Optimise your liquid batching systems

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Flow metering solutions specialist, Titan Enterprises, explores the key factors to consider when selecting a flow measuring device to meet batching control needs, ensuring a smooth and efficient batching process.

While a recent white paper (bit.ly/TitanHSB) from Titan Enterprises reviews the application of ultrasonic flowmeters in high-speed batching, here we focus on the broader aspects of batching systems, highlighting five essential considerations to help users make an informed choice for a flowmeter that suits a batching process.

Batch filling systems are commonly associated with the food and beverage industry, dispensing product directly into a glass, bottle or other type of vessel. Batching systems are also integral to the pharmaceutical and medical, chemical and oil industries. Applications such as additive injection or chemical dosing necessitate the precise control of liquid dispensing, making flowmeters indispensable in such processes.

Repeatability is essential for a productive batching process: Multiple uncertainties can change the amount of liquid being dispensed, causing a negative effect on the repeatability of the system. Controlling as many process variables as possible will help to ensure the accuracy and repeatability of flow measurement. Flowmeters, such as Titans’ mini turbines, boast repeatability of 0.1% or better when operating under consistent conditions.

The physical properties of the batch-filled liquid will dictate equipment requirements: The choice of flowmeter may be limited by the properties of the liquid, such as viscosity, volatility, corrosiveness, flammability, or particle contamination.

For high-viscosity liquids like syrups or mayonnaise, a precision-engineered oval gear flowmeter is ideal, the oval gears generating a greater driving pressure across the gears. Almost immune from the effects of liquid viscosity, the measurement accuracy of Titan’s Oval Gear flowmeters improves with increasing liquid viscosity. Titan’s specifically designed gears are provided for high viscosity liquids above 1000cSt to facilitate the additional flow of the liquid.

Whereas Titan’s NSF-Approved 800-series or Beverage turbine flowmeters accurately monitor and check the flow of lower viscosity beverages – beer, spirits, wine, coffee, and soft drinks – being dispensed through batch delivery systems such as bar taps, bottling processes and within the distillery process.

Maintaining constant process conditions: Changes in flow rate, temperature and pressure may cause a flowmeter to function in an unpredictable dynamic way. Although maintaining stable operating parameters is optimal, this may not always be feasible. Fluctuating flow rates, for example, can be compensated for by using a higher specification measuring device, like Titans’ Atrato ultrasonic flowmeter, that will help to mitigate negative performance effects.

Constant liquid flow or pulsations? Maintaining a steady overall flow and avoiding any pulsations within the batching system will prevent aliasing and incorrect flow readings over the batch operating cycle. If pulsation is inherent, inline pulse dampening is required and choosing the right flowmeter becomes critical in reducing the undesirable effects of pulsations.

Limiting system inertia: System inertia is the delay in response within the system from stopping/starting the liquid dispense following the control signal, which affects the accuracy of dispensed volume. Simple adjustments to the batch system design, such as control valve specification, reducing pipe lengths, and the positioning of the flowmeter, can help to offset the effects of inertia.

Selecting the most suitable flowmeter for a batch system can be a complex task. Titan Enterprises is dedicated to assisting you in finding the most appropriate flowmeter solution for your process and plant.

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