Tag Archives: InnovaMass Vortex

The First Vortex Flow Meter with Apps Wins Innovation Award!


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 have recognized the InnovaMass as one of the most truly innovative products around.

What Makes InnovaMass iSeries Innovative?*

Simply put, it has Apps!  The InnovaMass 241i iSeries vortex flowmeter has been specifically designed for precise flow energy management to reduce costs and increase productivity in steam, compressed air, natural gas and water applications. The key innovation versus traditional vortex meters is Sierra’s Raptor II OS, which enables software Apps like Sierra’s FloPro and Dial-A-Fluid,
ValidCal Diagnostics, and Meter Tuning.

FloPro is used to improve point-velocity accuracy. Dial-A-Pipe and Dial-A-Fluid are used to change pipe size and fluids without loss of accuracy.  ValidCal Diagnostics makes field calibration and meter health validation easy, and Meter Tuning cancels out external noise to improve accuracy.

InnovaMassImagesOther key features include an insertion version for 2 inches (50.8 mm) up to 72 inches (2M); inline version to 8 inches (DN 200); Accuracy as god as 0.7 percent of reading; temperature to 392°F (200°C); pressure to 1500 psig (103 barg); volumetric or multivariable measurement of gases, liquids, and steam with a single pipe insertion point.

InnovaMass iSeries vortex flow meter measures up to five process variables with one process connection: volumetric flow rate, mass flow, density, pressure, and temperature, which is ideal for highly accurate steam flow measurement. By compensating for temperature and pressure variations, you get true mass flow to maximize your steam productivity and reduce cost-of-ownership.

Again, thanks to the readers of Flow Control for their vote and the confidence in Sierra.


*Official Flow Control Innovation Award write up from the September 2016 Flow Control issue.

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

retractor-equation-2jpgAccurately 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 the meter. This is just not practical.

For many facilities, “shutting the steam down” for flow meter installation is cost prohibitive due to the loss of energy allocation or halting critical process.  One common practice to install steam flow meters into the active flow is to “hot tap” the flow meter into the pipe without shutting down at all.

As you can imagine, due to high temperatures and pressures hot tapping in large pipes is an application that very few flow measurement devices can handle.

Sierra’s insertion retractor for the InnovaMass Vortex Flow Meter, however, can be easily “hot tapped” into any size pipe with process connections from 150 lb. flange up to 600 lb. flange with its newly re-designed retractor.

Watch our “how-to” video demonstrating the newly designed, compact, ergonomic InnovaMass iSeries vortex flow meter insertion/retractor which makes hot tapping into large pipes easy, no matter the pipe orientation. It has a 180 degree rotation and works well in tight spaces. The video also shows how to install the retractor, how to find the centerline of the pipe, and how to actuate up and down. Use one retractor for multiple products!

Already have a 241i with a retractor? What are your thoughts?

Need additional information? Visit our guide to the InnovaMass 241i.

Sierra’s Biggest Stories from 2016


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 new initiatives we started in 2016 that will continue to grow in 2017.

Minute Flow Tip YouTube Videos

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 the “Minute Flow Tips” video series we launched in 2016.  We cover a variety of flow measurement control tips to help you strengthen your flow measurement capability to improve your overall process quality.

Application Tech Notes

Sometimes you need quick information about a specific application, that’s where our new Tech Notes come in. You can quickly and easily learn about the challenges of an application and which flow meter or controller will help overcome this and provide precise measurement. You can currently download Tech Notes on Upstream Oil & Gas, Burner Control in Manufacturing and Beverage Manufacturing Applications with more applications coming in 2017.

Sierra on Instagram

In 2016 we expanded our social media presence to Instagram. You can now follow us to get an inside glimpse at what happens at Sierra and view photos of flow meter applications from around the globe. Have a photo of a Sierra flow meter in action? Send it to us and you may just see your name and photo in our feed!

Most Popular Blog Posts from 2016

Our Let’s Talk Flow Blog gives us an opportunity to share with you the latest happenings at Sierra, product news and flow meter education. Here are the top three articles our readers found most interesting in 2016. If you missed one, click through and catch up!

boilermactlogo-3Tuning Your Boiler for EPA Boiler MACT Compliance

Compliance with the EPA’s Boiler MACT regulations was a hot topic in 2016 with the three-year grace period on Major Source Boiler MACT coming to an end. In this article, we discuss the regulations, three ways to tune a boiler for compliance with the regulations and how flow meters can be used to help companies comply.

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

innovamass-landing-page-slideMost 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. In this article, we discuss the challenges of steam flow management and which type of flow meter is most accurate and maximizes steam productivity best.


sierra flare gas solutionsHow to Reduce Methane Emissions with Thermal Mass Flow Meters

Meeting EPA CFR 40 standards for methane emissions in the oil and gas industries continues to be a hot topic. In this blog post, we discuss how flow meters can help companies comply and Sierra’s solutions.

Oldies, but Goodies

We publish a lot of new content each year but there is some content from previous years that continues in popularity and helps customers. Here’s a look at the top three articles from previous years that are still popular with readers.

Flow Meter Do’s and Don’ts with Ammonia

Flashback to Pitcon 2012 for the inspiration for this blog post. There were many engineers and researchers stopping by our booth that year in need of a solution for ammonia flow measurement. Find out the precautions you need to take when using a flow meter in an ammonia application.

Insertion Flow Meter Straight Run Requirements

This instructional post continues to be a helpful resource for those deciding on the most optimal placement of their industrial thermal insertion mass flow meter. Jim Oswald, Sierra’s Technical Support Manager, shares his technical expertise and tribal knowledge to help you find the best point of insertion.

Wireless Networks for the Digital Flow Meter, Part 1

Need to improve network speed to flow meters that are wired into your infrastructure? Wireless communication continues to be a popular topic and this post provides an example of how you can use wireless technology as a solution to this problem.

2017 Preview

This year, as we do every year, we have big plans to make your experience with Sierra even better and more engaging.  Keep an eye out for our increasing library of Application Tech Notes, Infographics, and videos to both inform and help guide you in flowmeter choice and selection. In addition, we have some very exciting product launches and improvements that we know you will love. As always, Sierra will continue to serve our community through outreach programs and focus on employee and customer training programs.

Stay tuned in 2017 – It’s going to be a great year!

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

oil and gas refineryFacilities 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 and hot water.

The next challenge is to find the right flow meters for these gas, liquid, and steam applications. Often many different technologies are needed depending on the type of fluid being measured and many different flow meter companies must be used. Dealing with different companies and technologies can be very time consuming, expensive, and ultimately frustrating.

Sierra is tackling this issue with our new Big-3™ flow energy management strategy. Sierra now offers facilities managers a “one-stop shop” for all flow meters needed for effective flow energy management—all made in the USA and supported globally by our network of over 150 locations in over 50 countries.

We design and manufacture thermal mass flow meters for accurate compressed air and natural gas measurement, vortex shedding flow meters for steam and water measurement, and transit-time ultrasonic flow meters for liquid flow measurement. Product commissioning and training, lifetime tech support, and a global network of flow experts from one company make it easy to install and operate all gas, liquid and steam flow meters.

In addition, for easy integration into your facility, Sierra’s “Big-3” thermal, vortex, and ultrasonic (TVU) flow meters have:

  • Sierra’s commitment to great sensors with lifetime warranty—over 40 years of flow meter innovation and expertise
  • Shared firmware platform—Raptor OS operating system
  • Shared software apps for ease of use, so no learning new software and local display interface menu structures for each device
  • Major focus on excellent, fully automated, calibration facilities
  • Broad application capability (gas, liquid, steam)
  • One company, one point of contact for all three flow metering technologies
  • All designed, built and calibrated by Sierra in Monterey, CA USA

Watch Video

Let me explain more about Sierra’s new Big-3™ strategy and how it can help you transform your flow energy measurement strategy by watching this short video.

Download the Big-3 overview brochure.

Preventable Mistakes with Vortex Flow Meters

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, the Director of Engineering, has some useful tips for successful vortex installations and common mistakes to avoid to get the most out of your vortex flow meters in your application.

Vortex Flow Meter Mistakes to Avoid

#1 – Water Hammer

If you’ve ever turned on your shower and the pipes made a loud bang, you’ve probably experienced the phenomenon called water hammer. Most commonly caused by opening or closing a valve too quickly, it occurs when a mass of water zooms through a pipe with enough momentum to pack a serious punch.

Commercial pipelines often allow these “water hammers” to reach such high speeds that they can damage the flow meter sensor. To alleviate the “water hammer” phenomenon,  try to avoid condensation in steam systems by opening and closing valves gradually to equalize pressure.

#2 – Incorrect Range or Pipe Size

Vortex flow meters are highly specialized devices, and each one is made-to-order based on customer application specifications. This means an out-of-the-box meter will only work for the original order’s conditions. Usually, you can’t make any changes once the meter is installed in the field. However, the software apps offered by Sierra’s InnovaMass iSeries allow you to change variables in-the-field with dial-a-pipe, and tune meter factors in-situ to fit your needs.  You can also adjust your vortex meter via the local pushbutton display interface. In addition, if you think your application may approach the meter’s maximum pressure or temperature, it’s better to buy a higher-rated meter than risk overheating or over pressurizing.

Now that you are aware of these preventable mistakes, think about your vortex meter installation process and specification process.

If you need a refresher, watch this short video by Director of Engineering, Kam Bansal, for an in-depth explanation on how to solve some of the common vortex installation mistakes.

Have technical questions? Comment below or contact us.

Striving For Perfection: Flow Energy Partnership Improves Geothermal Energy Production


Since the early twentieth century, geothermal energy has been used to produce electricity. In the 1980’s and 90’s, rapid expansion in the demand for geothermal energy put pressure on suppliers to reduce costs and increase efficiencies. Now geothermal energy production is becoming a common practice around the globe.

One of the largest energy companies in Turkey is blazing the trail for renewable geothermal energy production in the region, including the Middle East and Asia. They “consider sustainable energy a key element of sustainable development” which is the energy vision that drives Turkey and the region’s development. This major energy company has 3 geothermal power plants totaling 129 megawatts and 2 wind farms totaling 191 megawatts in Turkey. At the heart of these the geothermal energy production for this company, always remain: how can we produce geothermal energy in the most efficient way possible?

The Scoop on the Company’s Geothermal Process Needs

For efficient Geothermal energy production,  water is heated from the earth’s natural heat in geothermal wells, then is cooled off and sent back into the earth to be reused in the energy-generating process.  Companies need a water flow meter to accurately measure the water in this application, which is critical for assessing the efficiency of energy production.

To solve this water flow measurement problem, the energy company contacted, Elekon, one of Sierra’s flow partners in Turkey. They originally specified an an electromagnetic flow meter to measure the water before it travels back into the earth to be reused.  However, Elekon’s,  Robert Benbanaste (CEO/Owner of Elekon), noticed right away that the pipeline size was too large for an inline electromagnetic flowmeter (over 48” for the line size). Robert had the perfect solution for this application. Sierra’s 241i insertion vortex flow meter.

The application flexibility gained with insertion flow meters, versus the inline mag meter, is perfect for applications with large pipe sizes. The 241i insertion vortex can handle applications in pipes up to 72 inches (2M) in diameter and larger and has hot tap easy installation with an on board retractor.  With the 241i, volumetric or multivariable measurement is possible with a single pipe insertion point, greatly reducing installation and maintenance costs.

Hakan, one of Elekon’s seasoned application field engineers, worked right with the facilities managers at the company to hot top the vortex 241i into their pipe-fast, easy, and painless (see above photo). ATEX certification was also important for the company. ATEX is a certification by FM Approvals Ltd that certifies that the 214i vortex flow meter complies with the Essential Health and Safety Requirements relating to the design and construction of equipment intended for use in potentially explosive atmospheres. The 240i and 241i Inline and Insertion Mass Vortex flow meters meet those requirements, specifically those relating to the process temperature and pressure.

Armed with their new vortex flow meters, the Turkish energy company is most pleased with the success of the cost savings and energy efficiency they have gained since their installation. They are so happy with the solution that they are placing an additional order—now that’s a sign of process success!

Want to get energy process gains in your application for vortex technology? Check out Sierra’s line of InnovaMass vortex flow meters.

If you’re not sure what type of meter you need for your project, contact an engineer today for a free consultation. We’ll help you find the right tools for your process—anyday.

Sierra’s Top Flow Blogs of 2017

best of 2017

Another year has come and gone, and it certainly was a big one for Sierra and our customers! Let’s look back at the news and top content that we shared with you in 2017.

Most Popular Blog Posts from 2017

We love sharing our news and providing useful flow meter information with you through our Let’s Talk Flow Blog. Here are the posts that resonated best with our readers last year, complete with links so you can catch up if you missed any.



Measure All Flow Energy in Your Facility-ONE Solution-Three Metering Technologies 

The pressure is on your shoulders to make the smartest decisions in 2018 to measure all the gas, liquid, and steam flow energy in your facility. In this video, learn how ONE complete flow energy management solution can simplify the flow energy management in your factory.


minute.flow.tip.John.S.1.3.17[Minute Flow Tip Video] Mass Flow Versus Volumetric Flow Technology

What’s the Mass Flow Advantage? Chief Engineer, John Smitherman explains the vast differences between gas mass flow rate and volumetric flow rate.  Learn why mass flow technology greatly improves measurement accuracy in this Minute Flow Tip Video.


scott.video.207i.installation.1.3.17Making Ultrasonic Liquid Flow Meter Installation Easier
Clamp-on Ultrasonic flow meters are the perfect flow meter for liquid flow measurement. But finding the perfect signal can sometimes be difficult. Sierra’s Product Line Director, Scott Rouse, demonstrates how on board Software Apps on an InnovaSonic 207i ultrasonic liquid flow meter make set up simply with an easy “12-step” program.


compod.blog.2017.Best.of.1.3.17How to Supercharge the SmartTrak Mass Flow Controller with Compod
Learn how to streamline, simplify, and save time and money with the Compod upgrade for the SmartTrak 100 mass flow meter and controller.  Set up simple process control systems driven by SmartTrak with Compod without the need for PLCs or computers.




4-20.image.2017.best.of.1.3.18 Understanding  4-20 mA Current Loop Communications
Many times, customers ask  “how do I get accurate 4-20mA output readings?” for 4-20mA output devices. Kam Bansal, Director of Engineering, explains 4-20mA communications protocol, step-by-step to dispel the complications and confusion around the protocol to get you set up and running.



Oldies, but Goodies

The more things change, the more they stay the same. Or so it seems based on the continued popularity of these older posts that continue to draw readers.

Tuning Your Boiler for EPA Boiler MACT Compliance
Our most popular new post in 2016 remained hot through 2017 as the three-year grace period on the EPA’s Boiler MACT expired in January 2017. In the article, we discussed the regulations, three ways to tune a boiler for compliance, and how flow meters can help your company comply.

Flow Meter Do’s and Don’ts with Ammonia
Five years after it was published, this post is still one of our most popular. We knew we had to write this post when a number of engineers and researchers stopped by our booth at Pitcon in 2012 to ask about ammonia flow measurement. Years later, the precautions stand true and are critical if you are using a flow meter for an ammonia application.

Methods & Pitfalls of In-Situ Calibration Validation of Thermal Flowmeters
“In-situ” means in place, meaning that you don’t have to return your instrument to the facility to have it recalibrated and recertified. You can certainly see the allure of that, but there are pitfalls. Read this post to learn how to get reliable results and avoid false positives.

We hope you enjoyed this look back at 2017 and that you continue to follow us through 2018. We look forward to bringing you more of the best flow information online in the coming year.

Reducing the Likelihood of Fluid Hammers In Steam Applications

innovamass water hammer Sierra

Many of us have heard the sound of pipes banging as we turn a faucet on or off. This sound is the water in the pipe being forced to stop or suddenly change direction and is called “water hammer.”

Did you know that water hammer is not just limited to water pipes? In fact, water hammer, more generally called  “fluid hammer” or “hydraulic shock,” is possible with any gas, liquid, or steam.

The Main Cause of Fluid Hammer in Steam Pipes

How does fluid hammer in steam piping occur? In many steam plants, steam under high pressure is held behind an isolation valve (also called a “steam stop”). If you open that valve too fast, the steam enters the cold downstream piping and condenses into water.

In some cases, this slug of condensed water can act like a bullet. This hydraulic shock happens because steam flow velocity can be ten times faster than water flow.

Pushed by the steam behind it, the water bullet can break and shear off anything in its way, like gate valves, orifices, and insertion meters. Think of shooting a drop of water through a straw.

Reducing the Likelihood of Fluid Hammers In Steam Applications

Scott with InnovaMass 241i

One of our flow energy management experts, Scott, with a vortex flow meter that takes the guess work out of knowing your steam pressure.

Steam fluid hammers can be damaging, but fortunately, they are preventable. Here are some ways you can avoid fluid hammers in your steam pipes:

  • Warm up the downstream piping to minimize condensation. This is why most steam plants have a bypass valve around all their big stop valves so they can bleed steam into the pipe.
  • Install steam traps to collect any condensation that does form.
  • Monitor temperature, pressure, and steam velocity. These metrics should be watched closely, especially during startup. Having the ability to monitor and adjust your flow meters in the plant with apps is crucial to not only preventing water hammer, but ensuring optimal energy flow management.

Do you really know how much steam pressure you have flowing in your facility’s application? If not, talk to a flow energy management expert today.

If you want to learn more about a product that takes the guessing out of knowing your steam pressure, check out our InnovaMass Vortex Flow Meters for your steam application >.


How a Vortex Flow Meter Works

Vortex flow meters are increasingly becoming the flow technology of choice for gas, liquid, and steam flow measurement. Vortex flow meters are ideal for measuring saturated and supersaturated steam in large facilities to improve steam production efficiency and allocation. Volumetric water flow and high flow gas measurements are also strong applications for vortex flow meters. Let’s take a closer look at how the vortex flow meter works and what makes it the ideal choice for many gas, liquid, and steam industrial flow applications.

What is a Vortex Flow Meter?

A vortex flow meter utilizes the fluid dynamics principle of vortex shedding to calculate the velocity of liquids, gases, and steam, across a wide variety of applications.

Vortex Flow Meter for Steam Measurement

Figure 1. Vortex meter in steam measurement application. 

How Do Vortex Flow Meters Work?

Vortex meters use a dimensioned bluff, sometimes called a shedder bar, to generate the phenomenon known as Kármán vortex street in which vortices begin to form and oscillate. Using a variety of sensor technologies, the natural frequency of these oscillating vortices is converted into a digital signal which is then processed through the meter’s electronics to calculate flow.


Vortex Sensor Principle of Operation

Figure 2. Vortex sensor cutaway showing vortex principle of operation.


Von Karman Vortex Street

Figure 3. The Von Karman Vortex Street.


Types of Vortex Sensor Technologies

Some of the sensor technologies used to measure the natural frequency produced during vortex shedding include:

  • Piezoelectric crystals and ceramics – These materials produce an electrical charge in response to an applied mechanical stress. As vortices pass the sensor, they apply the stress needed for the piezoelectric material to produce a charge. Polarity may be used to distinguish the alternating current and create a digital frequency.
  • Delta P sensors – The formation of vortices creates a dynamic pressure in accordance with Bernoulli’s Principle . The pressure is lowest at the point of the vortex core and increases as that point moves away from the center. By using a Delta P sensor to measure these pressure changes as the vortices pass, a digital frequency can be generated.
  • Ultrasonic sensors – Ultrasonic sensors measure the time it takes a generated signal to travel from one transducer to another. Because the alternating vortices being shed from a bluff rotate in different directions, the signal being sent from an ultrasonic sensor will speed up or slow down based on the direction of rotation relative to the direction the signal is traveling. This shift in speed, when compared to a constant, can be used to create a digital frequency.

    Transit-time ultrasonic principle of operation

    Figure 4. Transit-time ultrasonic principle of operation

Advantages of Vortex Flow Meters

Vortex flow meter technology offers an accurate and natural occurring method for measuring flow. Due to the natural occurrence of vortex shedding when a bluff is introduced, this method of flow measurement can be used with many types of fluids, gasses, and even steam. The lack of moving mechanical components also make for a robust construction that can hold up in some of the toughest application environments.

Is a vortex flow meter right for your application? Learn about Sierra’s vortex volumetric flow and multivariable mass flow meters to find out.

240S Inline

240i Inline

240i Inline

241S Insertion

241S Insertion

241i Insertion

241i Insertion

Bringing Energy Efficiency and Cost Savings to Veteran’s Facilities

va blog image

As the infrastructure of our Veterans Affairs (VA) facilities age and government-driven energy efficiency mandates rise, VA facilities’ engineers are faced with a decision to upgrade existing equipment or replace older equipment in order to improve energy efficiency. Dealing with the upgrade or replace decision is a big one. Replacing older equipment is costly, but in the end, newer technology may integrate better into automation systems and realize even greater cost saving in energy over the long haul. What kind of data do facilities managers need to make these critical energy-saving decisions?

The Best Place To Start-Ask the Right Questions

A great place to start is by getting accurate “flow energy” measurements of the methane/natural gas, water, and steam flow in your major operations, especially in boilers and steam flow systems. Flow energy is defined as “flows that cost money,” like natural gas, compressed air, water, and steam. Since none of these commodities are “free,” VA facilities managers must strive to measure their “energy” usage accurately, determine the processes that use the most energy, and make them more efficient either by upgrading or replacing the equipment.

  1. Is your boiler running at optimal levels?
    To assess the efficiency of your boiler’s combustion, it’s critical to get accurate inlet methane measurements. Once you have accurate methane measurements, you can answer the key question: Is my boiler running too rich or too lean? If your boiler is running “rich”, which means it is using more methane than is needed for optimal combustion, you not only waste money on natural gas costs but also emit more hazardous air pollutants into our environment-every molecule of methane that is not burned increases emissions. If you’re running too “lean”, your boiler is not at optimal combustion, so you are not producing steam at capacity. Once you have determined the health of your boiler, you can either make the decision to replace your aging boiler or use measurements from thermal mass flow meters to better tune your current boiler. Learn More about Boiler Efficiency.
  2. How much steam are your boilers producing? How much steam are you allocating?
    Efficient steam production is critical for optimizing energy at Veteran Affairs facilities. The steam produced by a boiler must be measured in order to determine boiler efficiency. Accurate steam flow measurements at the production point and key allocation points will give you a true assessment of how efficient steam is running through the facility and helps identify leaks in the system. Now the question becomes what technology provides the most accurate steam flow measurement? 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. Changes in pressure and temperature will change the mass flow rate of steam. Even a “small” change of 10 percent in steam pressure will result in a 10 percent error in non-compensated mass flow. This means that, in a typical differential pressure measurement installation, the volumetric flow rate measured by the device must be compensated by measuring temperature and pressure, and then these three measurements (ΔP, T and P) integrated with a flow computer to calculate mass flow.
    Insertion multivariable vortex flow meters allow one instrument and one process connection to simultaneously measure mass flow rate, temperature, pressure, volumetric flow rate, and fluid density. The density of saturated steam varies with either temperature or pressure, while superheated steam varies with temperature and pressure, so multivariable vortex flow meters assure the flow meter’s density calculations are correct, and therefore, mass steam flow measurements are correct maximizing your steam productivity. Multivariable vortex flow meters provide steam accuracy of 1 percent of reading, 30:1 turndown plus pressure and temperature compensation.Again, you may need to upgrade aging steam flow infrastructure or simply tune your system with accurate steam flow measurement to save on cost and fulfill efficiency mandates.
  3. How much water are you using for key processes?
    In boiler tuning, the feedwater flow to the boiler is an important measurement, since you need to measure the efficiency at which the boiler turns this feed water into steam.  You may also need to measure the thermal/BTU energy.  A clamp-on ultrasonic flow meter is ideal for this type of water measurement due to high accuracy at low and high flows, installation with no pipe cutting or process shutdown, and immunity to external noise. Coupled with temperature sensors on the “hot” and “cold” legs, the thermal energy gained or lost can be measured. This thermal/BTU measurement is critical for optimizing central heating and cooling systems that provide HVAC to the entire facility.

Big-3 Eases the Burden of Recommissioning  

To address the flow measurement of the methane, steam, and water for such a large scale equipment upgrade, Veteran Affairs facility managers would typically work with up to 5 different companies with varying technologies to get these critical flow energy measurements. Imagine only working with one supplier for all of your gas, liquid and steam flow measurements. Sierra provides flow experts and Big-3 technology for all gas, liquid, and steam flow measurements. The Big-3 includes:

  • QuadraTherm 640i/780i, the most accurate thermal flow meters on the market for methane and air flow measurement
  • Insertion mulitvariable InnovaMass 240i/241i vortex flow meters for steam flow measurements-easy hot tap installation
  • Clamp on InnovaSonic 207i ultrasonic water flow meters with energy/BTU capability
  • Specialized, local support team for all three technologies
  • Shared software applications and operating system for easy integration
  • Designed, built, and calibrated in the USA by Sierra

Learn more about Flow Energy Measurement of All gas, liquid, steam flow.

Watch Flow Energy Management Videos