Coriolis Flow Meters

Posted on December 15, 2021

Jeff Mottershead heashot

Coriolis meters offer both a density and a mass flow measurement of process materials. For a flow with two components, e.g., a water/sand slurry, an oil/water emulsion or a bubbly liquid, a measurement of the bulk density allows the operator to calculate the weight percentage of both materials. Knowing the composition and the mass flow reveals the mass flow of both components.

The Coriolis meter is the best single instrument for characterizing two-component flows, but it’s critical to understand the measurement principle and the limits of the applicability of the technology. The Coriolis meter vibrates the tubes that convey the process material. In principle, the density can be calculated from the resonant frequency and the mass. Flow comes from phase differences between the motion near the inlet and the outlet of tubes.

For a single-phase fluid, the calculation is exact and errors from Coriolis meters are impressively low, often as good as 0.1% of reading. In a future post, we’ll dig into the scenarios with two component flows where the Coriolis can give large errors.

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