• Reliable SIL-2 rated flow switch improves pump protection for demanding applications in the oil/gas, petrochemical and wastewater sectors

Measurement and Testing

Reliable SIL-2 rated flow switch improves pump protection for demanding applications in the oil/gas, petrochemical and wastewater sectors

Nov 02 2023

Pump efficiency and reliability in industries such as chemical, electric power generation, food/beverage, oil/gas, petrochemicals, and water/wastewater treatment plants is crucial. The operation and maintenance of pumps is expensive, so it is imperative to address issues such as dry running conditions, cavitation, and other operational challenges. Fluid Components International (FCI) offer a reliable solution with their FLT93 Series Flow Switch, designed to provide early warnings and safeguard pumps and avoid costly repairs or replacement. The FLT93 Series Flow Switch was developed to monitor flow media, including liquids, gases, and slurries, with a focus on detecting dry running conditions in pumps. Dry running can result from variable demand, leaks, clogs, or other factors that endanger a pump's seals and bearings. The SIL-2-rated instrument was developed specifically for heavy-duty industrial environments, with a comprehensive set of safety certifications to verify its reliability and performance. The FLT93 Flow Switch is engineered without moving parts and provides a dependable solution for pump protection.

The FLT93  includes a dual alarm feature. The first alarm (Alarm 1) detects low flow conditions, alerting users or control systems when flow rates drop to a range of 0.01 feet to 3 feet per second – or 0.003 meters to 0.9 meters per second. This low-flow alarm serves as a pre-warning signal, enabling operators to make informed decisions about whether to continue pump operation or initiate a shutdown. Alarm 2 is an emergency signal and is activated when the pump's feed line runs dry. In these circumstances, the pump's bearings may experience a fast temperature rise caused by the absence of the heat transfer medium (liquid). Using a flow switch in this situation prevents irreversible damage to the pump's bearings, minimising the need for extensive repairs or overhauls.

This versatile instrument can perform both flow and temperature measurements and/or level sensing. Standard features include dual 6A relay outputs that can be assigned to flow, level, or temperature applications; the FLT93 is also adaptable to both insertion and in-line installation methods in pipes or tubes.

To withstand the conditions in demanding processes, the FLT93 Flow Switch is hydrostatically proof pressure tested up to 3500 psig (240 bar(g)) at 70°F (21°C). With temperature de-rating, the recommended maximum operating service limit is 2350 psig (162 bar(g)) at 500°F (260°C), although higher ratings are available through specialised construction and test certifications. The instrument holds a plethora of agency approvals, including FM, FMc, ATEX, IECEx, UKCA, CSA, CRN, and CE.

FCI's FLT93 switches are dependable and versatile; they are ideal for applications in many demanding, hazardous industries, with or without SIL2 certification. FCI are the only manufacturer to provide integrated temperature compensation to ensure precise set point accuracy across a wide range of process temperatures, varying up to ±100°F.  It can be configured onsite, thus enhancing flexibility, accuracy, and stability for a wide range of process sensing and switching requirements.

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