Selecting a flowmeter
October 26, 2010

A customer contacted us the other day with these questions about our open-channel flowmeters:
What size pipes does this fit - or is it able to fit everything and you just modify the electronics for the size? Could it be used on corrugated pipe - with less accuracy perhaps?
While we of course responded directly, we wanted to share our responses more generally, in order to help others:
First of all, we need to clarify a few things. Your original inquiry was for a flowmeter to mount over a flume. In that case, we'd be talking about an open-channel flowmeter. The flowmeter is literally suspended over the flume itself in order to measure the water level; no pipes are involved.

Now, if you want to mount the flowmeter onto a pipe instead of mounting it over a flume, then you're talking about one of the closed-pipe flowmeters. These require a few things: First, the pipe needs to run full in order for a closed-pipe flowmeter to work. An open-channel flowmeter can work with zero flow through the flume, but a closed-pipe flowmeter needs to have a full pipe.

Second, the closed-pipe flowmeter needs smooth pipe to work, not corrugated. The closed-pipe flowmeter works by firing off a Doppler ping and measuring how much and how quickly the signals come back; for pretty obvious reasons, that doesn't work with a corrugated pipe.

I hope this clarifies your questions a bit. If you have any others, please let me know and I'll be happy to help.
Any time you have questions about any of the products we sell, please feel free to contact us with your questions.

October 2010
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last revised October 2010