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Title: Low Power Flow Computers
Author: Don W. Griffies
Source: 2002 American School of Gas Measurement Technology
Year Published: 2002
Abstract: Flow computers, like the computer industry, have been changing rapidly over the past few years. Faster, more powerful microprocessors, higher quality batteries and solar panels, improved electronics and new methods of remote communication now make it possible to automate field production and pipeline systems primarily using low power flow computers as the core hardware. Low power flow computers were originally designed to replace mechanical charts used in custody transfer gas measurement. They now are being used in whole scale SCADA systems often performing multi-tube and tube switching operations, flow control, tank monitoring, compressor monitoring, artificial lift and total MMBTU calculation. Software packages, both man machine interface and central data management and communication programs, have become powerful efficient tools for operating, controlling and managing field production and pipeline systems. These systems are often integrated with sophisticated computer graphics programs to simplify monitoring and control operations throughout the computer networks. Advances in remote data communication enable companies to gain access to these sites to get current status, collect historical data and perform a host of control functions from the comfort of a field or home office.