Processing Magazine

Calibration validation in situ — how do you do?

Processing's Breakthrough Products 2012

December 1, 2012

Fox_FT3_Breakthrough_ProductOf the many positive features of its FT3 meter/transmitter, Marina, Calif.-based Fox Thermal Instruments says “calibration validation” is the most groundbreaking. The Fox Model FT3 Thermal Mass Flow Meter and Temperature Transmitter improves efficiency and supports compliance with environmental mandates, while eliminating the cost and inconvenience of annual factory calibration.

Validating calibration without removing the meter from the pipe or sending it for re-calibration, the company says, revolutionizes how operators interface with flowmeters.

Other flowmeter manufacturers offer calibration validation, the company says, but their methods often involve extra equipment or gas canisters or removing instrumentation from the pipe. Moreover, with these other methods, no certificate is available to record the test for proof of regulatory compliance as it pertains to calibration.

Using CAL-V, and its innovative design approach, the test may be performed in the pipe, at process conditions, with just a push of a button. It takes about four minutes. If FT3 View software is used, a calibration validation certificate can be printed. With a pass result, annual shipment of the meter to its manufacturer for recalibration is no longer necessary.

Zero CAL-CHECK is a companion test to CAL-V calibration validation, which tests sensor functionality and its associated signal processing circuitry. Zero CAL-CHECK does the following:

• Checks for build-up on sensor that affects calibration

• Further validates the zero stability of the meter

• Checks sensor thermal conductivity (heat transfer capability)

Zero CAL-CHECK is done at zero flow to ensure a valid test result. A Fox packing gland assembly allows the meter’s sensor to be isolated from the flow. Depending upon the configuration — in-situ or out of pipe — zero flow will either be compared to a customer-established field baseline or factory baseline.