputs for iTherm’s living, learning algorithm set and gas library to accurately manage changes in gas and pipe selection, gas temperature, gas pressure, and outside temperature. Our revolutionary thermal mass flow meter with iTherm solves the First Law of Thermodynamics (for Thermal Dispersion Technology) in a fraction […]

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