Measurement technicians that use electronic devices to measure natural gas are often trained on how to utilize devices but are not often trained on the fundamentals of gas measurement.
The importance of understanding measurement fundamentals cannot be overstated. Measurement professionals need a solid foundation to understand the impact of not following industry standards and best practices to increase measurement certainty.
For example, you may have been taught how to utilize a vendor’s device to produce a measurement in the field. But, what happens if the device changes, your company changes to a different vendor, or you move to another company that utilizes a different device? How will you continue to deliver accurate measurement without an understanding of the fundamentals? If you do not have specific knowledge of gas measurement and electronic flow measurement, then you will have difficulty adjusting and producing accurate measurement.
This scenario highlights the importance of understanding the fundamentals of electronic flow measurement (EFM). This way, you will be armed with a baseline understanding of the industry standards, best practices, and fundamental principles so that you can confidently perform electronic measurement no matter the device utilized in the field.
This understanding can be achieved by registering for a fundamental measurement training class. Specifically, Gas Certification Institute (GCI) offers EFM training through our class, Gas Measurement Fundamentals & EFM Best Practices.
Gain Understanding of the Flow Measurement Industry Standard
Measurement technicians need to understand the core elements of API MPMS Ch. 21.1 (Flow Measurement Using Electronic Metering Systems: Electronic Gas Measurement).
API 21.1 describes the minimum specifications for electronic gas measurement systems that are used to perform measurement of natural gas utilizing industry-recognized primary measurement devices.
The standard sets the guidelines for achieving “accurate and auditable measurement” through the following steps:
- Test reports
- Change record reporting of electronic gas measurement system components
- Flow parameters
Measurement technicians need to gain an understanding of each of these fundamental steps so that you can confidently perform tasks in the field and produce accurate measurement records. This is imperative because seemingly minor variances can have far-reaching results for your company: revenue discrepancies, non-compliance issues, breach of contracts, and possible litigation.
Once you have become proficient in the basics of API 21.1, you can advance to understanding the key aspects of primary, secondary, and tertiary devices used in the field.
Understanding the Devices Used in Electronic Flow Measurement
Concerning electronic devices used in the field, API 21.1 focuses on primary measurement devices. However, API 21.1 also provides guidance on secondary and tertiary devices to help complete custody transfer of product throughout the gas value chain. Devices are grouped as follows:
- Primary devices: Orifice meters, turbine, rotary, or diaphragm measurement devices. These devices are mounted on the pipeline and have direct contact with the product being measured.
- Secondary devices: Data-driven devices that calculate temperature flow, static pressure, differential pressure, relative density, and other variables. This data feeds into a tertiary device…
- Tertiary devices: Flow computers are programmed to take the inputs from the primary and secondary devices to calculate flow.
Notably, API 21.1 incorporates the recommended practices from AGA 3 (Orifice Metering of Natural Gas and Other Related Hydrocarbon Fluids) that provide guidance on performing natural gas measurement when using orifice meters.
Measurement professionals need to gain an understanding of these industry standards and best practices to perform primary measurement, secondary measurement, and tertiary measurement using each device. Any inconsistencies using primary and secondary devices could have an adverse impact on the final output delivered through the tertiary device, creating a discrepancy.
Receiving training on this fundamental aspect of EFM will help address common mistakes, smooth out variances between readings, and create more consistency in the final measurement. When consistency is achieved, then your company will be better positioned to rely on the accuracy of the reported measurement.
Register for Our EFM Training Class
Measurement technicians can support their company and grow in their career by achieving a fundamental understanding of gas measurement and EFM. We believe the best method is to receive direct training and instruction on the fundamentals, helping you advance beyond basic knowledge of devices used by your company.
Our training class, Gas Measurement Fundamentals & EFM Best Practices, supports measurement technicians by providing sound instruction on the following fundamental elements:
- Best practices of electronic flow measurement.
- Industry standards for custody transfer and non-custody transfer measurement.
- How to conduct and witness a meter test.
- Relationship between primary and secondary elements in gas measurement, gas composition, gas laws, and industry definitions.
- Plus many more learning outcomes.
We invite you to register for the next class in the GCI training schedule. We are positive that you will grow in your knowledge, understanding, and capabilities to return to the field with confidence to consistently perform measurement.
Have questions about registering for the next class or our extended Gas Measurement Fundamentals Certification class? Contact GCI directly by phone at 281-598-7200 or by email at email@example.com.