On the lookout for savings potential, plant managers are increasingly interested in auxiliary processes. To ensure accurate balancing of steam, measuring devices are required that not only measure accurately but that also feature an appropriately large measuring range to measure heavily fluctuating flow rates.
Systems that monitor the consumption of steam, cooling water and condensate extremely accurately are being installed more and more frequently in the process industries. Not only do they measure and optimise actual consumption, they also notify in the case of expensive peaks in consumption. When measuring steam flow, orifice measurement systems are often used. Although these systems are easy to use, the disadvantage is that they feature a smaller measuring range, lower accuracy and increased pressure loss. And when it comes to fluctuating pressures and temperatures, the measurements are generally too inaccurate as orifices often do not feature pressure or temperature compensation.
However, vortex flow measuring methods have proven successful in these processes. In fact, the Krohne Messtechnik Optiswirl 4070 has already been installed in many supply processes. It reliably measures the operating, standard volumetric and mass flow of conductive and non-conductive liquids, gases and vapours. A feature that is particularly appreciated in practice is that the temperature and pressure measurement as well as the correction calculator have already been integrated into the Optiswirl. This enables the device to measure both pressure and temperature as well as the volume flow, using the data to calculate the precise measured value. The result is extremely low measuring accuracy when measuring steam at 1% when measuring volume flow and 1.5% when measuring mass flow (each based on the measured value). Classic systems with separate pressure and temperature sensors as well as flow calculators feature system accuracies of 3–5%. Thanks to the integrated pressure and temperature measurement, any costs for the installation and wiring of additional sensors or correction calculators are eliminated. A further convincing factor was the maintenance-free nature of the device compared to orifice measuring systems which must be dismantled for maintenance and then reinstalled.
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