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1 INTRODUCTION

This guide introduces the Cimberio CIM 737, CIM 3737 Commissioning Set – a combined
double regulating valve and separate flow measurement device which provides high accuracy
flow balancing and measurement across all valve settings.

The commissioning sets are suitable for both heating (LPHW) and cooling applications at working
pressures up to 20 bar. Valve sizes between 15-50mm are available as “CR” brass oblique pattern
globe valves; valves from 65mm-1000mm are available as cast / ductile iron butterfly valves.

The main features of the Cimberio commissioning set are as follows:

• an orifice type flow measurement device permitting high accuracy flow


measurement to within ±5% regardless of valve setting (CIM 721).

• a metal to metal thread locking mechanism so that valve settings can be


accurately locked enabling the valve to be closed and re-opened to its exact
pre-set position.

• a flip up cap housing individual Allen keys for the locking of valve
positions.

• a valve position indicator scale which can be read from any angle.

• an EPDM lined valve plug providing tight shut-off for isolation purposes.

The valves have been tested by BSRIA in water containing high air and dirt levels (see
section 7). The results showed an excellent tolerance to such conditions, providing
confidence that the valves will retain a high level of accuracy and repeatability of flow
measurement under the worst of system conditions.

2
2.1 CIM 727
DOUBLE REGULATING VALVE

• Reduced Air & Dirt Accumulation


• Accurate Allen Key Locking TESTED FOR
PERFORMANCE
& RELIABILITY
• Non Rising Handle

VALVE IDENTIFICATION DISK UNDER HANDLE CAP

REPLACEABLE HANDLE

HEAT AND IMPACT RESISTANT


NYLON HANDLE

CLEAR 360º READING

SMOOTH OPERATION

360° RE-SETTABLE INDEX COLLAR

COMPACT VALVE CHAMBER

DZR BRASS

3
2.2 CIM 737
DOUBLE REGULATING SET DN 1/2 - DN 2”

Body CC752S Memory CW602N


Bonnet CW602N O-Ring HNBR
Stem CW602N Pin Steel
Gasket EPDM O-Ring HNBR
Shutter CW602N Knob Nylon 6
O-Ring HNBR Entrainer CW602N
Index Hostaform Cap Hostaform
Seeger Bronze Elastic ring Steel
1/10 turn index Hostaform Outdistance Nylon
Turn index Hostaform (only for DN 3/4 - 1” - 1 1/4”)

CIM 727 CIM 722

PRESSURE/TEMPERATURE RATINGS AT 1/2 TO 2” MATERIALS - MAIN FEATURES:


lbf/ in2 Body: cast non dezincifiable brass “CR” CC752S.
160
58 87 116 145 174 203 232 261 290 319
320 Bonnet: machined from drawn non dezincifiable
284
brass “CR” EN 12164 CW602N.
140
Stem and metal components: machined from
120 248
drawn brass bar “CR” EN 12164 CW602N.
100 212
Packing: O’Ring in HNBR.
°C °F
80 176 Shutter: machined from drawn brass bar “CR” EN
60 140
12164 CW602N.
Knob: nylon 6.
40 104
Disc face: EPDM rubber.
20 68
4 6 8 10 12 14 16 18 20 22 Hydrostatic test pressures:
bars
shell 24 bar (348 psi);
20 bar at –10 to 100°C – 290 lbf/in2 at 14 to 212°F seat 18 bar (261 psi).
16 bar at –10 to 120°C – 287 lbf/in2 at 14 to 248°F
Threading: parallel threads to ISO 7/1 Rp - BS 21 Rp.
DN 1/2 3/4 1” 1 1/4” 1 1/2” 2”

Grms. 475 645 860 1275 1890 2800

A 137,5 157 160 171 212 231

B 119 138,5 154 168,5 211 230

C 68 77 91 108 116 143

D 15 16,3 19,1 21,4 21,4 25,7

E 162,5 190 201,5 220 276 301,6

F 52 52 52 52 58 58

CH 28 33 40 51 56 71

DN 1/2 3/4 1” 1 1/4” 1 1/2” 2”

Grms. 161 207 252 400 460 710

A 25 28 31 36 39 45

C 66,5 66,5 63,5 71 71 79,5

D1 15 16,3 19,1 21,4 21,4 25,7

D2 15 16,3 19,1 21,4 21,4 25,7

CH 28 34 40 51 56 71

4
2.3 CIM 3737
DOUBLE REGULATING SET DN 65 - DN 300

Body GGG40 Diaphragm Stainless steel AISI 316


Seat rubber EPDM Body Fe 360B
Disc Stainless steel AISI 316
Stem Stainless steel AISI 316
Bushing Polyamid
O-Ring EPDM
Washer St 37
Bolt M8.8
Seeger Stainless steel
Handwheel GGG40

CIM 3110 DRV CIM 3722

PRESSURE/TEMPERATURE RATINGS AT DN 65 TO DN 300


lbf/in2
58 87 116 145 174 203 232 261 290 319 MATERIALS - MAIN FEATURES:
160 320

Body valve: GGG40.


140 284

120 248
Body union: Fe 360B.

100 212
Gauged diaphragm: stainless steel AISI 316.
°C °F
80 176 Seat rubber: EPDM.
60 140 Disc: stainless steel AISI 316.
40 104 Stem: stainless steel AISI 316.
20
4 6 8 10 12 14 16 18 20 22
68
Bushing: polyamid.
bars
Flanged connections: to UNI 2223 - PN 16.
16 bar at –10 to 100°C – 232 lbf/in2 at 14 to 212°F
16 bar at –10 to 120°C – 287 lbf/in2 at 14 to 248°F

DN 65 80 100 125 150 200 250 300


Grms. 4500 6200 7800 10000 12000 18500 27900 44700
C 46 46 52 56 56 60 68 78
C1 50 50 56,5 60,5 60,5 64,5 72,5 84,5
ØD 188 204 234 258 290 343 412 486
Ø D1 112 126 152 185 210 262 316 372
H1 74 96 110 122 136 160 201 237
H2 152 159 177 190 203 241 273 311
N 40 40 42 46 46 48 58 64
ØK 145 160 180 210 240 295 350 400
Ø Mxn 16x4 16x8 16x8 16x8 20x8 20x8 20x12 20x12

DN 65 80 100 125 150 200 250 300

PN 16 16 16 16 16 16 16 16

ØA 185 200 220 250 285 340 405 460

B 150 150 150 200 230 300 400 450

ØC 145 160 180 210 240 295 355 410

K 90° 90° 90° 90° 45° 30° 30° 30°

N. holes 4 8 8 8 8 12 12 12

5
THE NEED FOR HIGH ACCURACY FLOW
3 BALANCING AND MEASUREMENT

ENSURE UNIFORM BUILDING TEMPERATURES:


Terminals receiving too little flow may not deliver their
intended amounts of heating or cooling. This will mean
that the areas they serve may fail to reach design
temperatures under peak load conditions. Chilled water
systems where there is a latent cooling function (i.e. de-
humidification) are particularly sensitive to variations
from design flow rates.

IMPROVE CONTROL VALVE RESPONSE:


Modulating control valves may be unable to control
properly if the circuits they control start off with too
much or too little flow. In a circuit receiving too much Balanced system
flow, the first part of the control valve’s travel is wasted
just getting the flow rate back to its design value; in a
circuit receiving too little flow, the action of the valve may cause a dramatic drop in heat
transfer effectively making the valve behave as an on/off controller.

OPTIMISE ENERGY SAVINGS:


By ensuring an accurate balance of flow rates, the total flow rate from the pump will not need
to exceed the design value for the building. Furthermore, energy saving controls will operate
more effectively. For example, if the flow balance is poor, different parts of a building will
heat up or cool down at different rates. To compensate for this, optimiser controls may have
to bring on heating/cooling systems earlier than necessary to allow for the uneven heating
up/cooling down of the building.

PROVIDE THE CLIENT WITH A RECORD OF FINAL SYSTEM FLOW RATES:


Accurate balancing and flow measurement means that the client can be shown, and given
clear evidence, that the system to be handed over
complies with the designer’s specified flow rate figures.
This will give the client confidence that the system is
satisfactory.

FACILITATE TROUBLE-SHOOTING:
In the event of poor system performance, the presence of
balancing valves and flow measurement devices will
enable engineers to establish the locations and causes of
flow problems.

FACILITATE FUTURE MODIFICATIONS:


In the event that the system is modified or changed at a
future date, the presence of high accuracy balancing
valves and flow measurement devices will enable a new
Unbalanced system
balance of flows to be established.

6
ADVANTAGES OF FIXED ORIFICE OVER
4 VARIABLE ORIFICE FLOW MEASUREMENT

The idea to couple a double regulating valve to a fixed orifice device evolved in the UK in the
1980s. This combination was designed specifically to overcome the accuracy problems
associated with flow measurements utilising the pressure drops across variable orifice valves.
Variable orifice valves seldom
achieve the accuracy and
reliability of fixed orifice valves.
For a variable orifice valve, the
pressure signal across the plug is
used for flow measurement. A
graph of the relationship
between pressure drop and flow
rate is required for each valve
setting.
The fundamental weakness of
this design is that manufacturing
CIM 721 CIM 721 PRESSURE
tolerances can cause significant FIXED ORIFICE SIMULATION
flow measurement distortions
beyond a certain closure point, typically 50% closed. Beyond this point the flow measurement
accuracy can deteriorate dramatically, to ±30% or more! Since most of the valve’s resistance is
added in the last part of its closure, the valve’s balancing range is severely limited. The result
is a valve, which has either limited balancing capability, poor flow measurement accuracy, or
both. The limited operating range of variable orifice valves inevitably makes valve selection
more difficult, often resulting in valve sizes which are lower than adjoining pipe sizes.
Fixed orifice valves have none of these problems. Because the flow measurement function is
separated from the balancing function they can be regulated to nearly closed positions,
achieving much higher balancing pressures whilst maintaining flow measurement accuracy
within ±5% at any setting.

FIXED ORIFICE VARIABLE ORIFICE

Since their introduction, fixed orifice commissioning sets have become by far the
most preferred choice for UK design engineers and installation contractors.

7
5 DESIGN ADVANTAGES OF FIXED ORIFICE VALVES

To avoid the requirement for high balancing pressures, a popular approach amongst design
engineers has been to design systems such that some degree of self-balancing is achieved due
to the sizing and arrangement of pipe circuits. Typical design solutions might include the use
of reverse return circuits, low pressure loss distribution mains or the selection of terminal units
with equal resistances.

While this approach can help to achieve well balanced system flow rates, care must be taken
to avoid the following disadvantages:

• Reverse return circuits invariably require longer lengths of pipework


thereby increasing system costs and increasing pump pressure and energy
requirements.

• Low pressure loss mains are effectively over-sized pipes which are more
expensive than necessary and provide low velocity collecting points where
air can accumulate and corrosion can take place.

• Selecting terminal units with equal resistances effectively means that many
locations will end up with over-sized terminal units which will cost more and
exhibit poor control.

In addition to these points, by designing for self-balancing, the designer usually has
to spend more time on the design to ensure that pressure variations are as small as
possible, and that any remaining imbalance can be dealt with by the limited
trimming ability of a less accurate balancing valve.

8
6 FLOW AND PRESSURE SIMULATION GRAPHS

Computational fluid dynamics software has been used to demonstrate the stable pressure and flow
patterns across Cimberio balancing valves at different settings. The analysis shows that,
due to the compact body of the valve, turbulent zones and eddy currents are minimised, thereby
ensuring stable performance and resistance to air and dirt related problems.
CIM 727 Flow simulation graphs

2 turn open 3 turns open 4 turns open

5 turns open 6 turns open 7 turns open


CIM 727 Pressure simulation graphs

2 turn open 3 turns open 4 turns open

5 turns open 6 turns open 7 turns open

9
7.1 BSRIA VALVE TESTING REPORT

BSRIA is the UK’s leading centre for building services research. BSRIA offer independent and
authoritative research, information, testing and consultancy and market intelligence.
(e-mail: bsria@bsria.co.uk web: www.bsria.co.uk)

Since trapped air and dirt are the main causes of non-repeatable flow measurements
in small sized valves, we commissioned BSRIA to investigate their impact on the
performance of Cimberio balancing valves.

OBJECTIVES

• Determine the effects of trapped air on the kv values of each of the valves
at the 25% open setting

• Determine the effects of dirt suspended in the water on the kv values of


each of the valves at the 25% open setting

RESULTS

The graph below shows the results of the effects of trapped air on each of the three
valves when set at their 25% open positions.

Results of trapped air on valves at 25% open position.

10
7.2 BSRIA VALVE TESTING REPORT

The graph below shows the results of the effects of dirty water on each of the three
valves when set at their 25% open positions.

Results of dirty water on valves at 25% open position.

BSRIA’S CONCLUSIONS

“The results show that the valves tested are not significantly affected by the
presence of trapped air or fine dirt material suspended in the fluid stream.

For each test, the valve resistance was found to vary by less then 10% which is
extremely unlikely to produce a measureable variation in water flow rate.
Furthermore, the results show that by closing and re-opening the valve to its
locked position the resistance across the valve is repeatable within acceptable
limits.”

11
LOCATING REGULATING VALVES
8 AND FLOW MEASUREMENT DEVICES

In general, regulating valves should be located on all branches where it is anticipated


there will be a significant pressure imbalance. Flow measurement devices should be
included where flow rates need to be checked. The pipework schematic below illustrates
typical locations.

Isolating valve Double Regulating Valve Orifice type flow measurement device
Double regulating valve close coupled to flow measurement device Motorised three way valve Non-return valve

Typical locations for regulating valves and flow measurement devices

The convention in heating systems is to position regulating valves on the return sides of pipe
circuits where the water is coolest. In this position, valve pressures are more likely to be above
the water vapour pressure (and cavitation region), since vapour pressure increases with
temperature. In chilled water circuits the valve location makes little difference, although the
same convention tends to be applied.

Orifice type flow measurement devices usually require a uniform pattern of flow
through them to ensure measurement accuracy. Therefore, it is recommended
that at least 5 diameters of straight pipe are allowed upstream of each device.

12
9 LOW FLOW COMMISSIONING SETS

The smallest valve size in the range is 15mm nominal diameter. Because many modern systems
incorporate low duty terminal units with low flow requirements (typically down to 0.02 l/s),
the 15mm commissioning sets have to be able to accommodate an unusually large range of
flow rates. For this reason, four alternative valve/flow measurement device combinations
are available. Flow measurement devices are available as standard, medium
or low flow types. Double regulating valves are available as standard and low flow.
The combinations in which the Cim 737 15mm can be close coupled are shown below.

LOW FLOW COMMISSIONING SETS


CIM 737 ONLY FOR 1/2”

727L 727L 727S 727S

+ + + +

721L 721M 721M 721S

= = = =

737L 737ML 737MS 737S

It can be seen from the Valve Selection Table (Page 15), that the low flow valves and flow
measurement devices have high  values. This is because, at such low flow rates, a high
resistance is required to generate a measureable pressure differential. In practice, because
the flow rates are so small, the pressure drops across these devices are not excessive
(typically 3kPa maximum).

13
10.1 GUIDE TO VALVE SELECTION

Size pipes based on


design flow rates.

From Valve Selection Table


(see opposite page) select
line size valves to suit
design flow rates

Full open valve pressure losses:


NB
2
v–––2 Q  is sometimes
p =  2 or p = 1.296 x 10 6 – referred to as
kv “k factor”
Add full open valve
pressure losses to pipe p=pressure loss(Pa) v=velocity(m/s) =density(kg/m3) Q=flow rate (l/s)
pressure losses.

Calculate circuit
residual pressures.

Check from Valve Selection


Table that residual pressures For residual pressures greater
are within the maximum than the available range try e.g.
balancing pressures of splitting the pressure loss
the selected valves between two valves, one on
the flow, one on the return.

Valve Model Size Location Flow kvs Pressure


e.g. ref rate loss signal
(l/s) (kPa)
Create a valve schedule

14
10.2 GUIDE TO VALVE SELECTION

VALVE SELECTION TABLE

Nominal DRV, FMD or Minimum Model Maximum  kv kvs


Diameter DRV+FMD Flow Rate (l/s)* Balancing (k factor)
(mm) Pressure
(kPa)

0.015 721L - 414.6 - 0.473


FMD 0.028 721M - 92.1 - 0.976
0.055 721S - 21.9 - 1.799
- 727L 54200 Q2 65.8 1.278 -
15 DRV
- 727S 2366 Q2 7.1 3.905 -
0.015 737L 54200 Q2 480.4 0.473 0.473
DRV + FMD 0.028 737ML 54200 Q2 157.9 0.825 0.976
0.028 737MS 2366 Q2 100.4 1.035 0.976
0.055 737S 2366 Q2 29.4 1.911 1.799
FMD 0.11 721 - 10.5 - 4.057
20 DRV - 727 1250 Q2 6.6 7.281 -
DRV + FMD 0.11 737 1250 Q2 17.8 4.427 4.057
FMD 0.21 721 - 8.4 - 7.452
25 DRV - 727 1203 Q2 6.4 11.757 -
DRV + FMD 0.21 737 1203 Q2 15.0 7.684 7.452
FMD 0.46 721 - 4.8 - 16.628
32 DRV - 727 284 Q2 5.8 21.600 -
DRV + FMD 0.46 737 284 Q2 9.8 16.560 16.628
FMD 0.7 721 - 4.5 - 23.000
40 DRV - 727 203 Q2 6.1 28.461 -
DRV + FMD 0.7 737 203 Q2 10.7 21.491 23.000
FMD 1.3 721 - 2.2 - 47.351
50 DRV - 727 49 Q2 4.9 50.519 -
DRV + FMD 1.3 737 49 Q2 6.6 43.639 47.351
FMD 2.7 3721 - 1.5 - 88.7
65 DRV - 3110DRV 225 Q2 7.3 70 -
DRV + FMD 2.7 3737 225 Q2 8.5 64.754 88.7
FMD 4.1 3721 - 1.4 - 136
80 DRV - 3110DRV 81 Q2 5.6 110 -
DRV + FMD 4.1 3737 81 Q2 6.5 102 136
FMD 6.8 3721 - 1.4 - 234
100 DRV - 3110DRV 36 Q2 6.0 180 -
DRV + FMD 6.8 3737 36 Q2 7.1 166 234
FMD 10 3721 - 1.4 - 358
125 DRV - 3110DRV 13 Q2 4.5 320 -
DRV + FMD 10 3737 13 Q2 5.8 280 358
FMD 14 3721 - 1.4 - 512
150 DRV - 3110DRV 5.7 Q2 4.2 470 -
DRV + FMD 14 3737 5.7 Q2 5.4 416 512
FMD 25 3721 - 1.5 - 911
200 DRV - 3110DRV 2.1 Q2 4.7 790 -
DRV + FMD 25 3737 2.1 Q2 6.0 702 911
FMD 38 3721 - 1.6 - 1438
250 DRV - 3110DRV 0.8 Q2 4.7 1250 -
DRV + FMD 38 3737 0.8 Q2 6.2 1089 1438
FMD 54 3721 - 1.6 - 2057
300 DRV - 3110DRV 0.4 Q2 4.6 1800 -
DRV + FMD 54 3737 0.4 Q2 6.1 1569 2057

DRV Double Regulating Valve FMD Flow Measurement Device Q Flow rate (l/s)
* Flow rates required to generate a minimum 1 kPa loss signal across the FMD.

15
10.3 GUIDE TO VALVE SELECTION

100
80
CIM 727 60
50
40
30

20
Pressure Loss – ∆P [kPa]

10
8
6

OW
5


FL

1/2
4


3/4

/4
OW

/2

2”
1”

1”1
1”1
3 ”L
1/2

1
0.8
0.6
0.5
0.4
0.3

0.2

0.1
0.004 0.006 0.008 0.01 0.02 0.04 0.06 0.08 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.6 0.8 1 2 3 4 6 8 10 20

Flow rate – Q [l/s]

Recommended operating range of 727 double regulating valves.


100
80
CIM 60
3110 DRV 50
40
30

20
0

0
65

80

10

12

15

20

25

30
DN

DN

DN

DN

DN

DN

DN

DN
Pressure Loss – ∆P [kPa]

10
8
6
5
4
3

1
0.8
0.6
0.5
0.4
0.3

0.2

0.1
0.4 0.6 0.8 1 2 4 6 8 10 20 30 40 60 80 100 200 300 400 600 800 1000 2000

Flow rate – Q [l/s]


Recommended operating range of 3110 DRV double regulating valves.

16
10.4 GUIDE TO VALVE SELECTION

100
80
CIM 721 60
50
40
30

20
Pressure Loss Signal – ∆P [kPa]

10
8

628
000
76

99
73

57

351
52
0.9

1.7
6 0.4

16.
23.
4.0

7.4

47.
s=

s=
s=
5

s=
s=
s=

s=

s=
Kv

Kv
Kv

Kv
Kv
Kv

Kv

Kv
2”
3


4”

1/4
1/2
1/2
1/2

–1”
1/

–2”
–3/

–1”
–1”
M–

S–
L–

721
2

721
721
721

721
721

721
721
1
0.8
0.6
0.5
0.4
0.3
kvs  P
0.2
Q=
36

0.1
0.004 0.006 0.008 0.01 0.02 0.04 0.06 0.08 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.6 0.8 1 2 3 4 6 8 10 20

Flow rate – Q [l/s]


Pressure signal graphs for 721 flow measurement devices at DN 1/2 to DN 2”.
100
80
CIM 3721 60
50
40
30

20
Pressure Loss Signal – ∆P [kPa]

10
0

0
.00

.00

.00

.00
.00

8.0

7.0

8
70

234

358

512

911
88.

136

143

205

6
s=

s=

s=

s=

s=
s=

s=

s=

5
Kv

Kv

Kv

Kv

Kv
Kv

Kv

Kv

4
5

00

25

50

00

3
0

50

00
N6

N8

N1

N1

N1

N2

N2

N3
1–D

1–D

1–D

1–D

1–D

1–D

1–D

1–D

2
372

372

372

372

372

372

372

372

1
0.8
0.6
0.5
0.4
0.3
kvs  P
0.2 Q=
36
0.1
0.4 0.6 0.8 1 2 4 6 8 10 20 30 40 60 80 100 200 300 400 600 800 1000 2000

Flow rate – Q [l/s]


Pressure signal graphs for 3721 flow measurement devices at DN 65 to DN 300.

17
11.1 PROPORTIONAL BALANCING OF FLOW RATES

PROCEDURE

Consider a pipe circuit branch serving several sub-branches. In an unbalanced condition


the water entering the branch will distribute itself between them, favouring those with the
lowest resistances. Therefore, to ensure that each sub-branch receives its correct design
flow rate, the flows need to be balanced using the installed regulating valves and flow
measurement devices.

Starting at system extremities (typically branches serving terminal units):

1. Ensure that the total flow rate entering the branch is between 110% - 120% of the
design flow rate. It may be necessary to close down other branches to achieve this.

2. Measure the flow rates through each sub-branch. For each sub-branch calculate the
% design flow rate:

Pmeasured
% design flow rate =
Pdesign

If the signals at any of the installed flow measurement devices are below the
measurement range of the device, further increase the flow rate entering the branch by
closing down adjacent branches.

3. Identify the index sub-branch. This will be the one with the lowest % design flow
rate. Usually, but not always, this will be the end sub-branch (furthest from the
pump) e.g. Terminal 5 in the above schematic.

If the end sub-branch is not the index, then close its regulating valve until its
% design flow rate is approximately 10% less than that at the true index
(so that the end sub-branch becomes an artificial index). This needs to be done
whilst simultaneously measuring the flow at the true index, since its flow rate will
change as the end branch is adjusted. Hence, two operatives each with
manometers and 2-way radios will speed this exercise.

18
11.2 PROPORTIONAL BALANCING OF FLOW RATES

4. Connect a manometer to the end sub-branch flow measurement device. Starting


at the nearest upstream sub-branch (e.g. terminal 4 in the schematic) and working
back towards the furthest upstream sub-branch, adjust each sub-branch regulating
valve such that its % design flow rate becomes equal to that at the end sub-branch.
This needs to be done whilst simultaneously measuring the flow at the end sub-
branch, since its flow rate will change as upstream valves are adjusted. Hence, two
persons each with manometers and 2-way radios will speed this exercise.

5. Having achieved equal % design flow rates for each of the sub-branches, the sub-
circuit flow rates are now balanced. This balance cannot be disturbed by the
adjustment of upstream valves. Hence, upstream branches can be balanced in exactly
the same way.

6. Once the entire system has been balanced, adjust the flow from the pump to 110%
of the total design flow rate for the system. All branches and sub-branches should
now have flow rates close to their 100% design values.

For a more detailed description of the balancing procedure complete with a worked example,
reference should be made to the Cimberio Commissioning Guide.

An alternative to the proportional balancing procedure described above is the so-called


"compensated method" whereby the flow rate at the furthest sub-branch is regularly
returned to its design value by adjusting the main branch valve. Systems with fixed orifice
commissioning sets can be balanced using the compensated method of balancing, although
we believe the compensated method has the following disadvantages:

• A remote indicating manometer is required so that the commissioning specialist at


the main branch valve can observe the flow changes at the end sub-branch.

• Where the end sub-branch is a long way from the main branch valve, (outside the
range of a remote indicating manometer) three persons with radios would be
required for balancing.

19
12 MEASURING EQUIPMENT

FLOW MEASUREMENT INSTRUMENTS

By measuring the pressure differential across a fixed resistance (such as an orifice plate)
the flow rate through a pipe can be determined utilising the square law relationship
between pressure differential and flow rate. Experience has shown that this method of
determining flow rate is the most convenient for use in the building services industry.

FLUOROCARBON MANOMETER

The instrument commonly used for measuring pressure


differential is the manometer. Manometers
traditionally take the form of a U tube arrangement
whereby the pressure differential being measured is used
to displace a fluid of known density, typically mercury or
a fluorocarbon. The height of column displaced is
directly proportional to the pressure differential.
Fluorocarbon manometers are typically used to measure
pressure differentials in the range 1-4.7 kPa whereas
mercury manometers are capable of measuring pressure
differentials in the range 1-60kPa. In recent years the use
of mercury manometers has declined due to the safety
concerns surrounding the handling of mercury on
construction sites.

DIGITAL MANOMETER

A digital differential pressure and flow test set is an electronic


pressure measuring device which is programmed to enable the direct
reading of differential pressure and flow. In addition, the regulating
valve manufacturer’s kv value can be keyed into the instrument so
that the flow rate can be read direct from the manometer thereby
avoiding the need to refer to a pressure loss graph. Although
generally reliable, digital manometers do need to be treated
with care and regularly calibrated to ensure that accuracy
is maintained.

20
13.1 TERMINOLOGY

DOUBLE REGULATING VALVE

Double regulating valves (DRVs) are so called because they serve the double function of flow
regulation and isolation. Once set in their regulated position, they can be locked so that when
closed and re-opened, they cannot be opened beyond their set position.

FLOW MEASUREMENT DEVICE

Flow measurement devices enable flow rate to be measured for the purposes of achieving and
proving a flow balance. Fixed orifices provide a highly accurate means of flow
measurement in pipe systems. By measuring the pressure differential across an orifice,
this can be equated to flow rate using the manufacturer’s published kvs value.

CLOSE COUPLED COMMISSIONING SET

This term simply refers to the close coupling of regulating valves to orifice type flow
measurement devices. The orifice is screwed into the inlet side of the regulating valve.

INDEX CIRCUIT

This is the circuit which, with the system in an unbalanced state, exhibits the greatest
resistance to flow. It can be identified by calculation as the circuit with the highest pressure
loss around it when design flow rates are assumed. On site it can be identified by flow
measurement; it will be the circuit for which the ratio of measured flow rate to design flow
rate is lowest.

All systems will have a single overall index circuit against which pump pressure is calculated.
Furthermore, for any branch serving sub-branches, there will be an index sub-branch.
Similarly, each sub-branch may serve a number of terminal branches, one of which will be the
index terminal.

If all terminal branches are of equal resistance, the main system index circuit is likely to be
from the pump to the most remote terminal, since this circuit has the longest pipe lengths.
Similarly, sub-branch index circuits are likely to be from the start of the sub-branch to the most
remote terminal unit they serve. However, if terminal branch resistances vary then
the system index and branch indexes will not necessarily coincide with the most remote
terminals. The location of each index will then depend on which circuit has the highest
combination of pipe and terminal branch pressure losses.

As the circuit starting with the highest resistance, there is no need to regulate flow at an
index. At the end of the balancing process, the index circuit should always have a fully open
regulating valve.

21
13.2 TERMINOLOGY

RESIDUAL PRESSURE

The residual pressure for a particular circuit is the difference between the pressure available
across that circuit, and the pressure required to achieve the design flow rate. This residual, or
excess pressure, has to be dissipated in some way, and this is usually achieved by adding
resistance to the circuit in the form of a regulating valve.

A circuit’s residual pressure is, therefore, critical for sizing regulating valves. A valve’s
resistance obviously increases as it is closed, but there is a limit to how much resistance it can
generate. As a rule of thumb, if a valve is closed beyond its 25% open position it may become
sensitive to air bubbles or prone to blockage from circulating debris.

Valve selection must therefore include a check to ensure that predicted residual pressures are
within the operating limits of the selected regulating valve. Fortunately, many pipe sizing
programs calculate residual pressures automatically. These values can then be checked against
the operating range of the selected valve.

22
13.3 TERMINOLOGY

KV

The kv value represents the flow rate through a fully open valve at a temperature
between 5degC and 40degC, and measured in cubic metres per hour that will induce a
pressure loss of 1bar. Hence the kv value is effectively a measure of the valve’s resistance.
Where a valve is close coupled to a flow measurement device, the kv value represents the
resistance across the fully open valve and flow measurement device combined.

Using SI units, the pressure drop across a fully open valve can be calculated from the
equation:
2
Q
p = 1.296 x 10 6 – where Q = flow rate in l/s, and p = pressure loss in Pa
kv

kv values express resistance as an inverse - in other words the greater the valve’s
resistance the smaller its kv value. Design engineers are more used to thinking of
resistance in terms of the pressure loss coefficient  (zeta) sometimes also referred to
as a "k factor". The pressure loss through any fitting or component can be calculated
from the equation:

v2
p =  –––
2

where  = fluid density in kg/m3, v = velocity in m/s and p = pressure loss in Pa.

The higher the loss coefficient, the greater the resistance of the fitting.
For convenience, the valve selection charts in this guide express fully open valve
resistances in terms of both kv values and pressure loss coefficients

KVS

This term is usually applied to the pressure loss between the tappings on a flow
measurement device. The "s" indicates "signal" since it relates to the pressure loss signal
measured by a commissioning specialist. For a given flow measurement device with a
known kvs value the commissioning specialist can calculate flow rate from the pressure
loss signal using the following equation:

kvs  P
Q= where Q = flow rate in l/s, and P = pressure loss in kPa
36
However, the pressure loss between the tappings is not the same as the overall
pressure loss across the device. Because there is an increase in static pressure
downstream of the orifice, the overall pressure loss is usually less than the measured
pressure loss across the tappings. To determine the pressure loss across one of
our flow measurement devices, use the pressure loss coefficient  (zeta) from the
Valve Selection Table (Page 13).

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