What is The Flow
iPhoneOgraphy – 25 Mar 2016 (Day 85/366)
Water metering is the process of measuring water use.
In many developed countries water meters are used to measure the volume of water used by residential and commercial building that are supplied with water by a public water supply system. Water meters can also be used at the water source, well, or throughout a water system to determine flow through a particular portion of the system. In most of the world water meters measure flow in cubic metres or litres but in the USA and some other countries water meters are calibrated in cubic feet or US gallons on a mechanical or electronic register. Some electronic meter registers can display rate-of-flow in addition to total usage.
There are several types of water meters in common use. The choice depends on the flow measurement method, the type of end user, the required flow rates, and accuracy requirements.
In North America, standards for manufacturing water meters are set by the American Water Works Association.
There are two common approaches to flow measurement, displacement and velocity, each making use of a variety of technologies. Common displacement designs include oscillating piston and nutating disc meters. Velocity-based designs include single- and multi-jet meters and turbine meters.
There are also non-mechanical designs, for example electromagnetic and ultrasonic meters, and meters designed for special uses. Most meters in a typical water distribution system are designed to measure cold potable water only. Specialty hot water meters are designed with materials that can withstand higher temperatures. Meters for reclaimed water have special lavender register covers to signify that the water should not be used for drinking.
Additionally, there are electromechanical meters, like prepaid water meters and automatic meter reading meters. The latter integrates an electronic measurement component and a LCD with a mechanical water meter. Mechanical water meters normally use a reed switch, hall or photoelectric coding register as the signal output. After processing by the micro controller unit (MCU) in the electronic module, the data are transmitted to the LCD or output to an information management system.
Water meters are generally owned, read and maintained by a public water provider such as a city, rural water association or private water company. In some cases an owner of a mobile home park, apartment complex or commercial building may be billed by a utility based on the reading of one meter, with the costs shared among the tenants based on some sort of key (size of flat, number of inhabitants or by separately tracking the water consumption of each unit in what is called submetering).