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Ultrasound Open Channel Flow-Speed Measurement Based on the Lateral Directional Echo Observations
Tokyo Denki University, Inzai, Chiba 270-1382, Japan
1Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology, Koganei, Tokyo 184-8588, Japan
(Received November 21, 2011; revised February 15, 2012; accepted March 20, 2012; published online July 20, 2012)
Conventional ultrasonic flowmeters have a problem in measuring the small open channel fluid flow. To solve this problem, a lateral observation technique using a single transmitter/receiver transducer attached at the bottom of the pipe was proposed. Pulse echo signals scattered from the particles in the medium were repetitively recorded with a constant time interval. From the slope of the correlation peak amplitude with the variation in pulse echo excitation time, the flow speed of the medium was estimated. The method has an advantage in that the variation in flow speed in the vertical depth direction is directly measured with a minimum measurement space. Moreover, the fluctuations caused by the turbulent water can be avoided compared with the case of a conventional method based on the time estimation method. Bubbles were generated by an aspirator and flour powder was mixed with water as scatterers in the imitated drainage water. The flow speed of water was measured with respect to the inflowing fluid volume. Moreover, vertical flow speed profiles were measured and compared with fluid flow simulation results. The results showed that the precision of the measured flow speed was satisfactory and tolerant against the turbulence of the water flow medium.
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