Alicat Brings Mass Flow Control to Industrial Modbus Networks

Mass flow meters and controllers now available with Modbus-RTU communications protocol
Tucson, Arizona (March 27, 2014) – Alicat Scientific, Inc. now offers Modbus-RTU communications protocol as an option on all of its mass flow meters, mass flow controllers and pressure controllers. Modbus-RTU is an enduring industrial networking standard that allows communication among hundreds of devices on a single network.

Alicat Modbus

Alicat mass flow meters and controllers now available with Modbus-RTU communications protocol

Alicat’s new Modbus implementation brings the company’s signature laminar differential pressure-based measurement and 50-ms proportional control speeds to existing industrial Modbus-RTU networks. The Modbus protocol outputs all of the mass flow or pressure controller’s data, including: mass flow, volumetric flow, pressure, temperature, selected gas calibration, setpoint and totalized flow. Users may send commanded setpoints, gas selections and register changes to the Alicat meter or controller using a Modbus-enabled computer of PLC.

This Modbus offering may be paired with either Alicat’s standard multi-drop RS-232 connectivity or the optional RS-485 for greater data integrity over longer distances. Physical connector choices include 8-pin mini-DIN, 9-pin D-sub and 15-pin D-sub, which are available in a variety of pinout configurations for easy drop-in replacement of older industrial units. All Alicat instruments are backed by NIST-traceable calibration, comprehensive technical support and a lifetime warranty.

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Alicat Develops First Bidirectional Flow and Pressure Controller

MCD-Series dual-valve mass flow controllers manage flow both into and out of a process
Tucson, Arizona (December 11, 2013) – Alicat Scientific, Inc.’s new MCD-Series Bidirectional Mass Flow and Pressure Controllers precisely and rapidly control mass flow rate, volumetric flow rate and absolute pressure of gases in two flow directions. This flexible dual-valve design is the first of its kind, accommodating demanding process control requirements in gas analysis, leak testing and environmental applications.

Alicat MCD

Alicat’s MCD-Series bidirectional mass flow controllers manage multiple process parameters.

With a dedicated inlet valve and a dedicated exhaust valve, a single MCD can control upstream and downstream flows, as well as positive pressure or backpressure in both open and closed systems. It’s ideal for processes that require bidirectional flow control and/or pressure control, as well as for pressure control in closed systems, while also monitoring mass flow. User-selectable control modes allow users to switch quickly between mass flow, volumetric flow and absolute pressure measurement and control for maximum flexibility.

Alicat’s patented, internally compensated laminar differential pressure measurement yields linear results over a very wide flow range. The resulting volumetric and mass flow data is fully compensated for changes in pressure and temperature and corrected for the user’s standard temperature and pressure (STP). Available 0.4% accuracy +0.2% full-scale repeatability and less than 100ms control response times ensure top performance of gas flow processes.

The MCD-Series’ large integrated display allows users to access setpoint control and PID valve tuning without need for a computer. While it can operate as a standalone device, it also comes with both analog and RS-232 digital communications to integrate easily into process control instrumentation. It comes with 30 field selectable calibrations, and is available in full-scale mass flow rates from -0.5/+0.5 sccm to -3000/+3000 slpm. All units are backed by NIST-traceable calibration, comprehensive technical support, and a lifetime warranty.

To learn more about Alicat’s MCD-Series Bidirectional Mass Flow Control, visit alicat.com/mcd, or call +1 520 290-6060. To see an “Ask Alicat” video featuring the MCD, visit http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6jPHKCqh-iw.

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Alicat Develops First Bidirectional Flow and Pressure Controller

MCD-Series dual-valve mass flow controllers increase experimental possibilities
Tucson, Arizona (December 11, 2013) – Alicat Scientific, Inc.’s new MCD-Series Bidirectional Mass Flow and Pressure Controllers precisely and rapidly control mass flow rate, volumetric flow rate and absolute pressure of gases in two flow directions. This flexible dual-valve design is the first of its kind, allowing researchers to replace multiple dedicated instruments and make rapid changes to experimental setups.

Alicat MCD

Alicat’s MCD-Series bidirectional mass flow controllers replace multiple instruments for laboratory use.

User-selectable control modes allow users to switch quickly between mass flow, volumetric flow and absolute pressure measurement and control for maximum flexibility in laboratory use. With a dedicated inlet valve and a dedicated exhaust valve, a single MCD can control upstream and downstream flows, as well as positive pressure or backpressure in both open and closed systems. As a universal control element, it can be used to monitor or control a number of parameter combinations, making it useful in a variety of configurations.

Alicat’s patented, internally compensated laminar differential pressure measurement yields linear results over a very wide flow range. The resulting volumetric and mass flow data is fully compensated for changes in pressure and temperature and corrected for the user’s standard temperature and pressure (STP). Available 0.4% accuracy +0.2% full-scale repeatability and less than 100ms control response times ensure top performance of gas flow processes.

The MCD-Series’ large integrated display allows users to access setpoint control and PID valve tuning without need for a computer. It comes with 30 field selectable calibrations, and is available in full-scale mass flow rates from -0.5/+0.5 sccm to -3000/+3000 slpm. All units are backed by NIST-traceable calibration, comprehensive technical support, and a lifetime warranty.

To see an “Ask Alicat” video featuring the MCD, visit http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6jPHKCqh-iw.

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Ultra-Low Pressure Drop Flow Meters and Controllers Conserve Expensive Gases

Whisper series from Alicat have industry’s lowest differential pressure ranges
Tucson, Arizona (April 16, 2013) – Alicat Scientific, Inc.’s new line of mass flow meters and controllers overcome the challenges of low pressure systems to deliver accurate metering and control. The Whisper series saves time and money in semi-conductor and other process industries with systems using very low pressure differentials or exotic gases.

Alicat Whisper Flow Meter

Alicat’s Whisper series saves time and money in systems using very low pressure differentials or exotic gases.

All Alicat meters and controllers are based on its patented laminar flow technology, resulting in fast and accurate responses. The Whisper series also incorporates a very low differential pressure sensor and redesigned flow body to achieve a differential pressure range of .01PSID to 2.0PSID, depending on flow rate and configuration. Prior to Whisper series instruments, users relied on larger pumps or supply sources, higher feed pressures, or the use of more bottled gas to overcome pressure drop requirements imposed by mass flow instrumentation.

Compatible with 30 field selectable gases and gas mixes, Whisper flow meters and controllers can operate as standalone devices or integrate easily into process control instrumentation. In addition to mass flow, a single device quickly and accurately measures pressure, temperature and volumetric flow. For applications requiring precision gas flow control, Whisper series mass flow controllers deliver accurate flow regulation of gases with the ability to respond to upstream gas flow changes, attaining and maintaining flow setpoints in less than 100ms.

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Gas Mixing Software Automates Blending of Constituent Gases

Alicat Flow Vision MX simplifies setup, minimizes error potential 
Tucson, Arizona (January 21, 2013) – Alicat Scientific’s new software platform, Flow Vision MX, computerizes control of gas mixing, saving time and reducing error. The simple platform configures up to six Alicat mass flow controllers into a single gas mixing station with an easy to follow visual set up. 

Alicat Flow Vision MX simplifies setup in blending constituent gases.

Alicat Flow Vision MX simplifies setup in blending constituent gases.

An intuitive graphical user interface, including a set up wizard, guides users through programming gas mixture parameters. The software prohibits mixtures below 100 percent, eliminating calculation errors and wasted gas costs. Gas blend settings can be saved on the system for future use, making production changeovers quick and error free.

Flow Vision MX’s data logging lets users review mixture accuracy and performance. Percentages for the total mixture, a single controller or multiple controllers are quickly and easily adjusted with simple sliders. With minimal system requirements, the software runs efficiently on even older computers. It support new mixing systems based on Alicat controllers and can be used to upgrade existing manual ones, saving time and money.

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Alicat Scientific Adds USB Convenience to Flow Meter Communication Module

Monitor and control up to nine Alicat devices from a single computer
Tucson, Arizona (July 24, 2012) – Alicat Scientific, Inc. now offers its BB9 Communication Module in a USB model. The BB9-USB replaces the standard RS-232 serial connection, providing a direct computer connection for monitoring and control of Alicat Flow devices.

Alicat's USB-99 monitors and controls up to nine Alicat devices from a single computer.

Alicat's USB-99 monitors and controls up to nine Alicat devices from a single computer.

The BB9 joins up to nine Alicat flow and pressure devices to a single computer for independent monitoring and operation. This remote monitoring saves time and money, especially in flow instrument installations where devices are a long distance from the control site. The BB9 will also distribute power to connected Alicat devices. In installations with more than nine Alicat flow devices, multiple BB9s can control up to 26 Alicat devices.

Alicat flow and pressure devices connect to the BB9-USB via Alicat’s eight pin mini din connector and DC-62 cables. The BB9-USB box then plugs into most computers via standard USB port. The BB9’s light, yet rugged, composite chassis can be mounted in almost any location, in any orientation.

With the industry’s highest turndown ratio, Alicat’s mass flow meters quickly and accurately measure pressure, as well as temperature, volumetric, and mass flow. Devices come pre-calibrated (NIST traceable) for Air, Hydrogen, Helium, and Argon as well as 16 other gases and 10 gas mixes.

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Alicat Scientific Achieves 200:1 Turndown Ratio

Industry best enables wide flow range with fewer installed instruments
Tucson, Arizona (May 11, 2012) – Alicat Scientific, Inc. now offers its Mass Flow Meters and Mass Flow Controllers with the industry’s highest turndown ratio-200:1-as standard. With this wide sensitivity range, original equipment manufacturers and systems integrators can achieve cost and space savings without sacrificing performance.

Alicat Scientific's Mass Flow Meters and Mass Flow Controllers have the industry’s highest turndown ratio-200:1.

Alicat Scientific's Mass Flow Meters and Mass Flow Controllers have the industry’s highest turndown ratio-200:1.

Alicat meters and controllers measure mass flow using differential pressure and a patented laminar flow technology, resulting in fast response with a rugged design. The turndown ratio of a flow instrument refers to the ratio of minimum flow to full scale flow that the unit can accurately measure. While the industry standard for this performance parameter is 100:1 or less, Alicat’s new 200:1 ratio covers a wider flow range with fewer pieces of instrumentation. Use of a single multi-range flow meter reduces instrument cost and saves valuable component space inside equipment cabinets.

Alicat’s mass flow meters quickly and accurately measure pressure, temperature and volumetric flow in addition to mass flow. For applications requiring precision gas flow control, Alicat’s mass flow controllers deliver accurate flow regulation of gases with the ability to respond to upstream gas flow changes, attaining and maintaining flow setpoints in less than 100ms.

Devices come pre-calibrated (NIST traceable) for Air, Hydrogen, Helium, and Argon as well as 16 other gases and 10 gas mixes. With an integrated digital display, Alicat’s flow meters and controllers can operate simply as a standalone device. For more complex operation, the product also interfaces with most process control software without requiring any additional equipment or controllers, a simple to install and cost effective solution.

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Low-Power Portable MB Series Flow Meters from Alicat Scientific

Battery power ideal for fieldwork and in-house testing applications
Tucson, Arizona (March 14, 2012) – Alicat Scientific’s MB series portable mass flow and liquid flow meters utilize a 9 volt battery pack to make metering gas flow, pressure, or water flow in the field and lab convenient and reliable.

Alicat Scientific’s MB series portable mass flow and liquid flow meter.

Alicat Scientific’s MB series portable mass flow and liquid flow meter.

With eight to ten hours of battery life, the MB series mass flow meters quickly and accurately measure pressure, temperature and volumetric flow in addition to mass flow. The portable meters can be used to easily verify proper operation of flow meters and flow controllers from any manufacturer, instantly take measurements in the field, and to quickly test for leaks in multiple processes or systems. Powered by a standard 9 volt battery, the lightweight MB series meters fit easily into a pocket or work bag.

In permanent installation applications, the MB units may also be hardwired or wall powered, with the battery serving as a backup during power loss to maintain critical operations monitoring.

Alicat’s patented laminar flow differential pressure technology delivers highly accurate results with a much faster response time than that of competing technologies. Devices come pre-calibrated (NIST traceable) for Air, Hydrogen, Helium, and Argon as well as 16 other gases and 10 gas mixes.

The integrated digital display enables the MB series to operate simply as a standalone device.  Users can change the configuration of the meter without the need for computers, complicated software or scripts.

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Alicat Mass Flow Controllers for Food and Beverage Processing

Precise flow control maintains process integrity and product quality
Tucson, Arizona (November 17, 2011) – Alicat Scientific’s MFC series Mass Flow Controllers provide precision gas flow control for a variety of food and beverage processes. The units accurately regulate flow of process gases, attaining and maintaining flow setpoints in less than 100ms. Alicat’s MFC series can be used in sparging, blanketing, filling and injection processes in food and beverage production.

Alicat’s MFC series can be used in sparging, blanketing, filling and injection processes in food and beverage production.

Alicat’s MFC series can be used in sparging, blanketing, filling and injection processes in food and beverage production.

The MFC series units are calibrated for 30 inert gases and a number of corrosive gases to quickly and accurately measure pressure, temperature and volumetric flow in addition to mass flow. Alicat’s patented laminar flow differential pressure technology delivers highly accurate results with a much faster response time than that of competing technologies. The MFC has a response time of less than 10ms and a control time of 100ms, making it one of the fastest naturally responding mass flow controllers on the market today.

Successful food and beverage MFC installations include:

  • Air sparging in ice cream production and CO2 sparging for pH control in beverages
  • N2 blanketing in winemaking
  • Inert gas filling in meat packaging
  • Flow control of N2O for whip cream production
  • Corrosive and carrier gas handling in flavor science and spice production

Simple to install and cost effective, the MFC operates simply as a stand-alone device. Its integrated digital display enables users to change the configuration of the meter without the need for computers, complicated software or scripts. For more complex operation, the MFC also interfaces with most process control software without requiring any additional equipment or controllers. The dependable units deliver NIST traceable calibrations and are backed by a lifetime warranty.

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Alicat Mass Flow and Pressure Devices ATEX Approved

-X option for use in environments where ignitable gases are present
Tucson, Arizona (October 28, 2011) – Alicat Scientific, Inc. offers its Mass Flow Meters, Mass Flow Controllers, and Pressure Equipment with an ATEX approved -X option. With this ATEX rating, Alicat’s precision devices are even easier to integrate into a wide range of hazardous settings or applications, without sacrificing functionality. 

Alicat’s Mass Flow Meters, Mass Flow Controllers, and Pressure Equipment are ATEX approved.

Alicat’s Mass Flow Meters, Mass Flow Controllers, and Pressure Equipment are ATEX approved.

Alicat devices can be ordered in the ATEX approved configuration with no extension of fast 7 business day lead times. All Alicat ATEX approved mass flow devices have 30 user selectable gas calibrations installed for gases like Acetylene, Oxygen, Hydrogen, and Propane, as well as 16 other gases and 10 gas mixes. Alicat ATEX approved devices also include a NIST traceable calibration and certificate.

Other ATEX approved devices are often stripped of functionality to reduce power consumption and heat generation. Alicat devices, by design, consume very little power and generate very little heat, requiring few modifications to the Alicat ATEX device. It includes all of the benefits and features of its non-ATEX counterpart including the major functional advantage, the digital display. Users in hazardous environments reap the flexibility of having an on-board display for quick visual verification of mass flow meter or mass flow controller operation.

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