Mainstream uses the area-velocity method to give a continuous or time sample measurement of fluid flow. Mainstream uses a streamlined probe that operates immersed in the flowing liquid. The velocity probe transmits ultrasound into the liquid to create a zone of inspection. Bubbles and solid particles carried through this zone by the flow, even when present in only minute quantities, reflect ultrasound back to the probe.
The received ultrasound signal is processed to produce a histogram of the flow velocities. Analysing this histogram gives the mean flow velocity. Only signals containing verified velocity information are used, thereby ensuring measurement integrity.
Liquid level is measured by a submerged pressure transmitter or ultrasonic sensor. The flow cross-sectional area is deduced from the liquid level measurement and the stored description of the channel or pipe cross section. The flow rate is the flow velocity multiplied by the flow cross-sectional area.