A Breakthrough in Remote Monitoring For Coriolis Flow Meters

By Alec O’Keefe, Product Specialist,  KROHNE, Inc.   

Features Coriolis flow ippt meters

Getting technicians into the field to perform a variety of flow meter requirements can be a tedious and time-consuming process. The convenience of being able to see and interact with the device without having to be directly at the meter or in the control room would save critical time that could be dedicated to other tasks.
To address this need, KROHNE launched its Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) option in 2020 for all OPTI-MASS Coriolis flow meters equipped with an MFC 400 converter. In conjunction with the OPTICHECK Flow Mobile app, which is available for iOS and Android, the BLE solution allows for a wide range of meter interactions that field technicians may require to be performed on a smartphone or tablet.
This includes device commissioning, monitoring of basic and in-depth parameters, diagnostic readings, and meter verification. While attaching Bluetooth technology to more simple process instrumentation devices is not new, KROHNE is touting this development as a first for Coriolis flow meters. Many of these meters being used by the oil and gas industry are in remote locations, so the new BLE solution can have a significant and immediate impact.
Simplicity Is Key
From their vehicles, technicians open the app, which detects every meter within range and works as far as 60 feet away with clear line-of-sight. Meters are identifiable by tag and serial number. From there, the technician can connect to the meter and view everything the device sees, more than 20 variables, and can trend as many as four at once. Along with the most useful measured values — such as raw mass flow, density, or temperature — more in-depth items that may be of concern are available, including drive level, tube frequency, and the presence of two-phase flow.
Real-time diagnostics, where the meter is continuously performing self-checks to ensure it is operating properly, can also be quickly accessed.
BLE also turns device commissioning, typically an inconvenience, into a relatively simple and quick task. Once a meter is installed, technicians may need to perform a zero-flow or density calibration; make minor adjustments, such as setting units or output ranges; or even change or remove the Bluetooth password.

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Although KROHNE Coriolis flow meters are calibrated at the factory in a controlled environment, the extra layer of calibration in situ can substantially benefit the instrument’s performance.
Additionally, the app allows technicians to remotely perform a verification on meters, which is important as regulations on the industry have been increasing in recent years. This capability makes it easier to provide the traceability needed to satisfy those requirements.
The business case for investing in the BLE solution, especially for oil and gas companies with broad geo-graphical fields, is strong. With technicians constantly under stress to put out fires (figuratively) in the field, the leap in efficiency would free them up to address other pressing issues.
Use Case
A KROHNE oil and gas industry customer with many Coriolis flow meters in the field has already used BLE to accelerate tasks so technicians can be free to tackle other issues. The customer, who tends to have clusters of six to eight devices within a very tight footprint, now has personnel that pull up to a well pad and connect to every meter without leaving their truck. Not only does this save time, but it also pro-vides cover from the elements, which is especially beneficial for those who work in the blistering heat of Texas or freezing conditions in Canada, for example.
Because BLE is so new, many oil and gas professionals are not aware it is available. The solution can either be ordered as an option with new devices or retrofitted, depending on the hardware revision of the converter. OPTIMASS with BLE are currently the only safety integrity level (SIL) certified mass flow meters on the market allowing Bluetooth communication.
Visit our website to get more information: https://krohne.com/safety/#optimass
Copyright KROHNE, Inc. 2021 KROHNE, Inc. 55 Cherry Hill Drive, Beverly MA 01915 (USA) http://us.krohne.com 1-800 356-9464 info@krohne.com – 2 -/2

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