• Thermal mass flow meters simplify hydrogen measurement applications

Flow Level Pressure

Thermal mass flow meters simplify hydrogen measurement applications

Jun 09 2022

The global demand for hydrogen (H2) gas is on the rise as a renewable energy resource, along with its other applications within a variety of industries. Therefore, the need for precise, repeatable, and dependable flow meters that can operate in harsh industrial locations has also risen. Fluid Components International’s (FCI) ST Series of thermal flow meters are precision H2 calibrated flow meters used in all pipe diameters, almost any installation conditions and with no need for routine maintenance.

Thermal mass flow meters operate through the principles of heat transfer; hydrogen, with its high heat transfer rate, requires a flow meter that is calibrated in actual hydrogen – rather than an inefficient meter working with theoretical gas equivalency equations. The ST Series meters are calibrated under the end user’s installation conditions, in actual hydrogen, which provides FCI’s customers with a far greater rate of precision and repeatability. These devices carry out direct mass flow measurements and are essentially multivariable offering both flow and temperature outputs.  

These devices have no moving parts, so breakages, wear and maintenance are negligible, and this versatile instrument offers a wide variety of process connections to cover every installation category (such as NPT male/female threaded connections, compression fittings, flanges, ball valves etc.).  

The ST family ranges from small and compact flow meters with a standard 4-20mA analogue output to enhanced models with multiple 4-20mA outputs, digital bus communications ( such as HART, Modbus, Foundation Fieldbus, and  Profibus), in-situ calibration, self-monitoring, integrated data logging capability, among other features.  FCI ST Series hydrogen flow meters are direct mass flow measuring, they also have the requisite international approvals for deployment in Div.1/Zone 1 environments, and provide enhanced ruggedness and long-life thanks to their NEMA 4X/IP 67 rated 316 stainless steel or low-copper content aluminum enclosures.

The ST Series are versatile instruments with standard turndowns of 100:1 and a flow range of 0.25 to 1000 SFPS - 0.07 NMPS to 305 NMPS.  Theses flowmeters’ transmitter/electronics can be mounted integrally with the flow body or they can be remotely mounted as far as 1000 feet, or 305 metres away and are available as either DC or AC powered models.  The readout and display options include basic flow rate and totaliser to a top-of-the-range multivariable digital/graphic backlit LCD with FCI’s unique, through-the-glass activated 4-button array.

In applications where there are limited straight-runs and/or for working in transitional flow ranges that can thwart accuracy and repeatability, these instruments are optionally available with and calibration-matched to Vortab® Flow Conditioners to facilitate unhindered, installed performance.


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