Tuesday 5 September 2017

Fruit and Flowmeters – Mexican Mangoes Make for an Unusual Measurement

Interesting application proves fruitful for Katronic flowmeters

In the 20 years that Katronic has been involved with clamp-on ultrasonic flowmeters we have seen a huge variety of different uses for our technology. It is therefore refreshing that customers are still finding new and interesting applications that give us the opportunity to test the boundaries of the instruments and take measurements where we not necessarily expecting to succeed. 

Our partner in Mexico, Sigma Sensor recently contacted us about an unusual request that they had received from one of their customers working in the food and beverage sector. They were looking to take measurements on a 68 mm stainless steel pipe containing mango pulp. Our initial reaction was one of scepticism owing to the highly fibrous nature of the fluid but as Sigma have demonstration equipment it was decided that it was worth further exploration. 

Before we got involved the customer was using the frequency of a volumetric pump as a method for inferring the flow rate of the mango as it passed from storage vessels into the production process. This method was not proving reliable however and they were looking for an alternative, more accurate solution. 

Sigma visited the customer and used a semi-portable KATflow 150 flowmeter for an initial installation. Once commissioned the meter achieved excellent results achieving 5579 l/h which was within 0.5 % of the 5600 l/h expected by the customer. It would be unrealistic to assume that this level of performance could be attained on all similar applications but it does show what can sometimes happen with careful sensor mounting, reliable parameters and a bit of good fortune. We see the fact that we were able to measure the flow of mango pulp at all as a reassuring testament to robustness of our measurement and the performance of the flowmeters we produce. 

Please feel free to contact us if you have any troublesome metering problems that you would like us to investigate, or if you have a similarly interesting success story.