Flow rate is the commonly used term for volume flow (or flow rate) and comes from fluid mechanics. It is the measure of the amount of a flowing or streaming medium per period of time that passes through a defined cross-section. The unit of measurement used is cubic meters per second (m³/s).
A wide range of media can be considered for the flow rate. In the case of liquid media, for example:
- Water, what is let through a dam
- Antifreeze, which is passed right into the engine to prevent freezing
- Oil, which is transported through pipelines over many kilometers
- Gasoline or diesel when refueling at the gas station
- Blood, which flows through the veins of human beings
- Wastewater, which moves through our sewage systems
In the case of gaseous media, these are, for example:
- Air in the form of “compressed air” which is used for braking systems, spring and damping components, and respirators
- Air used for artificial respiration in hospitals
- Water vapor as an energy carrier used in manufacturing processes
- Natural gas, which flows through pipelines
- Chemicals used in various industries
- Exhaust gas emitted by a car or truck
Why is the flow rate determined?
Flow rate is the flow variable that is most commonly measured technically. The flow rate or its measurement always provides information about the capacity of a fluid power system. Practical examples would be the filling of different containers, cans and barrels, precise dosing of substance mixtures in the chemical industry or the non-overloading of kilometer-long pipelines underground. Flow measurement is carried out by special measuring devices, so-called flow meters, which determine the values according to different methods. With a data logger, the flow can be measured at two different points and tracked over a longer period of time.
How can I regulate the flow rate?
Limiters, control valves, or constant flow switches are used to decrease or increase the flow rate as needed. These are included in the design, but can also be retrofitted to older systems or in the event of failures.« Zurück zum Glossar Index