Flowmeters for petro and LNG custody transfer

Sentinel flowmeter family from GE Sensing optimized for complex and demanding service with liquefied natural gas and petroleum product sales and transfers.
By Peter Welander September 11, 2009
Sentinal family of flowmeters from GE Sensing.

GE Sensing & Inspection Technologies has released its Sentinel LCT and LNG families, designed for liquid petroleum products and liquefied natural gas, respectively. GE says both offer improved accuracy compared to traditional ship and tank level measurement through the use of extensive CFD (computational fluid dynamics) techniques to guarantee high accuracy, even under conditions where flow conditions change constantly.

"With Sentinel LCT and LNG we are adding the highest accuracy ultrasonic liquid flowmeters in the industry to our already robust line of flowmeters," says Ashish Bhandari, general manager of the flow segment at GE Sensing & Inspection Technologies.

The company says that Sentinel LCT has a number of GE proprietary features that make the meters able to read reliably regardless of viscosity changes. Whether measuring gasoline or a heavy crude, there is no need for a proving run every time the product changes. The family uses advanced diagnostics to perform continuous self-checks and sends out a warning if something goes wrong. A built-in flow computer allows for pressure, temperature, and density corrections according to API 11.1.

Sentinel LNG is designed specifically for cryogenic LNG measurements. With an externally certified measurement uncertainty of 0.20 to 0.25%, the meter is an alternative to ship and tank level measurement. GE points out that whereas a level measurement needs multiple level, pressure, and temperature transducers to compensate for density variations, just one Sentinel LNG can measure the total volume during loading and unloading of a ship or tanks. Tanks trapping tables and corrections for a ship that moves due to wave motion are no longer required, allowing for a significant improvement in measurement accuracy.

Both Sentinel LNG and LCT are fully welded and have no moving parts that can wear out and cause the meter to drift. Both are full bore and do not require filters or strainers. Sentinel LNG has specially designed acoustic buffers that allow the acoustic transducers to be mounted outside the cryogenic zone, avoiding temperature shocks and long-term stress cracking.

-Edited by Peter Welander, process industries editor, PWelander@cfemedia.com,
Control Engineering Process Instrumentation & Sensors Monthly
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