Sustainability is a top-level concern for companies in the industrial space, especially when it comes to water management and how industrial players in the oil & gas, concrete, and chemical industries manage their water consumption, flow, and distribution to foster superior performance and efficiency. In fact a recent study published in IIoT World revealed around 32 billion cubic meters of water is lost every year due to inefficient water flow management.
You can’t measure what you don’t control. In other words, industrial flow meters are a mission-critical tool in controlling how much water your industrial application uses, how your water supply is used, and where inefficiencies can be curbed to reduce consumption and cost.
For water-dependent industrial players like concrete batch plants or oil & gas processors, water is revenue and this gross inefficiency means significant losses in productivity and profitability.
The good news is today’s generation of industrial flow meters are engineered with complete digitalization in mind to streamline the moving parts associated with legacy water management systems. Designed using IIoT (Industrial Internet of Things, which connects devices via the Internet for optimized communication and data-sharing), advanced analytics, and real-time reporting, industrial flow meters are a powerful ally in creating a smart water infrastructure that helps companies work faster, more efficiently, and more effectively.
Defining & understanding smart water
We mentioned the term ‘smart water infrastructure’ a moment ago, so before we discuss how industrial flow meters help achieve smart water management or infrastructure, let’s define and better understand the concept of smart water.
Smart water frameworks are where IIoT-enabled water meters and associated intelligent infrastructure provide continuous and historical data for operators to evaluate water flow and efficiency in real time. This not only provides operators the flexibility to adjust water flow, temperatures, or variances based on demand, it also helps improve system intelligence, visibility, and control across the entire water network.
A typical smart water network utilizes meters, endpoints, and data collection and management systems to collect flow data and securely transmit it to the data collection system at regular intervals. This helps companies monitor their network to identify potential issues such as leaks or unwanted fluctuations in water flow.
This is of course particularly relevant for concrete and oil & gas applications, specifically in production or processing contexts that run on a 24/7 basis.
What adds further value to a smart water network for today’s industrial players is that it helps to future-proof water management processes to ensure long-term efficiency, reliability, and efficacy. Enhanced flow meter accuracy, increased data gathering and storing, and enhanced communication between connected devices will help operators keep pace and adapt to changes in state, local, or governmental water use regulations as well as fluctuations in market forces.
how industrial flow meters create a smart water infrastructure
To best understand how industrial flow meters create a smart water infrastructure, let’s examine the humble fork. Ah, the fork — an unassuming yet pivotal part of the cutlery family. With three separate prongs all working in unison, a fork is easiest, fastest, and most efficient to eat any number of foods. In this same vein, industrial flow meters also operate on a three-pronged approach in helping operators engineer a smart water infrastructure for a broad range of industrial applications.
- Longevity of equipment: Like much of today’s industrial solutions, the complete digitalization of flow meters and the removal of moving parts or legacy components provides increased durability and prolonged service life, which in turn allows for greater meter precision for a longer window of time. This also provides greater degrees of precision in monitoring and the ability to be deployed in more challenging applications often found in the oil & gas and chemical processing space.
- Data-driven operation: Compared to 20 years ago, the real-time monitoring and reporting capability of today’s flow meters is simply unmatched. In-depth monitoring on flow, temperature, pressure variances, and overall consumption enable a more proactive approach as opposed to reactive mindset, which helps operators stay ahead of potential disruptions in production as well as respond to changes in demand. In addition, network alerts allow operators to pinpoint exact areas in the network for troubleshooting to avoid costly downtime. For example, Badger Meter’s M2000 series provides real-time flow data, allows for programmable parameters, and provides diagnostic alerts on a backlit LCD screen for ease of use and pinpoint accuracy.
- Pump optimization: The industrial flow meters of today provide ultimate pump optimization through a more realized picture of how pumps are functioning alone or as part of a pump system. Flow meters can also be used to test pump efficiency and structural integrity to identify leaks or areas of wear and tear. In addition, flow meters are critical in creating a more synchronized pump cycle.
the value of badger industrial flow meters
At this point, the case for industrial flow meters in creating a sustainable, productive, and profitable water management system should be pretty clear, and Badger Meter’s line of flow meters for almost any industrial application provides superior performance, unparalleled quality, and unmatched service and support. Badger Meters from IPEC are engineered to fit any application regardless of size or scale, and can be customized to exact specifications in-house for quick delivery and reduced downtime.
Designed with IIoT in mind to help industrial producers embrace a more digitized, connected infrastructure, Badger meters also provide best-in-class durability and reliability. Engineered to meter liquids that are highly corrosive, viscous, or contain moderate amounts of solids that require special handling, Badger meters are produced to handle the most strenuous industrial applications.
Manufactured for the highest level of quality, Badger meters contain no component parts in the flow stream to help reduce pressure loss during operation and maintain meter precision regardless of temperature, pressure, viscosity, density, or flow profile. In addition, the lack of moving parts in favor of a completely digitized operation system means little to no maintenance is required.
Bottom line: Badger industrial flow meters provide the peace of mind you need to go with the flow.
Learn more about how Badger industrial flow meters from IPEC can help you create a smart water management system.