Research Papers: Gas Turbines: Controls, Diagnostics, and Instrumentation

Optimization of an Algorithm for the Measurement of Unsteady Flow-Rates in High-Pressure Pipelines and Application of a Newly Designed Flowmeter to Volumetric Pump Analysis

[+] Author and Article Information
A. Ferrari

Energy Department,
Politecnico di Torino,
C.so duca degli Abruzzi, 24,
Torino 10129, Italy
e-mail: alessandro.ferrari@polito.it

P. Pizzo

Energy Department,
Politecnico di Torino,
C.so duca degli Abruzzi, 24,
Torino 10129, Italy

1Corresponding author.

Contributed by the Controls, Diagnostics and Instrumentation Committee of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF ENGINEERING FOR GAS TURBINES AND POWER. Manuscript received October 30, 2014; final manuscript received September 1, 2015; published online October 28, 2015. Editor: David Wisler.

J. Eng. Gas Turbines Power 138(3), 031604 (Oct 28, 2015) (10 pages) Paper No: GTP-14-1599; doi: 10.1115/1.4031541 History: Received October 30, 2014; Revised September 01, 2015

An innovative, efficient, and robust algorithm is presented for the evaluation of the instantaneous flow-rate in high-pressure liquid flow pipelines. This algorithm is based on the pressure time histories measured at two locations. A simple ordinary differential equation has been derived from the mass and momentum conservation laws and has been solved analytically. This equation allows the flow-rate time fluctuations to be evaluated accurately around their mean value, without any need for initial datum on the liquid flow velocity. A measuring device has been designed and realized to evaluate the flow-rate. The proposed flowmeter layout consists of a piece of pipeline endowed with two piezoresistive pressure sensors equipped with miniaturized thermocouples, the pressure sensor conditioners and a central processing unit (CPU), in which the algorithm for the evaluation of the flow-rate has been implemented. A more sophisticated version of the flowmeter algorithm, which includes unsteady friction in the flow-rate evaluation, has also been developed. Different algorithm versions have been assessed and successfully validated through a comparison with numerical flow-rate data predicted using a reliable one-dimensional model of a common rail (CR) fuel injection system. The prototypal flowmeter has been installed at the delivery section of a CR volumetric pump in order to investigate the flow-rate ripple. The flowmeter traces have been compared with the predictions of a previously developed theoretical model for the pump delivered instantaneous flow-rate, in order to further assess the reliability of both the model and the flowmeter as well as to have a better understanding of the cause and effect relationships between the flow-rate time history and the dynamic working of the pump. The effects that the actuation of the fuel metering valve (FMV), which is placed at the CR pump inlet, has on the instantaneous delivered flow-rate have also been analyzed.

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Fig. 2

CR layout used for the flowmeter validation

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Fig. 3

Flowmeter validation results (double injection, pnom = 1200 bar, DT = 700 μs)

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Fig. 4

Flowmeter validation results (single injection, pnom = 400 bar, ET = 1000 μs)

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Fig. 5

Effect of unsteady friction on the flow-rate (single injection, pnom = 1200 bar, ET = 400 μs)

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Fig. 6

Effect of unsteady friction on the flow-rate (double injection, pnom = 800 bar, DT = 1000 μs)

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Fig. 9

Pump flow-rate ripple: flowmeter versus model results (pnom = 1000 bar, n = 1000 rpm)

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Fig. 10

Pump flow-rate ripple: flowmeter versus model results (pnom = 1400 bar, n = 1500 rpm)

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Fig. 15

Regulation strategy of the CR pump delivered flow-rate (pnom = 600 bar, n = 1000 rpm)

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Fig. 8

Application of the flowmeter to a high-pressure volumetric pump

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Fig. 7

Impact of the pressure transducer inaccuracy on the differential pressure measurement

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Fig. 14

Regulation strategy of the CR pump delivered flow-rate (pnom = 1000 bar, n = 1000 rpm)

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Fig. 13

Lump parameter model of the pump-pipe-rail-system

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Fig. 12

Flowmeter results at n = 1500 rpm, 〈G〉  = 13.8 g/s, and pnom = 1600 bar

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Fig. 11

Flowmeter results at n = 2000 rpm, 〈G〉  = 15.5 g/s, and pnom = 1200 bar




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