Greenhouse gas flow meter for process, plant flue gas applications

A mass flow meter designed to monitor greenhouse gases can help users in chemical, food processing, petroleum refining, pharmaceutical, electric power generation, and other plants be in compliance with the EPA emission requirements.


Process and plant engineers who are concerned about the U.S. EPA’s greenhouse gas  monitoring requirements will find the ST51 GHG mass flow meter from Fluid Components International (FCI) provides just what they need. The ST51 features a no-moving-parts design that’s non-clogging, and it operates over a wide flow range with low-flow sensitivity. It’s packaged in an explosion-proof transmitter, and the calibration is matched to the user’s actual gas composition and installation conditions. Flue gases, the mixed-composition hydrocarbon greenhouse gases that are the by-product of an industrial plant combustion process, can include nitrogen, carbon dioxide, oxygen, water vapor, sulfur oxides, nitrogen oxide, carbon monoxide, particulates, ozone, and methane. 

The ST5 features a thermal mass, insertion-style flow element with flow accuracy to ±1% of reading over a broad flow range from 0.3 to 400 SFPS (0.08 to 122 MPS), and repeatability of ±0.5% of reading. The flow element is available for use in line sizes from 2 to 24 in. (51 to 610 mm). It operates over a wide turndown range of 100:1 and at temperatures from 0 to 250 °F (-18 to 121 °C). It withstands pressures up to 500 psig (34 bar).

The unit's robust thermal mass flow sensing element has no moving parts and no orifices to clog or foul, allowing it to attain virtually maintenance-free service in wet, dirty biogas applications. The flow element is constructed with a 316L stainless steel body and Hastelloy C-22 thermowell sensors to resist corrosion. It includes built-in temperature compensation circuitry for accurate, repeatable measurement as temperatures rise and fall seasonally.

Dual 4-20 mA analog outputs are user-assignable to flow rate and/or temperature, and there is a 0-1 kHz pulse output for totalized flow. The transmitter’s digital communications include an RS-232C port, and with units that have the digital display option there is a wireless IR link for PDA use. An optional integral digital display features a two-line, 16-character LCD screen that can be rotated in 90° increments for optimum viewing. The LCD screen’s top line is assigned to flow rate, and the bottom line is user-assignable for temperature readings or totalized flow.

Fluid Components International

- Also from Control Engineering:

Gas flowmeter for chlorine water disinfection systems

Mass flowmeter optimized for biofuels applications

Video Demonstration: Thermal Mass Flow Sensing Technnology

- Edited by Renee R. Bassett for Control Engineering,

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