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Handling Pressure Variation With a Mass Flow Controller


Petrochemical Research, Alternative Fuels Research


Downstream destination of the fluid (normally gases) is a reactor vessel and the test requirements are broad from a pressure standpoint. This would typically apply when the pressure exceeds 200 PSIG.

Optimum MFC System Setup   

Process Details and Specifications

Gases can range from hydrocarbons (i.e. methane, ethylene) to air, nitrogen, carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide. Pressures in the reactor vessel can range from a few hundred PSIG to several thousand PSIG. Since an MFC is a closed loop control system with a valve that is sized for a specific set of conditions for optimum performance, pressure variations can significantly impact the performance of the valve. Simply stated, if an MFC is sized for higher pressures, then use at low pressures may result in an inability to achieve the required maximum flow through the valve. If an MFC is sized for lower pressures, then use at higher pressures may result in an oversized valve that is attempting to operate close to the fully closed position.


The Brooks SLA Series MFC's are particularly suited for these types of applications for two reasons:
  1. High pressure capability: up to 4500 PSIG operating pressures
  2. Brooks in-house valve sizing capabilities
Although research applications are all unique and can change over time, Brooks has the capability, both at the factory and with our sales partners, to provide expert consultation over a wide range of operating conditions. We'll evaluate your specific needs to find a workable set of conditions to cover most, if not all, of your research testing needs. The result is a reduction in the number of MFCs needed to cover the entire range of your research, and eliminating the possibility of inadequate MFC performance, ensuring that all of your test data can be used. Brooks has worked with all of the major petrochemical research facilities around the world, as well as many universities supporting these high pressure applications.
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