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An incremental method to assess the linearity of gas flowmeters: application to Fleisch pneumotachographs.

Authors
Type
Published Article
Journal
The European respiratory journal
Publication Date
Volume
1
Issue
7
Pages
661–665
Identifiers
PMID: 2972559
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

A new method of studying the linearity of gas flowmeters was tested on different models of Fleisch pneumotachographs. The method applies a steady flow to the test flowmeter, which is increased in a stepwise manner by adding a constant flow-increment. This is achieved using two flow sources in parallel. The method does not require any reference flow channel and may be implemented with standard laboratory equipment. Using this method, the gain of Fleisch pneumotachographs, whatever their size, decreased by about 2-3% from low flows to about 40% of their nominal full scale (FS), and then increased almost linearly with increasing flow. The error was 8-13% at 200% FS. The following equation was devised to correct the data at high flow: Vc = Vt (1-K (Vt-S] where Vc and Vt are the corrected and measured flow respectively, K a gain correction factor and S a flow threshold below which no correction is needed. Applying this correction with suitable coefficients, the maximal error was below 3% from 0-200% FS.

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