Rubicon Water

BladeMeter(TM)

BladeMeter™

BladeMeter(TM) BladeMeter(TM) BladeMeter(TM)

The BladeMeter is a major advance in valve technology.

It's now possible to automatically deliver precise quantities of water at both high and low flow rates in pipelines using only gravity pressure and solar energy.

Features and Benefits


The BladeMeter controls and measures flow at the outlet end of natural pressure pipe and modulates to maintain a constant flow rate even when the supply pressure fluctuates. With remote control built-in, it can be remotely operated or pre-set to turn on and off automatically to deliver a constant and accurately measured flow rate and volume, day or night.


Its compact, all-in-one design ensures rapid installation, reliable operation and easy maintenance. Using only renewable energy, the BladeMeter has an extremely low cost of operation. Its unique actuation mechanism and large diameter reduces head loss, helps to prevent weed fouling and is easy to visually inspect, service and clean.


And by using Sonaray® flow measurement technology it measures accurately at high and very low flow rates, so it has the flexibility to deliver water at rates suited to a wide range of applications.


The BladeMeter is ideal for turnouts
  1. Connected to hydrostatic (gravity) pressure pipes
  2. Connected to open canal supply networks
  3. That need to pass a wide range of flow rates
  4. Requiring remote operation and accurate metering
  5. That need to be fully accessible for easy maintenance

Highlights
  1. Large 2' diameter for high flow gravity irrigation
  2. Fully submersible
  3. Wide flow measurement range
  4. Sonaray flow measurement accuracy of ±2.5%**
  5. Solar powered
  6. SCADA-ready communication system

Control capabilities

The BladeMeter's built-in software provides the following control possibilities:
 

Control objective Valve action
Local Position Opens to a desired position and stays there
  Flow Maintains a desired flow rate
Network* Demand Incorporates knowledge of pipe network dynamics and overall demand to maintain desired flow rates through multiple turnouts

* Network operation is only available when used in a pipe network with other BladeMeters as part of a Rubicon Low Energy Pipeline solution.


When used with Rubicon’s Low Energy Pipeline solution, the BladeMeter is able to manage large flows in situations where static head is frequently below 33' (14 PSI).


Local control pedestal

Each BladeMeter installation includes a robust pedestal that provides power and control to the valve and is a secure, weather proof housing for electronic components and batteries.


The pedestal also serves as a local user interface. A keypad and LCD display are located under the lockable lid, allowing farmers to monitor, or operators to control and troubleshoot on-site.


Low maintenance

The BladeMeter’s compact, all-in-one design allows it to be maintained in the field with minimal tools, training, and easily replaceable parts.

  1. High quality components designed for long-life
  2. Unique dual-plate design helps prevent weed fouling
  3. Built-in on-site diagnostic software and remote alerts
  4. Control and meter components easily accessible for visual inspection

Unique low head loss design

Traditional butterfly valves use a circular disc in the flow path to control flow though the conduit. This creates substantial flow disturbance, resulting in head loss, particularly at lower flow rates when the valve is only open by a small amount. Many valves are inherently unstable at lower opening angles, which limits their ability to precisely control flows. The disc also forms an obstruction upon which debris can easily become wedged.


The BladeMeter’s unique dual-plate design provides excellent hydraulic performance, minimizing flow disturbance and maximizing flow capacity. The control plates sit downstream of the flow path and their contoured surfaces promote a smooth and symmetrical flow profile, making it ideal for gravity applications where it is essential to minimise head loss.


Additionally the dual plate design minimizes the opportunity for weeds and other debris to accumulate and clog the meter.
 

Traditional valve  (plan view)

   
  Traditional valve designs, such as butterfly valves cause swirling eddies resulting in friction losses and create an obstruction for weeds and other debris to catch on

BladeMeter™ (plan view)

   
 

The BladeMeter’s control plates have been designed to minimize head loss by maintaining a uniform flow profile
 

 

BladeMeter flow measurement accuracy

The BladeMeter's Sonaray technology enables it to measure to within ±2.5% at flow rates ranging from 0.4 to 20 cfs.
 

2' BladeMeter prototype relative to ABB Magmaster at Rubicon hydraulics laboratory

 

**Accuracy of 2' BladeMeter verified by Rubicon Hydraulics Laboratory, February 2014

 

 

 

Features and Benefits


The BladeMeter controls and measures flow at the outlet end of natural pressure pipe and modulates to maintain a constant flow rate even when the supply pressure fluctuates. With remote control built-in, it can be remotely operated or pre-set to turn on and off automatically to deliver a constant and accurately measured flow rate and volume, day or night.


Its compact, all-in-one design ensures rapid installation, reliable operation and easy maintenance. Using only renewable energy, the BladeMeter has an extremely low cost of operation. Its unique actuation mechanism and large diameter reduces head loss, helps to prevent weed fouling and is easy to visually inspect, service and clean.


And by using Sonaray® flow measurement technology it measures accurately at high and very low flow rates, so it has the flexibility to deliver water at rates suited to a wide range of applications.


The BladeMeter is ideal for turnouts
  1. Connected to hydrostatic (gravity) pressure pipes
  2. Connected to open canal supply networks
  3. That need to pass a wide range of flow rates
  4. Requiring remote operation and accurate metering
  5. That need to be fully accessible for easy maintenance

Highlights
  1. Large 2' diameter for high flow gravity irrigation
  2. Fully submersible
  3. Wide flow measurement range
  4. Sonaray flow measurement accuracy of ±2.5%**
  5. Solar powered
  6. SCADA-ready communication system

Control capabilities

The BladeMeter's built-in software provides the following control possibilities:
 

Control objective Valve action
Local Position Opens to a desired position and stays there
  Flow Maintains a desired flow rate
Network* Demand Incorporates knowledge of pipe network dynamics and overall demand to maintain desired flow rates through multiple turnouts

* Network operation is only available when used in a pipe network with other BladeMeters as part of a Rubicon Low Energy Pipeline solution.


When used with Rubicon’s Low Energy Pipeline solution, the BladeMeter is able to manage large flows in situations where static head is frequently below 33' (14 PSI).


Local control pedestal

Each BladeMeter installation includes a robust pedestal that provides power and control to the valve and is a secure, weather proof housing for electronic components and batteries.


The pedestal also serves as a local user interface. A keypad and LCD display are located under the lockable lid, allowing farmers to monitor, or operators to control and troubleshoot on-site.


Low maintenance

The BladeMeter’s compact, all-in-one design allows it to be maintained in the field with minimal tools, training, and easily replaceable parts.

  1. High quality components designed for long-life
  2. Unique dual-plate design helps prevent weed fouling
  3. Built-in on-site diagnostic software and remote alerts
  4. Control and meter components easily accessible for visual inspection

Unique low head loss design

Traditional butterfly valves use a circular disc in the flow path to control flow though the conduit. This creates substantial flow disturbance, resulting in head loss, particularly at lower flow rates when the valve is only open by a small amount. Many valves are inherently unstable at lower opening angles, which limits their ability to precisely control flows. The disc also forms an obstruction upon which debris can easily become wedged.


The BladeMeter’s unique dual-plate design provides excellent hydraulic performance, minimizing flow disturbance and maximizing flow capacity. The control plates sit downstream of the flow path and their contoured surfaces promote a smooth and symmetrical flow profile, making it ideal for gravity applications where it is essential to minimise head loss.


Additionally the dual plate design minimizes the opportunity for weeds and other debris to accumulate and clog the meter.
 

Traditional valve  (plan view)

   
  Traditional valve designs, such as butterfly valves cause swirling eddies resulting in friction losses and create an obstruction for weeds and other debris to catch on

BladeMeter™ (plan view)

   
 

The BladeMeter’s control plates have been designed to minimize head loss by maintaining a uniform flow profile
 

 

BladeMeter flow measurement accuracy

The BladeMeter's Sonaray technology enables it to measure to within ±2.5% at flow rates ranging from 0.4 to 20 cfs.
 

2' BladeMeter prototype relative to ABB Magmaster at Rubicon hydraulics laboratory

 

**Accuracy of 2' BladeMeter verified by Rubicon Hydraulics Laboratory, February 2014

 

 

 

Technologies


The BladeMeter uses core technologies which are common across TCC® products:


Sonaray® flow measurement

The BladeMeter employs Rubicon's Sonaray cross-path ultrasonic flow measurement technology. Four transducers on a horizontal plane send and receive ultrasonic pulses to determine velocity by measuring the transit time taken for the pulses to travel between transducers.

Cross-path measurement means that the control valve can be located directly downstream from the measurement area without affecting accuracy. It also eliminates the need for flow profile calibrations that are required for single-point, single-path and doppler flow meters.

The BladeMeter also has a downward facing transducer to verify that the pipe is completely full, eliminating flow measurement error caused by partially full conduits.

Cross-path measurement (plan view)

   
  Four transducers implement cross-path transit time measurement to sample the velocity field

Pipe-not-full sensor (side view)

   
 

A downward-facing transducer transmits a signal which reflects off the bottom of the meter pipe. Any air in the top of the pipe prevents transmission and reception of the signal triggering an alarm.
 

 

Valve control technology

The BladeMeter’s drive mechanism is a nut and shaft system that uses opposing threads machined into a high grade stainless-steel shaft to provide positive drive for valve opening and closing. Together with integrated digital valve position sensing, the BladeMeter precisely modulates to deliver a required flow rate, even with fluctuating supply pressure.


The control plates are driven by a long-life brushless motor and gearbox located within a fully submersible housing and an integrated water detection sensor provides peace of mind against water ingress.


Rubicon’s SolarDrive® technology – a purpose built integrated circuit board – manages valve positioning, solar power regulation, battery charge, fusing and the pedestal keypad interface.

 

 

 

       Submersible motor housing

 

        SolarDrive

 

Technologies


The BladeMeter uses core technologies which are common across TCC® products:


Sonaray® flow measurement

The BladeMeter employs Rubicon's Sonaray cross-path ultrasonic flow measurement technology. Four transducers on a horizontal plane send and receive ultrasonic pulses to determine velocity by measuring the transit time taken for the pulses to travel between transducers.

Cross-path measurement means that the control valve can be located directly downstream from the measurement area without affecting accuracy. It also eliminates the need for flow profile calibrations that are required for single-point, single-path and doppler flow meters.

The BladeMeter also has a downward facing transducer to verify that the pipe is completely full, eliminating flow measurement error caused by partially full conduits.

Cross-path measurement (plan view)

   
  Four transducers implement cross-path transit time measurement to sample the velocity field

Pipe-not-full sensor (side view)

   
 

A downward-facing transducer transmits a signal which reflects off the bottom of the meter pipe. Any air in the top of the pipe prevents transmission and reception of the signal triggering an alarm.
 

 

Valve control technology

The BladeMeter’s drive mechanism is a nut and shaft system that uses opposing threads machined into a high grade stainless-steel shaft to provide positive drive for valve opening and closing. Together with integrated digital valve position sensing, the BladeMeter precisely modulates to deliver a required flow rate, even with fluctuating supply pressure.


The control plates are driven by a long-life brushless motor and gearbox located within a fully submersible housing and an integrated water detection sensor provides peace of mind against water ingress.


Rubicon’s SolarDrive® technology – a purpose built integrated circuit board – manages valve positioning, solar power regulation, battery charge, fusing and the pedestal keypad interface.

 

 

 

       Submersible motor housing

 

        SolarDrive

 

Specifications

General
K-factor (head loss coefficient) 1.0 The BladeMeter’s head loss characteristics are similar to those of a normal pipe exit
Data interface Local display (4 line LCD), Modbus serial data interface
Units of measurement User definable (metric/imperial (US))
Keypad language English, Spanish, French, Chinese and Italian
Data tags 140+ available for integration into SCADA systems
Data storage All volumetric usage is accumulated and backed up internally in nonvolatile memory
Not full alarm Alarm indicates when pipe is not full
Control Local or remote via SCADA
Electronics  SolarDrive® power management and control technology housed in the local control pedestal. Each unit passes a 12 hour heat pre-stress and 100% functional test
Control Local or remote via SCADA
Drive mechanism Opposing thread nut and shaft system
Motor  12V DC
Valve position  Hall effect sensor
Seal performance  Less than 0.1 gallons/minute/foot of seal (exceeds AWWA C513 standard)
Actuation options  12V DC powered (solar); 120-240V AC powered
Typical stroke time 4-5 minutes
Enclosure rating NEMA 6
Flow measurement
Flow measurement range 0.4 to 20 cfs
Technique Cross-path ultrasonic transit-time (also referred to as acoustic transit-time)
Transit-time measurement resolution 100 picoseconds
Measurement frequency 1 second (configurable)
Accuracy 

±2.5% 

**Accuracy of 2' BladeMeter verified by Rubicon Hydraulics Laboratory, February 2014 

Velocity measurement range Accuracy listed above is achieved at flow velocities greater than 1" per second
Sensor quantity  5 ultrasonic transducers
Calibration method Factory pre-calibrated with simple in-field verification process
Material
Meter body Marine grade aluminum
Valve Die cast aluminum
Hardware Stainless-steel
Drive shaft Stainless-steel
Drive nuts Phosphor bronze
Seals EDPM rubber (Durometer 50 (Shore A))
Transducer housing Injection moulded xenoy
Power
Power supply  12V sealed gel lead acid battery charged from solar panel or AC line power
Solar panel  85W monocrystalline
Batteries  2 or 3 12V 28 Ah sealed gel lead acid with temperature sensor (~5yr life, provides ~5 days of operation without solar or AC line power)
Communications
Protocols  Modbus, DNP3, MDLC 

Specifications subject to change

Specifications

General
K-factor (head loss coefficient) 1.0 The BladeMeter’s head loss characteristics are similar to those of a normal pipe exit
Data interface Local display (4 line LCD), Modbus serial data interface
Units of measurement User definable (metric/imperial (US))
Keypad language English, Spanish, French, Chinese and Italian
Data tags 140+ available for integration into SCADA systems
Data storage All volumetric usage is accumulated and backed up internally in nonvolatile memory
Not full alarm Alarm indicates when pipe is not full
Control Local or remote via SCADA
Electronics  SolarDrive® power management and control technology housed in the local control pedestal. Each unit passes a 12 hour heat pre-stress and 100% functional test
Control Local or remote via SCADA
Drive mechanism Opposing thread nut and shaft system
Motor  12V DC
Valve position  Hall effect sensor
Seal performance  Less than 0.1 gallons/minute/foot of seal (exceeds AWWA C513 standard)
Actuation options  12V DC powered (solar); 120-240V AC powered
Typical stroke time 4-5 minutes
Enclosure rating NEMA 6
Flow measurement
Flow measurement range 0.4 to 20 cfs
Technique Cross-path ultrasonic transit-time (also referred to as acoustic transit-time)
Transit-time measurement resolution 100 picoseconds
Measurement frequency 1 second (configurable)
Accuracy 

±2.5% 

**Accuracy of 2' BladeMeter verified by Rubicon Hydraulics Laboratory, February 2014 

Velocity measurement range Accuracy listed above is achieved at flow velocities greater than 1" per second
Sensor quantity  5 ultrasonic transducers
Calibration method Factory pre-calibrated with simple in-field verification process
Material
Meter body Marine grade aluminum
Valve Die cast aluminum
Hardware Stainless-steel
Drive shaft Stainless-steel
Drive nuts Phosphor bronze
Seals EDPM rubber (Durometer 50 (Shore A))
Transducer housing Injection moulded xenoy
Power
Power supply  12V sealed gel lead acid battery charged from solar panel or AC line power
Solar panel  85W monocrystalline
Batteries  2 or 3 12V 28 Ah sealed gel lead acid with temperature sensor (~5yr life, provides ~5 days of operation without solar or AC line power)
Communications
Protocols  Modbus, DNP3, MDLC 

Specifications subject to change