Applied Engineering

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Effects of Upstream Flow Disturbances on Elbow Meter Performance

Received: 19 February 2023    Accepted: 13 March 2023    Published: 24 March 2023
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Abstract

In order to fill gaps in research into the use of elbow flow meters and to reconcile both a lack of published standards and differing recommendations on the necessary minimum lengths of straight pipe that should be installed upstream of an elbow flow meter to ensure sufficiently accurate flow measurement, physical data were collected on 50 mm nominal (52.5 mm or 2.067 inch actual), 150 mm nominal (154.05 mm or 6.065 inch actual), and 305 mm nominal (304.8 mm or 12.00 inch actual) long-radius elbow meters to determine discharge coefficients in a straight-line pipeline configuration. The 150 mm (6-inch) long-radius elbow meter was further tested in order to determine the effects of different upstream disturbances on the accuracy of its metering performance. Three different upstream disturbances were tested at upstream distances of 25, 10, and 5 diameter-lengths, including: a single elbow in-plane “S” orientation, a single elbow in-plane “U” orientation, and a double elbows out-of-plane orientation. Discharge coefficients were calculated for each configuration at the three variable upstream distances between the upstream flow disturbance and the meter and compared to the straight-line calibration values to identify the percent difference shifts in the average discharge coefficients. Most importantly, findings from the present study conclude that the discharge coefficients for all elbow meter installations stabilize for pipe Reynolds numbers greater than 300,000. Additionally, even at upstream distances of 25 pipe diameter lengths (3.81 m or 12.5 feet) each of the three upstream flow disturbances continued to exhibit effects on the calculated discharge coefficients for the elbow meter; the observed difference in the average discharge coefficient for the two single elbow in-plane configurations “S” and “U” were within 1.00% of the straight-line values. Finally, the double elbows out-of-plane discharge coefficient values remained constant, regardless of the three tested distances between 5 and 25 diameter lengths between the elbow meter and the upstream flow disturbance, showing a more predictable shift in discharge coefficient than the two single elbow in-plane configurations.

DOI 10.11648/j.ae.20230701.12
Published in Applied Engineering (Volume 7, Issue 1, June 2023)
Page(s) 11-18
Creative Commons

This is an Open Access article, distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, provided the original work is properly cited.

Copyright

Copyright © The Author(s), 2024. Published by Science Publishing Group

Keywords

Differential Pressure Flow Meter, Discharge Coefficient, Elbow Meter, Flow Measurement, Laboratory Studies

References
[1] Burke, L. and Hannah, C. (2010). “Improve Accuracy with Proper Water Meter Installation”. Opflow, 36 (9), 18–21. http://www.jstor.org/stable/opflow.36.9.18
[2] Stauffer, Taylor B., Johnson, Michael C., Sharp, Zachary B., and Barfuss, Steven L. (2019). “Multiple Tap Sets to Improve Venturi Flowmeters Performance Characteristics with Disturbed Flow”. AWWA Water Science, 1 (e1134). https://doi.org/10.1002/aws2.1134
[3] Sharp, Zachary B., Johnson, Michael C., Barfuss, Steven L. (2015). “Effects of Abrupt Pipe Diameter Changes on Venturi Flowmeters”. Journal – American Water Works Association, 108 (8), E433-E441. https://doi.org/10.5942/jawwa.2016.108.0101
[4] Jacobs, G. S. and Sooy, F. A. (1911). “New Method of Water Measurement by Use of Elbows in Pipe Line”, Journal of Electricity, Power and Gas, 27 (4): 72-78.
[5] Murdock, J. W., Foltz, C. J., and Gregory, C. (1964). “Performance Characteristics of Elbow Flowmeters. Journal of Basic Engineering”, 86 (3): 498-503. https://asmedigitalcollection.asme.org/fluidsengineering/article-abstract/86/3/498/398646/Performance-Characteristics-of-Elbow-Flowmeters?redirectedFrom=fulltext
[6] Spink, L. K. (1958). Principles and Practice of Flow Meter Engineering 8th Edition. The Foxboro Company: Foxboro, MA.
[7] Upp, E. L., and LaNasa, Paul J. (2002). Fluid Flow Measurement: A Practical Guide to Accurate Flow Measurement 2nd Edition. Elsevier: London, United Kingdom.
[8] Howe, W. H., Liptak, B. G., and Gibson, I. H. (2003). Instrument Engineers’ Handbook, Volume 1: Process Measurement and Analysis 4th Edition. CRC Press: Boca Raton, FL.
[9] Miller, R. W. (1996). Flow Measurement Engineering Handbook 3rd Edition. McGraw-Hill: New York, NY.
[10] Rawat, A., Singh, S. N., and Seshadri, V. (2020). “CFD Analysis of the Performance of Elbow-Meter with High Concentration Coal Ash Slurries”. Flow Measurement and Instrumentation, 72, 101724 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1016/j.flowmeasinst.2020.101724.
[11] Eguchi, Y., Murakami, T., Tanaka, M., and Yamano, H. (2011). “A Finite Element LES for High-Re Flow in a Short-Elbow Pipe with Undisturbed Inlet Velocity”. Nuclear Engineering and Design 241 (11) 4368-4378, Elsevier: London, United Kingdon.
[12] Weissenbrunner, A., Fiebach, A., Schmelter, S., Bar, M., Thamsen, P. U., and Lederer, T. (2016). “Simulation-Based Determination of Systematic Errors of Flow Meters due to Uncertain Inflow Conditions”. Flow Measurement and Instrumentation 52, 25-39. Elsevier: London, United Kingdom.
[13] Mazumder, Q. H. (2012).” CFD Analysis of the Effects of Elbow Radius on Pressure Drop in Multiphase Flow”. Modelling and Simulation in Engineering 1687-5591, Hindawi Publishing Corp.: London, United Kingdom.
[14] Finnemore E. J., and Franzini, J. B. (2006). Fluid Mechanics with Engineering Applications 10th Edition. McGraw-Hill: New York, NY.
[15] The American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME). (2006). Test Uncertainty: An American National Standard. New York, NY: ASME PTC 19.1-2006.
Cite This Article
  • APA Style

    Riley Manwaring, Michael Johnson, Zachary Sharp, Steven Barfuss. (2023). Effects of Upstream Flow Disturbances on Elbow Meter Performance. Applied Engineering, 7(1), 11-18. https://doi.org/10.11648/j.ae.20230701.12

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    ACS Style

    Riley Manwaring; Michael Johnson; Zachary Sharp; Steven Barfuss. Effects of Upstream Flow Disturbances on Elbow Meter Performance. Appl. Eng. 2023, 7(1), 11-18. doi: 10.11648/j.ae.20230701.12

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    AMA Style

    Riley Manwaring, Michael Johnson, Zachary Sharp, Steven Barfuss. Effects of Upstream Flow Disturbances on Elbow Meter Performance. Appl Eng. 2023;7(1):11-18. doi: 10.11648/j.ae.20230701.12

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  • @article{10.11648/j.ae.20230701.12,
      author = {Riley Manwaring and Michael Johnson and Zachary Sharp and Steven Barfuss},
      title = {Effects of Upstream Flow Disturbances on Elbow Meter Performance},
      journal = {Applied Engineering},
      volume = {7},
      number = {1},
      pages = {11-18},
      doi = {10.11648/j.ae.20230701.12},
      url = {https://doi.org/10.11648/j.ae.20230701.12},
      eprint = {https://article.sciencepublishinggroup.com/pdf/10.11648.j.ae.20230701.12},
      abstract = {In order to fill gaps in research into the use of elbow flow meters and to reconcile both a lack of published standards and differing recommendations on the necessary minimum lengths of straight pipe that should be installed upstream of an elbow flow meter to ensure sufficiently accurate flow measurement, physical data were collected on 50 mm nominal (52.5 mm or 2.067 inch actual), 150 mm nominal (154.05 mm or 6.065 inch actual), and 305 mm nominal (304.8 mm or 12.00 inch actual) long-radius elbow meters to determine discharge coefficients in a straight-line pipeline configuration. The 150 mm (6-inch) long-radius elbow meter was further tested in order to determine the effects of different upstream disturbances on the accuracy of its metering performance. Three different upstream disturbances were tested at upstream distances of 25, 10, and 5 diameter-lengths, including: a single elbow in-plane “S” orientation, a single elbow in-plane “U” orientation, and a double elbows out-of-plane orientation. Discharge coefficients were calculated for each configuration at the three variable upstream distances between the upstream flow disturbance and the meter and compared to the straight-line calibration values to identify the percent difference shifts in the average discharge coefficients. Most importantly, findings from the present study conclude that the discharge coefficients for all elbow meter installations stabilize for pipe Reynolds numbers greater than 300,000. Additionally, even at upstream distances of 25 pipe diameter lengths (3.81 m or 12.5 feet) each of the three upstream flow disturbances continued to exhibit effects on the calculated discharge coefficients for the elbow meter; the observed difference in the average discharge coefficient for the two single elbow in-plane configurations “S” and “U” were within 1.00% of the straight-line values. Finally, the double elbows out-of-plane discharge coefficient values remained constant, regardless of the three tested distances between 5 and 25 diameter lengths between the elbow meter and the upstream flow disturbance, showing a more predictable shift in discharge coefficient than the two single elbow in-plane configurations.},
     year = {2023}
    }
    

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  • TY  - JOUR
    T1  - Effects of Upstream Flow Disturbances on Elbow Meter Performance
    AU  - Riley Manwaring
    AU  - Michael Johnson
    AU  - Zachary Sharp
    AU  - Steven Barfuss
    Y1  - 2023/03/24
    PY  - 2023
    N1  - https://doi.org/10.11648/j.ae.20230701.12
    DO  - 10.11648/j.ae.20230701.12
    T2  - Applied Engineering
    JF  - Applied Engineering
    JO  - Applied Engineering
    SP  - 11
    EP  - 18
    PB  - Science Publishing Group
    SN  - 2994-7456
    UR  - https://doi.org/10.11648/j.ae.20230701.12
    AB  - In order to fill gaps in research into the use of elbow flow meters and to reconcile both a lack of published standards and differing recommendations on the necessary minimum lengths of straight pipe that should be installed upstream of an elbow flow meter to ensure sufficiently accurate flow measurement, physical data were collected on 50 mm nominal (52.5 mm or 2.067 inch actual), 150 mm nominal (154.05 mm or 6.065 inch actual), and 305 mm nominal (304.8 mm or 12.00 inch actual) long-radius elbow meters to determine discharge coefficients in a straight-line pipeline configuration. The 150 mm (6-inch) long-radius elbow meter was further tested in order to determine the effects of different upstream disturbances on the accuracy of its metering performance. Three different upstream disturbances were tested at upstream distances of 25, 10, and 5 diameter-lengths, including: a single elbow in-plane “S” orientation, a single elbow in-plane “U” orientation, and a double elbows out-of-plane orientation. Discharge coefficients were calculated for each configuration at the three variable upstream distances between the upstream flow disturbance and the meter and compared to the straight-line calibration values to identify the percent difference shifts in the average discharge coefficients. Most importantly, findings from the present study conclude that the discharge coefficients for all elbow meter installations stabilize for pipe Reynolds numbers greater than 300,000. Additionally, even at upstream distances of 25 pipe diameter lengths (3.81 m or 12.5 feet) each of the three upstream flow disturbances continued to exhibit effects on the calculated discharge coefficients for the elbow meter; the observed difference in the average discharge coefficient for the two single elbow in-plane configurations “S” and “U” were within 1.00% of the straight-line values. Finally, the double elbows out-of-plane discharge coefficient values remained constant, regardless of the three tested distances between 5 and 25 diameter lengths between the elbow meter and the upstream flow disturbance, showing a more predictable shift in discharge coefficient than the two single elbow in-plane configurations.
    VL  - 7
    IS  - 1
    ER  - 

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Author Information
  • Gannet Fleming, Inc., Phoenix, USA

  • Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Utah State University, Logan, USA

  • Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Utah State University, Logan, USA

  • Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Utah State University, Logan, USA

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