What is a Sight Flow Indicator?

What is a sight flow indicator?

A sight flow indicator provides a window into a process pipeline that allows operators a visual means of verifying liquid flow and flow direction. Simple and low-cost, it also allows operators to observe the color, clarity, consistency, viscosity and other characteristics of process fluids.

The basic description of a sight flow indicator is a glass column or two opposing windows with a means to mount the device to a pipeline.  Bodies or heads in a tubular style are usually constructed out of a specific metal. Windows are made from special glass discs in a gasketed assembly, glass windows fused in a metal frame, or tubular glass. Occasionally polymer windows are used.

How Does a Sight Flow Indicator Work?

How does a sight flow indicator work?

A sight flow indicator gives the operator a window to observe how a process fluid moves through the pipeline.

At a basic level, how a sight flow indicator works is simple: just look through the window to observe the flow in a pipeline. Actually, there are complexities in the many types of indication and construction of the equipment. Each style of indicator works a little differently.

2019 Flow Control Innovation Awards Nominee

Vote for LumiFlo®!

Image:  LumiFlo Product Image

We’re so excited to announce that the LumiFlo® LED light has been nominated for a 2019 Flow Control Innovation Award.

TheLumiFlo LED Light is a first-to-market, exclusive patent pending LJ Star product that is designed to improve the lighting of full view sight flow indicators in process fluid lines.  It easily attaches to most inline full view sight flow indicators in process fluid lines, allowing operators to clearly see color, flow and particles moving through the sight glass in order to visually inspect product quality, clarity, viscosity and consistency.

Alexa, Buy Me Beer

Thanks to all who stopped by to see us at the recent Interphex and Craft Brewing shows.  We hope you enjoyed talking to our process observation experts and learned a few things about our products, as well.

Webcast: How to Select and Maintain Sight Glasses for Chemical and Pharmaceutical Applications

Improperly specified, installed or maintained sight glasses can represent the weakest link in a processing system.  The wrong glass or materials used will limit observation, require extra maintenance and replacements, and even fail under pressure with catastrophic results – since glass can fracture at 5 miles/second!

Before you choose your next sight glass, there are a variety of key specifications and glass material questions to answer, based on application temperature, how any chemicals used react to the glass, and the level of pressure involved. ​And, you’ll want to understand the differences between true borosilicate glass – its performance and certifications – compared to others that may be suggested as equivalent alternatives.

Watch this tutorial webcast from the process engineers at LJ Star to see how others are specifying and maintaining sight glass installations in their facilities.

Webcast: Best Practices in the Selection and Use of Sanitary Clamps

Keeping a Firm Grip on Sanitary Clamp Safety

For pharmaceutical and biotech companies, maintaining sterile process control is an ever-increasing challenge – one that can lead to cross-contamination, short term loss of product, long term drug shortages, lawsuits and even loss of life should sterile process be breached.

Sanitary clamps are crucial to keeping processing systems clean while allowing maintenance personnel to disconnect and reconnect piping quickly and securely. However, as simple as that sounds, making secure and sanitary process system connections consistently requires maintenance personnel to have the right clamps, the right tools, and the right training. A connection that isn’t properly secured can call the hygienic integrity of the whole processing system into question.

In addition to the risk of contamination due to manufacturing equipment issues, improper handling practices can be equally problematic. Pressure, temperature, and caustic process materials are all potential workplace hazards that can injure. When it comes to process equipment, maintenance and training are critical to ensuring reliability and safety.

This webcast, How to follow Sanitary Clamp Best Practices, shows how to help maintain sterile process control and offset the risk of improper connections from clamps, gaskets and ferrules by educating pharmaceutical and biotech workers on proper clamp assembly, inspection, installation and maintenance.

 

Webcast: The Top Three Steps to Ensuring Sight Glass Safety

Keeping an Eye on Sight Glass Safety

If improperly specified, installed or maintained, sight glasses can be the weakest link in a processing system because they can limit observation capabilities, require frequent maintenance or replacement, or make it difficult to illuminate the vessel in which they’re installed.

 

Additionally, sight glasses can fail, endangering workers and causing extensive destruction and system downtime. When glass fails under pressure, it is sudden and catastrophic. Glass can fracture at 5 miles per second which can cause irreputable damage to both your workers and your facility.

 

In systems made primarily of metal, such as pressure vessels or process piping runs, the weak spots are generally sealing joints and glass.  Typically, failure of an industrial sight glass on a piece of equipment, or within a piping system, will halt the entire manufacturing process and force downtime until the equipment can be repaired or replaced.

 

 In this webcast, How To Ensure Sight Glass Safety, you’ll learn how to choose the right sight glass for the application and applicable standards, how to install the sight glass correctly and how to routinely and carefully maintain sight glasses.

HEX NUT DESIGN IMPROVEMENT

In our efforts to continually improve our products we are introducing a change to the Domed Hexagon Nut used to tighten our range of clamps. These nuts are used to replace the Wing Nut in certain applications. The existing Domed Hexagon Nut, we currently supply, will become obsolete to be replaced by the new Hexagon Flat Nut.

The Hexagon Flat Nut has the following advantages over the Domed Hexagon Nut:

The contact point of the hexagon flat nut is only on the face of the clamp segment. This means the force is applied solely to a plane parallel to the nut face. This has benefits over the domed hexagon nut which has a contact point inside the legs of the clamp segment. In addition to the above, galling tends to be reduced as the thread at the tip of the nut is not deformed. This often results in a tighter thread which has been seen on multiple clamps. The hexagon flat nut also maintains the perpendicularity of the thread to the clamp body. This reduces the off collinear misalignment of the thread further reducing the tendency to gall.

You can read more on the entire LJ Star line of Sanitary Clamps, or contact us  for a quote and more information on product specs and performance.

 

Surface Finish and 3-D Printing Are Big Topics at Recent BPE Meetings

Aarash Navabi, CPIP, Director of Research + Development, Research Dynamics, Massachusetts Division of L.J. Star, participates on several critical ASME Bioprocessing Equipment (BPE) Committees, the Surface Finish Subcommittee, the Polymers Subcommittee and is leading another Task Group for BPE. At meetings held in San Diego, California in May 2018, Aarash reported on a variety of committee discussions and decisions that drive the processing industry.

ASME Committee Updates Specs on Hygienic Clamp Unions

Gabe Montgomery, Engineering Manager, Tank Components Industries, an L.J. Star subsidiary located in Springfield, Missouri, is one of several L. J. Star engineers to serve on important ASME Bioprocessing Equipment (BPE) Committees. His work on the committee is part of the company’s contribution to advancing the technologies that shape our industry and to keep our customers informed on changes in the field. BPE held several meetings in San Diego, California in May 2018, and Gabe reports back on what he heard: