The Effect of Flow Pulsations on Coriolis Mass Flow Meters
Abstract
It has been reported that the accuracy of Coriolis mass flow meters can be adversely affected by the presence of pulsations (at particular frequencies) in the flow. A full analysis of the transient performance of a commercial Coriolis meter is only possible using finite element techniques. However, this is a transient, nonlinear problem in which the space and time variables are not (strictly) separable and the finite element techniques for tackling such problems make it desirable to have an analytical solution for a simplified meter, against which the finite element solution can be compared. This paper reports such a solution. The solution will also provide guidance for experiments. Existing analytical solutions for the performance of Coriolis meters in steady flow (a complex eigenvalue problem) are not easily extended to the transient flow case. The paper thus begins with the presentation of an alternative solution for steady flow through a simple, straight tube, Coriolis meter and it is notable that this solution gives a simple analytical expression for the experimentally observed small change in the resonant frequency of the meter, with flow rate, as well as an analytical expression for the meter sensitivity. The analysis is extended to the transient case, using classical, forced vibration, modal decomposition techniques. The solution shows that, unlike the steady flow case where the detector signals contain components at the drive frequency and the second mode frequency (Coriolis frequency), for pulsatile flow the detector signals will in general contain components involving at least four frequencies. It is demonstrated that the meter error depends on the algorithm used to estimate the phase difference from the detector signals. The particular flow pulsation frequencies which could possibly lead to large meter errors are identified.
 Publication:

Journal of Fluids and Structures
 Pub Date:
 November 1998
 DOI:
 10.1006/jfls.1998.0176
 Bibcode:
 1998JFS....12.1025C