Ultrasonic flowmeters used in custody transfer are growing at a faster rate than any other flowmeter type available today, according to IMS Research. Despite the rapid growth, differential-pressure flowmeters still account for the largest share of a custody-transfer market that IMS Research estimates to be worth some $500 million in 2010.

Those involved with custody-transfer flow measurement today, a transaction involving transporting physical substance from one operator to another, have a wide choice of technologies and products at their disposal. Newer flowmeter technologies, such as Coriolis and ultrasonic, offer increased reliability, reduced pressure drop, and high accuracy, IMS says. At the same time, IMS says suppliers are making improvements in the performance of meters using more established technologies. Turbine flowmeters, for example, are being made with stronger bearings, offering longer life.

“Differential-pressure (DP) flowmeters appear to be holding their own,” said Paul Everett, research director at IMS Research, in a prepared statement. “DP flowmeters still have the largest installed base of any type of flowmeter, and customers appreciate the meters versatility to measure liquid, gas and steam flows. Manufacturers have been very diligent in researching and developing technological improvements in their products.”

In its latest flowmeter report, IMS Research confirms Coriolis flowmeters steady hold on the custody-transfer market. In addition, several European standards organizations include Coriolis meters on their list of meters approved for custody transfer. IMS Research says there is also a significant trend occurring in the production and use of ultrasonic flowmeters for custody transfer.

Analysis of the flowmeter market is available from the 2nd edition of IMS Research’s recently released World Flowmeter report available at imsresearch.com.