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The orifice meter consists of a flat orifice plate with a circular hole drilled in it. There is a pressure tap upstream from the orifice plate and another just downstream. There are in general three methods of placing the taps. The coefficient of the meter depends upon the position of taps.

With an orifice plate, the fluid flow is measured through the difference in pressure from the upstream side to the downstream side of a partially obstructed pipe. The plate obstructing the flow offers a precisely measured obstruction that narrows the pipe and forces the flowing fluid to constrict.

The orifice plates are simple, cheap and can be delivered for almost any application in any material.

The orifice plates TurnDown Rates fare less than 5:1. They have a poor accuracy are at low flow rates. A high accuracy depend on an orifice plate in good shape, with a sharp edge to the upstream side. Orifice wear reduces the accuracy.