What Are Montana Flumes?

One of the most popular styles of flume you can get for measuring flow rate is a Parshall flume. While these flumes have a lot to offer and have been popular for decades, there’s a modified version that may better fit your unique needs. This modified version is known as the Montana flume, and it has much to offer in its own right. What are Montana flumes? Find out all the details, and discover whether one would fit your flow.

Montana Flume Design

A Montana flume is essentially a Parshall flume in which the throat and discharge sections are absent. Only the tapering-width approach section remains, and that is all you need for successful application and measurement. Keep in mind that a Montana flume is not a Parshall flume with the throat remaining. That’s known as a short-section Parshall, while the Montana is known as the short Parshall. It’s a small yet meaningful distinction.

Montana flumes are appropriate for a wide array of applications and are likely to be more relevant than you might have thought. Sanitary flows and industrial discharges are common applications, but you can also use them in stream gauging and for studying drainage and irrigation. If you do decide to use one for a sanitary flow, make sure that the throat width is at least 3 inches. Anything less will lead to a clog.

Montana Flume Advantages

When you opt for a Montana flume, you can expect quite a few advantages. First, these flumes use the same discharge equations and flow tables as Parshall flumes do, and Parshall flumes are likely the most well-researched flumes in existence. Unlike Parshall flumes, however, Montana flumes have a shorter lay length and a flat bottom, which makes installation easier.

Additionally, the Montana flume design is simple, making manufacturing easy. With a less intense fabrication process and easy installation, the overall cost is reduced as well. Plus, Montana flumes are compatible with standard Parshall inlet end adapters, so you may not have to get any special equipment to make one properly fit your flow channel.

Montana Flume Disadvantages

While Montana flumes have plenty to offer, there are several disadvantages you should be aware of. The primary drawback is that it requires free-spilling discharge in order to function properly. That means submergence must be avoided entirely to make the Montana flume useful at all. Additionally, flow cannot be collected at the end, so the flow channel must meet certain conditions before application.

Montana flumes are simply not as well known as their larger counterparts, Parshall flumes. This may make getting your hands on one a bit more difficult if you don’t know where to look. There has also been less research done on the Montana flume, so you may find it more difficult to adjust to changing situations and odd scenarios to maintain accurate measurements.

Montana Flumes at Tracom

Montana flumes are just one of the many flume fabrications you can get from Tracom. We offer several sizes with numerous customization options along with accessories and add-ons. Contact us today to get a Montana flume that fits your unique flow-measurement needs.