Selecting a Digital Flowmeter for GC Use

By: Jaime Martain, Reporter US Volume 33.2

Those doing gas chromatography must routinely measure gas flows when setting up an instrument, developing a method, or troubleshooting. With today’s modern GCs, chromatographers may rely on the instrument readings for setting flow rates. However, a flowmeter is still an essential tool to have for verifying the instrument readings or when troubleshooting is necessary. Gas flowmeters generally fall into two types, volumetric and mass, each with its advantages and limitations. Both types measure the amount of gas exiting a column or split vent in a specific time period. We offer several makes and models of digital flowmeters. Table 1 directly compares several specifications of each unit.

The Ellutia 7000 is a pocket-sized flowmeter with a large OLED display, which makes reading flows clear and easy. Unlike other flowmeters, the Ellutia 7000 can operate in either a volumetric or a mass mode. The built-in rechargeable battery means the user no longer has to worry about changing dead batteries.

The Agilent® ADM 2000 is a field-portable flowmeter which measures flow volumetrically, so you don’t have to make any adjustments when changing from one gas to another.

The Humonics Optiflow 520 is a bubble flowmeter, one of the most useful tools in a GC lab. They are very reliable and easy-to-use. The principle is that optical sensors detect when the bubble enters and exits the calibrated tube. A microprocessor then calculates the resulting volumetric flow rate and displays it on a small screen.

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