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Second Meeting for FRWG held on June 21, 2017

We held our second meeting of the Flow Recalibration Working Group (FRWG) at the CEESI North American Custody Transfer Conference in San Antonio, Texas that was held from June 19-21, 2017. We met on June 21 at the conclusion of the conference. 

The main focus of this meeting was the end-user survey that we decided to conduct at our initial meeting.  Flow Research has created a draft of the end-user survey that has been circulated to working group members At this meeting we agreed to finalize the end-user survey, and then begin to administer it.  Members agreed to provide the names of five end-users who could potentially complete the survey.

The subject of providing funding for our efforts was discussed, but we agreed to wait until completing the end-user survey to pursue this idea.

We aim to get the end-user survey underway at the beginning of 2018.  Flow Research will be circulating the draft survey towards the end of 2017 so that we can begin the survey early in 2018.  Our hope is to have some solid results by the time of our third meeting at the CEESI Custody Transfer conference in June 2018.

In the meantime, we have had some new members join our working group.  The list of FRWG members appears below.  I would especially like to welcome Pankaj Gupta (Gail), Tom Ballard (Circor), Tom Stonehouse (Baker Hughes-GE), and Aguko Willis (Kenya Bureau of Standards). Our Working Group has a truly international reach.

Flow Recalibration Working Group (FRWG)

The purpose of this group is to arrive at a group of criteria that end-users can employ to determine if their flowmeters need to be recalibrated.  This does not necessarily equate to a specific time interval.  Instead, the goal is to have some tests, programs, or criteria that can be run to determine when a flowmeter needs to be recalibrated. 

The idea for this group came out of a series of in-person interviews I did with end-users of flowmeters in the Middle East in 2009.  I interviewed 15 companies from Oman Saudi Arabia , Qatar , and the UAE about their use of flowmeters.  Many of them expressed frustration that there was no generally agreed upon interval when their ultrasonic flowmeters need to be recalibrated.  There was also the fact that at that time there was no recalibration facility in the Middle East .  These people asked me if I could help them arrive at a standard.  I said that I would do what I could.

Since that time I have spoken to the AGA, which seems to have no interest in taking on this subject.  One positive development is that Emerson Process has built a flow calibration facility in Abu Dhabi , but it is currently limited to four inch liquid recalibrations.  Some countries have instituted their own rules about calibration frequency, but these periods vary and seem to differ on a country by country basis.

The series of six studies that Flow Research did in 2012 on gas flow measurement grew out of the Middle East interviews. We are now researching a new edition of this series. Currently, Flow Research is conducting a worldwide study of the calibration facilities for liquid and gas recalibration.  So far we have identified 125 such facilities.  We have completed a questionnaire that we plan to send to them.  The study will include a description of the capabilities of the various facilities worldwide.  We also plan to cover flowmeter manufacturers that recalibrate flowmeters, and also mobile calibration facilities.  We are doing separate studies on liquid and gas recalibration.  I think that these studies should be a valuable database of information for our committee work.  You can find a description of these studies at www.flowcalibration.org.

This committee is strictly a volunteer effort, and so far has no official sanction.  However, my hope is that if we do succeed in coming up with a usable set of recalibration guidelines, we can approach some of the organizations like AGA and API for approval of the guidelines.  Short of this, we can publish our report and circulate it among interested manufacturers and end-users.  Since no one has to my knowledge attempted this before, I think the results will be met with quite a lot of interest.

So far, the following people have volunteered to be on this committee:

Dr. Jesse Yoder (Flow Research) (jesse@flowresearch.com)

Tom Ballard (Circor International) (thomas.ballard@circor.com)

Peter Brand (Avans Hogeschool Tilburg) (peter@sparckxconsulting.com)

Dr. Gregor Brown (Cameron) (gbrown18@slb.cameron.com)

Bob Carrell (Hoffer Flow Controls) (bcarrell@hofferflow.com)

Joel Clancy (CEESI) (jclancy@ceesi.com)

Terry Cousins (CEESI Measurement Solutions) (tcousins@ceesims.com)

Pankaj Gupta (GAIL India Limited) (pk_gupta@gail.co.in)

Thomas Boy Jacobsen (FORCE Technology) (tyj@force.dk)

Dr. Aaron Johnson (NIST) (aaron.johnson@nist.gov)

Dr. Tom Kegel (CEESI) (tkegel@ceesi.com)

Tom Kemme (Magnetrol) (tkemme@magnetrol.com)

Dick Laan (Krohne Altometer) (d.laan@krohne.com)  

John Lansing (Lansing Measurement Services LLC) (sonicjohn@earthlink.net)

Dr. Phil Mark (TUV SUD Ltd.) (phil.mark@tuv-nel.co.uk)

Tom O’Banion (Micro Motion) (tom.obanion@emerson.com)

Didier Pabois (Faure Herman, Groupe IDEX) (dpabois@idexcorp.com)

Dean Standiford (Emerson Process Management) (dean.standiford@emerson.com)

Wilhelm Staudt (Endress+Hauser Flowtec AG) (Wilhelm.Staudt@flowtec.endress.com)

Steve Stewart (Oil & Gas Process Solutions) (Steve.stewart@flowmd.com)  

Tom Stonehouse (Baker Hughes, a GE Compny) (thomas.stonehouse@bhge.com)

Remco van den Berg (VSL b.v.) (RvdBerg@vsl.nl)

Eric van Doorn (ODS Metering Systems BV) (Eric.vandoorn@kloeckner.com)

Aguko Willis (Kenya Bureau of Standards) (agukow@kebs.org

The first task of the committee was to formulate criteria for determining when an inline multipath ultrasonic custody transfer needs to be recalibrated.  This included running a software program, using a check meter, running diagnostics, doing dry calibration, or any other method that may be effective.  We then addressed other types of ultrasonic flowmeters, as well as other flowmeter types such as turbine, differential pressure with different primary elements, vortex, magnetic, and thermal. 

Jesse Yoder
President, Flow Research

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