Principle of operation
The stream of gas entering the Mass Flow transducer is split by shunting a small portion of the flow through a capillary stainless steel sensor tube. The remainder of the gas flows through the primary flow conduit. The geometry of the primary conduit and the sensor tube are designed to ensure laminar flow in each branch. According to principles of fluid dynamics, the flow rates of a gas in the two laminar flow conduits are proportional to one another. Therefore, the flow rates measured in the sensor tube are directly proportional to the total flow through the transducer. In order to sense the flow in the sensor tube, heat flux is introduced at two sections of the sensor tube by means of precision-wound heater sensor coils. Heat is transferred through the thin wall of the sensor tube to the gas flowing inside. As gas flow takes place, heat is carried by the gas stream from the upstream coil to the downstream coil windings.
The resultant temperature dependent resistance differential is detected by the electronic control circuit. The measured temperature gradient at the sensor windings is linearly proportional to the instantaneous rate of flow taking place. An output signal is generated that is a function of the amount of heat carried by the gases to indicate mass molecular based flow rates.