Water Flow Measurement Devices and their Uses

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Any type of water flow measurement is crucial when you want to get quality products or results. Depending on the state of matter you are measuring, different types of devices are used. Since fluids usually flow in their state, they require a special kind of measuring device. These devices are known as fluid flow meters. Fluid flow meters are devices used to measure the mass or volume of gases and liquids passing through a pipe or confined in a storage. 

A flow meter is very effective when you want to establish liquids’ flow in different applications or systems. The flow and application capacity will determine the type of flow meter used since flow meters come in numerous types. Let us now explore the different types of flow meters and their use. 

Fluid Flow Meter Types 

Before buying a particular flow meter, it’s always good to inquire about the type of application that suits it. That’s because flow meters come in different types and sizes depending on the pipe size and application. Flow meters are grouped into five categories:

Differential Pressure Flow Meter Types 

When using a differential pressure flow meter, the fluid is forced into an orifice. Here the fluids measurement rate equals the square root of the differential pressure produced. A DP flow meter has two distinctive parts, which include the primary and the secondary elements. The purpose of the primary element, which is made up of the nozzle, pitot tube, orifice plate, or venturi, is to produce a change in kinetic energy. Differential pressure is measured in the secondary element, which also produces the signal. A fifth of the world’s flow meters is made up of differential flow meters. They make ideal flow meters for measuring oil and gas in Industries, paper, and chemical plants. 

Positive Displacement Flow Meter Types 

Also called PD meters, these meter types measure the flow rate by measuring the volume filled with fluid, passing the fluid, and filling up again. By doing so, the amount of fluid transferred is calculated. Unlike other types of water flow measurement meters that measure other parameters, converting the values into flow rate, PD types of flow meters measure the actual fluid flow. The volume of liquid passing through the flow meter is directly proportional to the output. Piston meters, nutating disk meters, roval-gear meters, and rotary vane type meters are examples of positive displacement flow meters. They provide high accuracy levels and are mainly used to transfer hydraulic fluids, gasoline, and crude oil. 

Velocity Flow Meters

This flow meter type uses the measured stream velocity to calculate the volumetric flow rate. When the Reynolds number of fluid goes beyond 10000, these flowmeters lose their sensitivity. Examples of these flowmeters include vortex shading, paddlewheel flow meters, and liquid turbine flow meters. 

Mass Flow Meter Types 

In mass flow meter types, fluid measurement is done from the acceleration of mass. The mass is measured by movement per unit of time. Examples of these types of meters include Coriolis and thermal dispersion meters. Mass flow meters are used in mining, power, pharma, wastewater, and gas industries. 

Open Channel Flow Meter Types 

As the name suggests, flow meters from this category measure water in open channels such as flumes, v-notch, and weirs. These overflows or dam-like structures measure flow rates based on the unique shape or size of the structure. They do this by allowing congested or limited free flow of liquids. These meters are used in measuring flow in irrigation channels, wastewater systems, rivers, and streams. 


Since flow meters come in many different types and sizes, consider the application before opting to buy one. As we have mentioned, the condition of the fluid in terms of temperature, its properties, are among the factors that you need to look into as they will affect the system’s effectiveness and overall water flow measurement. Consulting the manufacturer about the different types of flow meters and their use will help you make the right choice. 

Author’s BIO:

Naman Modi is a Professional Blogger, SEO Expert & Guest blogger at proteusind.comHe is an Award-Winning Freelancer & Web Entrepreneur helping new entrepreneurs launch their first successful online business.

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