Flow Computers – why flow meters need them

If flow meters are the legs of flow measurement, flow computers are the brain. As the complexity and scale of energy systems increase flow computers provide an automated, accurate and efficient solution to enhance flow measurement, control and data management.  

How flow computers work

Flow meters sense the gas or liquid properties flowing through the pipes; the flow computer computes these raw signals and interprets it into readable measurements e.g. fluid temperature, pressure, density and viscosity. Flow computers are also used for data logging, communication, remote metering, alarming and control functions – tasks that flow meters cannot do without a flow computer.

The flow measurement sensors on flow computers have mathematical expressions (equations) which describe how they interpret the input signals into readable flow measurement outputs. There are different expressions for different materials to be measured and different types of flow meter being used, which vary from simple ones to those which require second order effects.

Typical applications of flow computers

The flow meters that are most commonly used with flow computers are turbine, vortex, positive displacement, orifice, magnetic and a number of special types of flow meter. However other types of flow meter call for a flow computer when the user requires local information display, data communications, control, alarming systems and data logging functions.

The advantages of flow computers

  • Flow computers offer a number of performance enhancing functions e.g. square root functions and more elaborate lineralisation tables tailored to the flow meter type in use.
  • They can correct the changes in the physical dimensions of the flow meter due to temperature and the changes of the material being measured.
  • Flow data can be measured, logged and stored remotely.
  • Flow computation is flexible to use depending on your requirements.  

Find out about how our SFC3000 flow computer can enhance the accuracy of your liquid hydro-carbon and gas measurement and how we can provide oil and gas industry solutions and support for you. Please contact Exi Flow at mail@exiflowmeasurement.co.uk.