What Is Flow Measurement 4.0?

Louise Davis

Whether in the pharmaceutical industry, water treatment or in food production, if conductive media such as cooling water are added to a process, magnetic-inductive flow meters are usually installed for monitoring purposes.

This is particularly true in the context of dosing, where the measuring flow meters must possess precise response times and should also be easy to configure, otherwise incorrect dosing or insufficient repeatability will occur.

Although there are already many accurate devices for small and medium flow rates in the market place, they are often limited in functionality or lack flexibility at the installation stage.

The Challenges of Limited Functionality

Kobold Messring provides these features as standard with its flow meter duo, MIM and MIS. Due to the extensive options for on-site programming, they are suitable for cross-industry use, particularly for dosing applications. Configurable optical buttons can be used to display parameters such as flow rates or temperatures.

Changing Colour System

A changing colour system in the display also warns of limit violations. Since the MIM model is the first variant produced in a remote version, in which the display and electronics are not integrated in the sensor unit, the flow meter can also be used for media temperatures up to 140°C.

For reference, magnetic-inductive flow meters work without moving parts, unlike rotating vane flow meters, and for this reason they hardly show any signs of wear and tear. As a result, these devices have proven to be effective in measuring the flow of conductive media – such as water, pulps and pastes, juices or emulsions. However, this wide range of applications also leads to very different installation situations, since the measuring instruments are used in various industries and processes.

Pipe Size & Orientation

The nominal size of the connected pipes, possible orientation during installation and integration into certain process chains, such as dosing of media during coating of tablets or during coolant supply, influence the choice of a suitable flow meter.

This is especially true in the context of dosing processes where the measuring instruments must offer the possibility of programming intermediate values to document the quantities, and to avoid inaccurate dosing. In addition, the display should be multi-line and clearly visible so that the plant engineers are warned in good time before exceeding a limit value. Often however, flowmeters only meet some of these requirements, and often at the expense of usability.

MIM and MIS Universal Flow Meters

For this reason, Kobold developed the products MIM and MIS; universal flow meters incorporating IO-Link to meet Industry 4.0 requirements (if or when required), which are suitable for almost any measuring situation and guarantee high programming freedom in addition to good response times of sometimes less than 100 milliseconds. The many functions such as temperature measurement or dosing are performed accurately, which can be set in just a few steps in the program menu with the hot key buttons. And the robust and flexible design enables simple and clear installation, even in tight-fitting pipe systems.

Installation Benefits Of MIM and MIS Flow Meters

The two models are made entirely of durable materials, the MIM in stainless steel. In addition to the temperature measurement function, which only MIM has, the devices differ mainly in relation to the pipe sizes at which they are used.

While MIS is suitable for nominal sizes DN 80 and DN 100 or 3in and 4in, MIM can be used for very small nominal pipe sizes and covers an even larger measuring range, depending on the nominal size – from 30ml /min upwards.

The flow meters have two individually configurable outputs that can act as a pulse, alarm or analogue output, depending on the setting. This makes them easier to integrate into different processes or auxiliary circuits. The colour multi-display can also rotate digitally in 90° increments, so that when changing location, no other model is required, and the display is independent of the position of the connections.

Improvements In Precise Dosing Quantities

The response time has now been improved to facilitate more precise dosing quantities. In addition, different subsets can be programmed via the menu to avoid needing to navigate awkwardly with each new setting through the menu. Precisely measured quantities and a very good response time are indispensable, especially for sensitive processes such as tablet coating.

To ensure that this possibility is also available for hot media and in extremely temperature-controlled environments such as cooling water circuits, Kobold is offering for the first time a device in remote version. Unlike conventional devices, the media-contacting unit only contains the sensor.

The entire electronics, the control and display, are housed separately and connected via a cable at a safe distance to the sensor unit on the pipe. As a result, even temperatures up to 140° C are not a problem and the flow meter can work trouble-free because the electronics remain protected.


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