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White paper: Presented to Texas A&M Instrumentation Symposium
Page 1
Mark Menezes
Manager Pressure & PlantWeb (Americas)
Rosemount Inc.
Canassen! M" ##$1%
Centri'u(a) *ompressor+ sa'ety+ e''i*ien*y+ transmitters+ insta))ed repeata,i)ity
Centri&ugal com'ressors are wi(el) use( in te 'rocess an( oil & gas in(ustries. Correct
transmitter selection is critical &or tese a''lications in 'articular! anti*surge an( troug'ut
control. +n&ortunatel)! man) user 'ractices are base( not on ,uanti&iable engineering
meto(ologies! but on e-'erience .ali( more tan a (eca(e ago! but now obsolete. /e
ob0ecti.e is to allow te user to im'ro.e on te all*too*common 1surge*'lus*1234 rule! substituting
rigorous meto(ologies to ,uanti&) a''lication re,uirements an( s)stem 'er&ormance. /e 'a'er
will e-'lain ow transmitter 'er&ormance es'eciall) res'onse time an( installe( re'eatabilit)
a&&ects com'ressor sa&et). /en! meto(ologies an( tools will be 'resente( wic allow users to
,uickl) an( reliabl) estimate tese 'arameters! allowing te user to minimize unnecessar)
energ) cost! witout increasing sa&et) risk.
15urge4 is cause( wen te &low troug a com'ressor is (ecrease( to te 'oint tat momentar)
&low re.ersals occur. 5urge is e.i(ence( b) .ibration an( 'ulsation! an( i& uncecke( can cause
se.ere com'ressor (amage. As sown in 6igure 1! i& surge is (etecte(! te surge control s)stem
will increase &low troug te com'ressor! b) ,uickl) o'ening te blowo&& .al.e &or
en.ironmentall) benign or low .alue gases! or te recirculation .al.e &or azar(ous or .aluable
8lowo&& or
6igure 1
5urge Control
White paper: Presented to Texas A&M Instrumentation Symposium
Page 9
:.en i& surge is (etecte( ,uickl)! te relati.el) slow res'onse time o& te blowo&& or recirculation
.al.e causes te com'ressor to continue to o'erate in te surge con(ition &or some 'erio( o&
time. 6re,uent c)cling o& te control s)stem in an( out o& surge can cause out'ut 'ressure
.ariation! com'ressor wear! an( 'oor e&&icienc).
Altoug s)stems wic (etect 1inci'ient surge4 base( on eiter rising tem'erature or instabilit)
o& te &low an( 'ressure measurements a.e been (esigne(! eac must be custom*(esigne( to
a certain macine an( com'ression s)stem. Worse! tese s)stems ten( to be sa&e an( reliable
onl) o.er te range o& test con(itions.
As result! most users o'erate o&& te com'ressor;s 1surge
line4. As sown in 6igure 9! te surge line is te minimum &low necessar)! &or eac gi.en
'ressure! to a.oi( surge. Points on te surge line wic ma) o& course be a 1cur.e4 * are
t)'icall) (etermine( e-'erimentall). I& te com'ressor is o'erating sa&et) (1)! an( &low su((enl)
(ecreases! te com'ressor can mo.e into a surge con(ition (9)! unless te blowo&& .al.e is
o'ene(! an( &low increase( ($). Wile too little blowo&& can result in surge! too muc blowo&& (<)
wastes &uel! since te com'ressor energ) is .ente( into te atmos'ere. :.en i& te gas is re*
circulate(! te energ) a((e( (uring com'ression must be remo.e( b) cooling! oterwise te
com'ressor will o.ereat.
I(eall)! te user soul( o'erate as close to surge as 'ossible! witout actuall) entering surge *
most users o'erate at 1surge = -3. Wile a smaller 1-4 )iel(s better e&&icienc)! a larger 1-4
re(uces risk o& surge. Man) users assign a &i-e( .alue
to - &or e-am'le! 123. >owe.er! it
soul( be 'ossible to o'timize tis .alue base( on?
Res'onse time o& te .al.e! measurement an( control s)stem! relati.e to te surge time o&
te com'ressor
+ncertainties in te 'ressure an( (i&&erential 'ressure measurements
5tabilit) o& te com'ressor loa(ing (but tis is o&ten not known at commissioning)
/e ke) .ariables! wic soul( be consi(ere( an( ,uanti&ie( &or 'ressure transmitter selection!
res'onse time! relati.e to com'ressor surge time
'ressure an( (i&&erential 'ressure measurement uncertaint)

5urge @ine
Control @ine

6igure 9
5a&et) Margin (1-4)
White paper: Presented to Texas A&M Instrumentation Symposium
Page $
Wile transmitters an( control s)stems t)'icall) res'on( muc more ,uickl) tan .al.es! it is
essential tat te measurement (inclu(ing transmitter an( controller u'(ate) be u'(ate( at
least as &ast as te com'ressor surge rate. /e reason &or tis is illustrate( in 6igure $. I&
te measurement (oes not u'(ate as &ast as te com'ressor surges! ten surges ma) occur
between u'(ates! in wic case surge ma) 'ersist &or a se.eral c)cles be&ore being
(etecte(! 'ossibl) lea(ing to com'ressor (amage. Bnce! owe.er! te measurement is &ast
enoug! &urter re(uctions in res'onse time are not use&ul! since te o.erall s)stem
res'onse time is limite( b) te .al.e.
Ai&&erent com'ressors surge at (i&&erent rates! an( e.en te same com'ressor will surge at
(i&&erent rates in (i&&erent a''lications. Wile actual surge rates are (etermine( e-'erimentall)!
5urge time &lowrate C (ownstreamD.olume
A com'ressor wit a .er) ig &lowrate into a small .olume will surge .er) ,uickl)! wile one wit
a relati.el) lower &lowrate into a larger .olume will surge more slowl). Wile te relationsi' is
not e-act enoug to be use( &or ,uanti&)ing actual surge rates! it (oes allow users to 're(ict
weter a gi.en com'ressor soul( surge &aster in one a''lication tan in anoter.
Man) users use .en(or s'eci&ications to (etermine res'onse time. It is im'ortant to un(erstan(
tat res'onse time &or an) transmitter is (e'en(ent on te (e.ice;s u''er range. /ransmitters
(esigne( to measure .er) low 'ressures must a.e .er) sensiti.e! an( ence loose! (ia'ragms.
/ese ten( to res'onse slowl). /ransmitters (esigne( to rea( ig 'ressures a.e sti&&
(ia'ragms! an( res'on( relati.el) more ,uickl).
In a((ition to te res'onse time o& te mecanical com'onents (lag time E )! a &i-e( res'onse
time is a((e( b) te micro'rocessor o& a smart transmitter ((ea( time E t(). /is means tat! all
else being e,ual! a smart transmitter will be slower tan an analog (1(umb4) transmitter.
>owe.er! all else is rarel) e,ual! an( it is not unusual &or smart transmitters to be &aster tan
analog. 6or e-am'le! 6igure < sows res'onse times &or analog an( smart transmitters &rom a
lea(ing 'ressure transmitter su''lier. /e smart transmitter as &aster mecanical com'onents
& AP
Enter Sur(e
Measurement Update
6igure $
"ot 6ast
White paper: Presented to Texas A&M Instrumentation Symposium
Page <
(ue to &aster sensor (esign! sti&&er (ia'ragms! re(uce( .olume o& oil &ill! etc. At 'ressure ranges
were te mecanical res'onse is &ast an( te micro'rocessor u'(ate rate (ominates total
res'onse time in oter wor(s! at iger 'ressures te analog transmitter is &aster. >owe.er!
at 'ressure ranges were te mecanical res'onse is slow an( (ominates total res'onse time
in oter wor(s! at lower 'ressures te smart transmitter is &aster. /is is signi&icant! since i&
&ast enoug * smart transmitters can 'ro.i(e signi&icant im'ro.ements in re'eatabilit).
Bnce te transmitter selecte( is &ast enoug to (etect surge! a((itional im'ro.ements in
res'onse time (o not 'ro.i(e user bene&it! an( te user soul( instea( tr) to o'timize
re'eatabilit). Returning to te surge line (originall) sown in 6igure 1)! 6igure # sows te im'act
o& measurement uncertaint) in 'ressure an( (i&&erential 'ressure measurement. I& te true &low is
less tan te measure( &low! an( te error e-cee(s te sa&et) margin
(1-4 in surge = -3 control scemes)! te s)stem will une-'ecte(l) enter a surge con(ition. I&! on
te oter an(! te true &low e-cee(s te measure( &low! an( te com'ressor is o'erating close
to te surge line! te control s)stem will call &or unnecessar) blowo&&! wasting energ). Minimizing
measurement uncertaint) allows te user to o'erate closer to te surge line (smaller 1-4)! wit no
increase in surge risk! an( re(uce energ) costs &rom unnecessar) blowo&&.
Response Time
9# in>9B 9#2 in>9B 1222 in>9B $22 'si 9222 'si



$2#1 * @ag /ime
$2#1 * Aea( /ime t(

11#1 * Analog
5mart is &aster Analog is &aster

6igure <
-)o/o'' 2553
6igure #
5a&et) Margin (1-4)
White paper: Presented to Texas A&M Instrumentation Symposium
Page #
>ow can te user (etermine i& te uncertaint) will e-cee( te sa&et) marginF Consi(er! &or
e-am'le! a AP transmitter wit 12.13 re&erence accurac)4 installe( on an ori&ice 'late will te
com'lete measurement s)stem 'ro.i(e 2.13! 13 or 123 &low re'eatabilit)F /e &irst ste' is to
i(enti&) &actors tat will cause a transmitter to be less accurate an( re'eatable outsi(e o& a
laborator). 6or a AP transmitter! ke) &actors inclu(e?
Am,ient Temperature "ariation? In te .ast ma0orit) o& 1real*worl(4 &low measurements! te
transmitter can o'erate at a .er) (i&&erent ambient tem'erature tan te one at wic it was
calibrate(. In some out(oor a''lications! ambient tem'eratures can .ar) more tan #2
&rom calibration. /ese .ariations can a.e a signi&icant e&&ect! wic is easil) simulate( on
te benc blow warm air o.er a transmitter! an( watc its out'ut cange.
0i(h Stati* Line Pressures? A ig line 'ressure common in com'ressor a''lications
can signi&icantl) a&&ect te AP transmitter use( to in&er &low. /o simulate tis e&&ect on te
benc! te user soul( a''l) a small AP across a transmitter. /en! a(( se.eral un(re(
'oun(s o& a((itional static 'ressure to both si(es o& te transmitter. In teor)! te measure(
(i&&erential 'ressure soul( not cange. In realit)! it (oes.
&ri't6Sta,i)ity? /e out'ut o& an) analog com'onent will .ar) o.er time. As wit te ambient
tem'erature e&&ect (escribe( abo.e! tis can a&&ect all &low tecnologies. 8etter! smart
transmitters are more stable! re,uiring less &re,uent calibration tan ol(er! analog
transmitters or trans(ucers! witout an) sacri&ice in accurac) an( re'eatabilit).
"e-t! ,uanti&) te im'act o& tese real*worl( con(itions &or te gi.en a''lication an( transmitter o&
interest! using 'ublise( s'eci&ications. 6igure 1 sows tis at 1223 &low &or tree (i&&erent
18etter4 2.2%#3 smart transmitter
1Worse4 2.2%#3 smart transmitter
Analog transmitter
6igure G 6low :rror 6rom Ai&&erential Pressure /ransmitter
:.en toug te two 12.2%#34 transmitters a.e te same 1re&erence4 accurac)! te 1better4
transmitter is less a&&ecte( b) tese 1real*worl(4 e&&ects. "ote also tat te real*worl( e&&ects &or
all tree transmitters o.erwelm teir re&erenceClaborator) accuracies.
2 2.1 2.9 2.$ 2.< 2.# 2.G 2.% 2.H
Analog (.93 re& acc))
IWorseI .2%#3 re& acc)
I8etterI .2%#3 re& acc)
#)o/ Error at 7889 #)o/ 293
Re&erence Accurac) Ambient /em' (=C* 9#o6) @ine Pressure ($22 'sig) Ari&t (19 monts)
White paper: Presented to Texas A&M Instrumentation Symposium
Page G
Wile tese errors ma) seem small at 1223 &low! since te errors are &i-e( o.er te entire
transmitter range! an( AP &low
! small errors at 1223 * an( small (i&&erences in transmitter
accurac) * are ma(ni'ied at lower &lowrates! as seen in 6igure %.
6igure % 6low :rror 6rom Ai&&erential Pressure /ransmitter
6lowrate (sc&m) AP
:-etter: ;8<=9
IWorseI .2%#3 Analog
1222 122 2.2J3 2.913 2.G#3
%#2 #2 2.1G3 2.$H3 1.1G3
#22 9# 2.$%3 2.H#3 9.G23
>=8 G.9# 7;?@9 A;?89 78;>89
Conclusions &rom tis t)'ical a''lication?
Com'ressor &low measurements are o& greatest im'ortance at low &lows! were surge can
occur. At a &low o& 9#3! te analog transmitter contributes 789 re'eatabilit).
/e 1re&erence accurac)4 o& a transmitter is not use&ul &or 're(icting installe( re'eatabilit).
6rom 6igure 9! wen installe( te two 12.2%#34 transmitters (i&&er b) nearl) 93 at a &low o&
/e user can control some o& te &actors a&&ecting installe( re'eatabilit). 6or e-am'le! more
&re,uent calibration or calibration to a iger AP range will im'ro.e re'eatabilit). >owe.er!
bot will increase o'erating costs. An ob.ious corollar) is tat better transmitters can be
calibrate( less &re,uentl) re(ucing maintenance cost an(Cor calibrate( to a iger AP
re(ucing energ) costs )et still 'ro.i(e acce'table re'eatabilit).
/e user bene&it o& re(uce( uncertaint) is a smaller 1-4 in 1surge = -34 control s)stems. Consi(er
a gi.en com'ressor in a gi.en a''lication in wic -E123 'ro.i(es acce'table surge risk! wen
using an analog transmitter wit re'eatabilit)E123 at surge &low. I& tat transmitter is u'gra(e( to
a smart transmitter wit re'eatabilit)E1.#3! it soul( be 'ossible to o'erate wit -E#3! &or
e-am'le! wit no increase in surge risk. /is will signi&icantl) re(uce unnecessar) blowo&& an(
recirculation! an( re(uce energ) cost.
As sown in 6igure H! so&tware tools are a.ailable tat allow users to ,uanti&) installe(
re'eatabilit) &or s'eci&ic transmitters in user*(e&ine( a''lication con(itions.
White paper: Presented to Texas A&M Instrumentation Symposium
Page %
6igure H 5o&tware /ool Pre(icts Installe( Re'eatabilit)
6or best sa&et) an( e&&icienc)! users soul(?
5elect transmitters wic! un(er te a''lication con(itions s'eci&ie(! res'on( at least as
,uickl) as te com'ressor surge time. >owe.er! once te transmitters are 1&ast enoug4!
a((itional im'ro.ements (o not 'ro.i(e a((itional .alue.
Calculate an( o'timize installe( re'eatabilit)! un(er te s'eci&ie( a''lication con(itions. /is
soul( allow te user to minimize unnecessar) blowo&& an(Cor recirculation! wit no a((e(
surge risk! an(Cor to re(uce maintenance an( energ) costs.
Tota) Pro,a,)e #)o/ Error &ue to &P Transmitter
(oes not inclu(e e&&ect o& 'rocess 'ressureCtem'erature .ariation or 'rimar) element

2 * 122 in >92 Ma-imum 6low? 1222 sc&Cmin
#2 (eg 6 "ormal 6low? 9#2 sc&Cmin
$22 'sig Kalue o& 6lui(? .22J L C sc&
19 monts
Annual Kalue o& $2#1
6low :rror 6low :rror Im'ro.ementM
Rosemount $2#1C 1.<G3 L 1%9H# * MAnnual Re(uce(
Rosemount 11#15 <.<H3 L #$291 L $#%$G &low uncertaint)
Analog (t)'ical) 12.1J3 L 192#$< L 12$9<J (accurac)Cre'eatabilit))
Rosemount $2#1C .
Rosemount 11#15 5 A=<A@
Analog (t)'ical) 5 78A>?C
6low :rror
"atural 7as to 8oiler N1
AP /ransmitter &low error at normal &low (9#2 sc&Cmin)
6low error at normal &low (9#2 sc&Cmin)
6lui( C 5er.ice?
/ransmitter Calibrate( 5'an?
Ambient /em'. Kariation?
5tatic @ine Pressure?
Calibration 6re,uenc)?
AP /ransmitter
2.23 9.23 <.23 G.23 H.23 12.23 19.23
Drift (Stability) Static Press. Ambient Temp. Ref. Accuracy
White paper: Presented to Texas A&M Instrumentation Symposium
Page H
1. McMillan! 7.O.! Centrifugal and Axial Compressor Control! Instrument 5ociet) o& America!
Researc /riangle Park! "C! 1JH$.
9. 8otros! O.O.! >en(erson! P.6.! 1Ae.elo'ments in Centri&ugal Com'ressor 5urge Control A
/ecnolog) Assessment, Transactions of the ASME Journal of Turbomachinery! A'ril 1JJ<.
$. Wite! M.>.! 15urge Control &or Centri&ugal Com'ressors4! Chemical Engineering! Aec. 1JJ9.
<. Menezes! M.! 1Calculating & B'timizing Re'eatabilit) o& "atural 7as 6low Measurements4!
ipeline ! "as Journal! Pul) 9221.
#. /e /P6:.-ls s'rea(seet calculates te re'eatabilit)Cuncertaint) contribution o& te AP
transmitter un(er user*s'eci&ie( a''lication con(itions! an( is 're*loa(e( wit 'er&ormance
s'eci&ications &or a wi(e .ariet) o& transmitters &rom lea(ing su''liers. 5ee
www.Rosemount.com to obtain a co').