For businesses, unplanned delays caused by measurement equipment downtime impacts productivity and profitability. As such, businesses are forced to invest heavily in technology and programs to protect themselves against these risks. The focus of oil and gas production and transmission companies is increasingly tilted towards capital discipline to bolster their defence against the rise and fall of the industry, and the need to ‘insure’ themselves against roadblocks like inaccurate measurement, operational downtime, damaged equipment, equipment repairs and replacement, and general safety issues.
Here’s where the use of sonic nozzles comes in to play. Sonic nozzles are designed to protect orifice meters, other differential pressure devices, turbines, and rotary devices from overspeed situations where the meters will be damaged. Minor damage can cause inaccurate readings, while major issues can lead to catastrophic failure, where the meter is severely damaged and must be repaired or replaced. By incorporating the use of sonic nozzles, companies put themselves in a position to avoid expensive meter repairs, time-consuming replacements, and costly operational downtime when the pipe or meter run must be shut down entirely to replace a damaged component. In terms of safety, sonic nozzles protect pipe components such as valves, probes, and turbine blades from being ripped out and sent down the pipeline.
Sonic nozzles work by creating a restriction in the pipeline. This restriction forces the gas velocity to increase at the throat of the nozzle. If the pipe flow rate gets high enough, the velocity at the nozzle throat reaches the local speed of sound. When this occurs, the flow is “choked”, and the mass flow rate through the nozzle cannot increase any further. A choked nozzle prevents the gas velocity in the pipe upstream of the nozzle from increasing as well. This condition protects anything installed in front of the nozzle, even if the downstream pressure continues to be reduced due to a valve failure or pipeline rupture. Sonic nozzles are also well known for their ability to directly improve the accuracy of flow measurement. They can be used as extremely repeatable flow meters on their own, and are typically used as the reference devices in many lab and calibration applications.
CPA sonic nozzles are suitable for protection of all types of flow meters, probes, strainers, valves, and other equipment. Our recommendation for the use of sonic nozzles is in sync with CPA’s goal to prevent and reduce measurement errors in oil and gas flows, and to help protect companies from long term equipment damage and potential safety issues. The flow nozzles have been proven by industry users to be reliable, cost beneficial, and require zero maintenance.
At CPA, we have the expertise to custom manufacture sonic nozzles to suit your unique process conditions and size requirements – delivering a finished product with no moving parts, no maintenance requirements, and a guaranteed low fouling rate with excellent reliability. Call us today to discuss how we can help you achieve flow accuracy: (403) 236-4480.