Errors in Pipe to Flume Transitions

Successfully operating a water management operation is extremely complicated. In addition to picking a flow measurement tool that you know will give you accurate readings, you need to be sure that your flow device can be incorporated into your existing system. This can be extremely complicated when you need to measure flows in non-full pipes.

While flumes can be transitioned into pipes, some of the most popular flumes were not designed for this purpose, making it very easy to experience flow measurement errors. Here are a few pipe to flume transition errors you need to avoid, and tips for installing the highest quality flow measurement tools possible.

Installing Too Low

If you want the flume in your system to work correctly, the flow approaching your flume needs to be calm and free from turbulence. Any upstream disturbance can reduce the accuracy of your readings and impact the success of your operation. To make sure your flow is at the proper rate, it’s imperative that your flume is installed level with the entry pipe.

When the flume is installed below the pipe, it has the potential to accelerate the flow in your system, limiting the effectiveness of your flume. During installation, make sure that you’re installing your flume so that it evenly transitions into your pipe.

Pipe Slope

While flow needs to be calm as it approaches your flume, it must be subcritical as it enters the flume. If your flow is allowed to reach supercritical rates before entering your flume, your operators will get wildly inaccurate readings. One of the main causes for accelerated flow entering a flume is a steep pipe slope.

If the slope of the pipe transitioning into your flume is too steep, it will accelerate your flow to a surprising degree. Commonly, steep pipes result in supercritical flow and less accuracy. Be sure that your pipe is as level as possible to prevent supercritical flow from entering your flume.

Upstream Conditions

For your operators to get the accurate readings that you need, your flow must have a normal velocity profile as it approaches your flume. This means that you need to maintain proper upstream conditions. Unfortunately, upstream conditions can be impacted by a wide variety of factors, including how you transition your pipe into your flume.

For instance, if the pipe is installed too close to the converging section of your flume, it will be nearly impossible for your flow to distribute evenly or achieve the correct velocity profile. Install your pipe the correct distance from the flume’s converging section to avoid this serious problem.

Get Help with Pipe to Flume Transition

As you can see, transitioning a pipe into a flume is a very delicate operation. If you make one of many common errors during installation, you won’t be able to get the accurate readings that you need. The best way to make sure your pipe to flume transition is established correctly is to have the best tools for the job, and your top resource for high-quality water management products is Tracom, FRP.

Tracom offers a broad catalogue of fiberglass flow management tools, and we can help you find the products you need for success. Contact Tracom today to learn more about our water management tools.

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