List of Various Types of Flow Measuring Devices

Getting an accurate flow rate in a flow system requires special kinds of flow meters. Liquid and gas industries are uses these critical instruments to determine the flow rate. Since the bottom line of any fluid processing plant depends on the repeatability and accuracy when measuring flow, you need to ensure that you have selected the right kind of measurement device. 

This article will highlight the various types of flow measurement devices and how they are used in different applications. Continue reading to gain more knowledge about flow measurement instruments. 

What are Flow Measurement Devices? 

Flow meters are necessary for any industry that uses fluids or gas in its processes. These essential tools are use to determine its read flow rate that may be volumetric or mass and in linear or non-linear scales. These devices are calling meters and measure gas, vapor, or liquid substances. They are known by many names, including flow sensors, flow regulators, flow gauges, or flow switches. 

Devices are usually named based on how they are used or their functions in the flow measurement industry. They are purposely use to improve accuracy, precision, and fluid resolution, and using them properly adds value to your operations by improving efficiency, lowering maintenance costs, and saving time. Let’s look at some common flow meters used in different industries

Types of Flow Measurement Devices (flow meters) 

Typically, two main kinds of flow meters are available, including fluid or gas flow measurement instruments. There are five main categories in fluid measurement devices, namely velocity meter types, positive displacement flow meters, mass flow meters, open channel flow meters, and differential pressure flow meters. Let’s take a comprehensive look at all these flow meters.

Velocity meter types

The flow rate is dependent on velocity flow meter types by calculating flow speed. These meter types measure the flow’s depth and average air velocity, which produce accurate readings. This allows the flow rate in the entire flow system to maintain the same. Compared to differential flow meters, velocity flow meters can measure flow in a wide range. Main velocity flow meters include electromagnetic, turbine, and pitot tube flow meters.

Positive displacement flow meter types 

Positive displacement or PD flow meters are perfect flow measurement devices for measuring viscous fluids through sensors or rotors. Diaphragms, pistons, gears, or vanes are best for displacing airflow. They don’t require straight pipes to measure flow rate; they make ideal flow meters with no straight lines. PD flowmeters also work well in applications that normally experience turbulence. 

Differential pressure flow meter types 

To measure flow rate, these flowmeters use the Bernoulli Equation. This equation states that when the pressure of the flow decreases, when its speed increases. They provide two kinds of flow readings: the primary and the secondary measurement. Kinetic energy changes cause the primary reading, and the second reading is measure by the second element of the flow meter. Examples of these flowmeters include rotameters, venturi flow meters, flow nozzles, and orifice plates. 

Mass flow meter types 

In mass flow meters, the flow rate is determine by dividing the density of the fluid by the volumetric flow rate of the fluid. The Coriolis Effect is here, referring to an inertial force that acts on objects. The object needs to be in motion within a given reference point.

Open channel flow meter types 

These types of water flow meters usually use the height of the fluid to determine the flow rate. The types of flow devices and these flow meters are usually helping to open air.


These are the different flow meters used to measure flow rate in various flow systems. Matching your flow rate measuring device with the right application is always ideal for accuracy, safety, and repeatability. It also ensures that wastages due to regular leaks do not occur within the flow system. 

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