A multi-electrode capacitance probe for phase detection in oil-water separation processes: Design, modelling and validation

Guangtian Meng, Artur J. Jaworski, Jeremy C.S. Kimber

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

14 Citations (Scopus)


This paper focuses on the development of a multi-electrode capacitance probe for interface measurement and phase detection within industrial three-phase separators, used in oil and gas extraction and oil refining processes. The sensors are constructed using printed circuit board (PCB) technology and are embedded within stainless steel casings forming the structure of the probe. The design process was aided by the finite element solutions of the three-dimensional electrostatic problem. A number of solutions were obtained which predict the probe readings for various configurations of phases. Validation of the probe performance was performed using a combination of laboratory and industrial tests in a real scale separator, both with representative process media. A good agreement between the experiments and modelling is shown.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)881-894
Number of pages14
JournalMeasurement Science and Technology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2006
Externally publishedYes
EventAmerican Institute of Chemical Engineers Spring Meeting & 5th World Congress on Particle Technology - Orlando, United States
Duration: 23 Apr 200627 Apr 2006
https://www.aiche.org/conferences/aiche-spring-meeting-and-global-congress-on-process-safety/2006/proceeding/group/fifth-world-congress-on-particle-technology (Link to Conference Website)


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