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Revenues from magnetic flowmeters exceed revenues from all other flowmeter types
According to a new study from Flow Research, magnetic flowmeters generate more revenue worldwide than any other type of flowmeter. Revenue from magnetic flowmeters exceeds revenue from all other flowmeter types, including Coriolis, positive displacement, turbine and differential pressure (DP) meters. The story is somewhat different in terms of units, however. More differential pressure and variable area flowmeters are sold annually than magnetic flowmeters. Despite this, the higher average selling price of magnetic flowmeters enables them to generate more revenues annually than these other types of meters.
Most flowmeters do their best work in clean liquids or gases. This is true, for example, of turbine, Coriolis, ultrasonic transit time and vortex meters. Magnetic flowmeters, by contrast, thrive on dirty liquids. Magnetic flowmeters and Doppler ultrasonic meters are the only two of the main types of meters that do well in dirty and impure liquids, although DP meters also can measure dirty liquids if they have the right kind of primary element. Magnetic flowmeters are used to measure the flow of conductive liquids and slurries, including pulp and paper slurries and black liquor. Their main limitation is that they cannot measure hydrocarbons, which are nonconductive, and hence are not widely used in the petroleum industry.
While the magnetic flowmeter market is a mature and stable one, there are some new product developments in the market that favor continued growth. One recent development is the two-wire magnetic flowmeter. Four-wire meters have a dedicated power supply. Two-wire meters use the power available from the loop power supply. This reduces wiring costs, and can result in lower installation costs. These meters are becoming more popular with users due to the cost savings involved. While two-wire meters still represent only a small percentage of the total magnetic flowmeters sold, their use grew significantly from 2008 to 2013.
Another important development is growth in battery-operated and wireless magnetic flowmeters. Battery-operated meters make it possible to install magnetic flowmeters in hard-to-reach places, and wireless meters can transmit a receivable signal where the use of wires is impractical. Both of these segments represent fast-growing areas of the magnetic flowmeter market.
A research study from Flow Research, “The World Market for Magnetic Flowmeters,” fifth edition, provides market size worldwide and by geographic region. It also looks at the use of magnetic flowmeters by industry. These flowmeters are widely used in the process industries, which include chemical, food and beverage, pharmaceutical, and pulp and paper. Magnetic flowmeters will increasingly be seen as an alternative to DP flowmeters. They are widely used in the food and beverage and pharmaceutical industries, where special liners enable them to be used in sanitary conditions. Some 29% of magnetic flowmeter revenue is from sales to the water and wastewater industry, which has the highest percentage of magnetic flowmeter sales of any of the process industries.