WRc EVALUATE NEXT GENERATION OF LARGE FLOWMETERS
Traditionally, the water industry uses turbine type
meters for large commercial revenue and district metering. This
technology has remained largely unchanged for many years and whilst
these meters have provided an invaluable service to the industry,
they are not without problems, such as wear, leading to
under-registration of flow, impacting on revenue and leakage
estimates, particularly at low flows.
Battery powered electromagnetic and ultrasonic meters are now
challenging the traditional meters by claiming new benefits and
better performance. The mechanical meter manufacturers though are
fighting back with new models that also claim improved performance
levels and incorporate the benefits of electronics such as
So what is the water company looking to invest in upgrading or
replacing its large revenue and district meter stock to make of
these claims? These are important applications. Commercial revenue
meters account for a significant proportion of water company income
and differences in performance can be worth several thousands of
pounds over the lifetime of the meter. Leakage remains a hot issue
with much of the UK in a drought; reliable and accurate flow data
is critical to leakage estimation and targeting repair activities.
Informed meter selection is, therefore, essential to company
WRc has recently started a collaborative project with four UK
water companies to evaluate the 'next generation' of large water
flowmeters - both mechanical and electronic types. This project
will test the claims being made for these new meters through an
extended, rigorous and independent test programme.
The results will be invaluable to water utilities planning
future investment in large meters. It will identify the levels of
performance likely to be seen in service, how to get the best
performance from these meters and the implications of moving from
the present meters to the next generation.