A comprehensive study recently published by Germany's Gas und Wärme-Institute (GWI, Gas and Heating Institute) confirmed the practical functionality of Sensirion's technology. The microthermal gas meter modules from leading Swiss sensor manufacturer are equipped with integrated gas recognition. The compensation software guarantees precise flow measurement despite the differing qualities of natural gas. Furthermore, independently of pressure and temperature, the mass flow meters provide reliable measurements with long-term consistency.
Gas quality on the world's markets varies enormously. The composition of H and L gases differs even within the same gas families. The composition of the gases imported for use in Europe, from Russia, the North Sea and Libya, varies considerably. Sensirion's sensor products are based on the thermal metering principle. Essentially, this form of metering depends on the type of gas, because every gas has different thermal properties. Unlike other solutions from the competition, however, Sensirion's gas meter modules feature an innovative and highly sophisticated algorithm that recognizes the composition of different gases and compensates precisely. The GWI recently confirmed the gas quality compensation of Sensirion's sensor products in a comprehensive study.
The Institute tested the gas meter modules with various natural H-family gases. It tested the accuracy of standard volume measurement and compared it with conventional diaphragm gas metering. The test gases used were normal air and common natural gases like methane, North Sea gas, RWE Süd gas, LNG and Libyan gas together with prepared and conditioned biogas. These natural gases cover variability within the H gas family. The GWI study shows conclusively that Sensirion successfully compensates for differing gas compositions. Independently of the type and quality of gas used, the measurement of standard volume with Sensirion technology, therefore, is always within the required tolerances.
As part of its study, the GWI also tested Sensirion's gas meter modules for their ability to compensate for temperature and to function correctly regardless of pressure: the technology passed on both counts. The standard volume flow is always displayed correctly, independently of seasonal temperature fluctuations in winter and summer and of their location at various altitudes. The technology's imperviousness to temperature and pressure changes removes the need for additional corrective sensors in the gas meter, making Sensirion technology a very low-cost, space-saving solution.
Sensirion's technology for smart microthermal gas meters has been carving out a place on the market for several years now. At present, over 100,000 of the modules are in use in Italy and Germany.
Sensirion's standard products are available for type G1.6, G2.5, G4 and G6 gas meters and have already proved their reliability, long-term stability and resistance to both dust and dirt. The compact design, the low power consumption and digital I2C interface facilitate simple integration and handling. Recently, Sensirion started offering customers a "Complete Design-In Solution", with the result that everything comes from a single source. Apart from its fully calibrated SGM70xx sensor product range, the company also supplies an electronic reference design that simplifies the integration of hardware and software, as well as partial certification of the gas meter module.
Sensirion thus continues to consolidate its position in the smart energy market. Its gas meter modules use the patented CMOSens® Technology and measure temperature- and pressure-compensated volumes in gas meters. This enables real-time calculation of gas consumption and creates the opportunity for greater transparency and control for both energy suppliers and end-consumers. It also leads to a long-term reduction in gas consumption and ensures that Sensirion's flow sensors also meet the demands of new European legislation on the introduction of smart metering.