Optimisation of Pulsed Ultrasonic Velocimetry system and transducer technology for industrial applications

Ultrasonics. 2013 Feb;53(2):459-69. doi: 10.1016/j.ultras.2012.08.014. Epub 2012 Sep 16.


Pulsed Ultrasonic Velocimetry, commonly referred to as Ultrasonic Velocity Profiling (UVP) in research and engineering applications, is both a method and a device to measure an instantaneous one-dimensional velocity profile in opaque fluids along a measurement axis by using Doppler echography. Studies have suggested that the accuracy of the measured velocity gradient close to wall interfaces need to be improved. The reason for this is due to distortion caused by cavities situated in front of ultrasonic transducers, measurement volumes overlapping wall interfaces, refraction of the ultrasonic wave as well as sound velocity variations (Doppler angle changes). In order to increase the accuracy of velocity data close to wall interfaces and solve previous problems a specially designed delay line transducer was acoustically characterised and evaluated. Velocity profiles measured using the delay line transducer, were initially distorted due to the effect of finite sample volume characteristics and propagation through the delay line material boundary layers. These negative effects were overcome by measuring physical properties of the ultrasonic beam and implementing a newly developed deconvolution procedure. Furthermore, custom velocity estimation algorithms were developed, which improved the time resolution and penetration depth of the UVP system. The optimised UVP system was evaluated and compared to standard transducers in three different straight pipes (inner diameters of 16, 22.5 and 52.8mm). Velocity data obtained using the optimised UVP system showed significant improvement close to wall interfaces where the velocity gradients are high. The new transducer technology and signal processing techniques reduced previously mentioned problems and are now more suitable for industrial process monitoring and control.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't