Using an ultrasonic gas level indicator compared to manually weighing fire suppression bottles saves you time, labour and minimises risk.

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Fire Cylinder

Gaseous fire extinguishing systems are needed to protect their vital infrastructure. These fixed fire suppression systems protect important buildings against special hazards, fundamental for the safeguarding of critical facilities.

In ISO 14520 the regulations explains that the storage container contents shall be checked at least every six months as follows. : a) Liquefied gases: for halocarbon agents, if a container shows a loss of agent in quantity of more than 5 % or a loss of pressure (adjusted for temperature) of more than 10 %, it shall be refilled or replaced. b) Non-liquefied gases: for inert gas agents, pressure is an indication of agent quantity. If a container shows a loss of agent quantity or a loss of pressure (adjusted for temperature) of more than 5 %, it shall be refilled or replaced. Essentially, it is known in regulations that the gaseous systems leak and need to be maintained. Given that the gaseous systems are designed specifically to the individual need of that room, building e.t.c, a 5% loss of agent may mean that they would not fully extinguish the fire.

To go above and beyond the regulations, fire extinguishing systems must be checked for leakage. By using the ultrasonic liquid level indicator, the Portalevel ® MAX, one is able to exceed the standards and ensure that the gaseous extinguishing systems are able to extinguish in the event of the fire.

Understanding Ultrasonic Level Measurement

Quick and accurate routine ultrasonic sensor for liquid level measurement tests, can make the greatest preventative difference. Coltraco offers specialist non-invasive liquid level measurement to test the contents of fire suppression systems this is called the Portalevel® MAX Ultrasonic liquid level gauge. Coltraco works with manufacturers of the fire suppression systems to ensure that the Portalevel® MAX liquid level gauge is the appropriate tool for such systems.

Ultrasonic Level Measurement Principle

The assumptions in the installation and maintenance of gaseous extinguishing systems is that they are highly pressurised but risk leaking and discharging. ISO 14520-1:2015 aim to identify their leak identification at an interval of at least every 6 months. Traditional methods of weighing are laborious and dangerous, taking 15 minutes and two people to weigh a cylinder.

Ultrasonic Level Measurement Applications

To combat this, Coltraco Ultrasonics developed the Portalevel® MAX, an 8th generation ultrasonic level measurement tool, for identifying the contents of CO2, FM200®, NOVEC™ 1230, FE-13™, FE-25™ & FE-36™, Halon and a variety of similar liquid gaseous fire suppression agents, in just 30 seconds.

Traditional contents checking involve manual dismantling and weighing of the system, which is time-consuming, risky as it encourages development of leaks and poses dangers to the personnel involved. The ultrasonic method of level measurement is safer and quicker. The Portasteele® Calculator removes the need to manually weigh and yet able to provide weight/mass readings. With the recent Halon addition, the Portasteele® ultrasonic method for level measurement now covers the most commonly used fire suppressing agents and is able to save users even more time through exporting data digitally in a ready-to-use report format. The data reporting function in Portasteele® was also improved by adding the capability to export data into .csv format, in order to aid users in delivering reports quickly and easily, whether it is to their office or to their customers. Using ultrasonic type level measurement makes inspecting fire suppression systems quicker and easier.

What is the Level of Measurement for Weight

The Portasteele® CALCULATOR is an advanced calculator application, that converts the liquid level height of C02, NOVEC™ 1230 and FM-200® liquefied gaseous extinguishant agent readings taken on an Portalevel® MAX ultrasonic level measurement system into the agent weight/mass. The Portasteele® CALCULATOR is the first in the world to provide agent weight readings without physically weighing the fire suppression cylinders to comply with fire safety regulations. This is a safer, more efficient and cost saving method to service fire cylinders. The Portasteele® CALCULATOR is based on a stand-alone 7” tablet computer which makes calculations in real time and logs the results, allowing the software to be used immediately in the field.

Using a digital liquid level gauge Portalevel® MAX for ultrasonic liquid level measurement is a reliable method of detecting leaks in cylinders. Using the Portasteele® CALCULATOR in combination with the Portalevel® MAX ultrasonic sensor level measurement enables the recorded liquid level to be converted into agent weight which accounts for the change in ambient temperature.

Advantages of Ultrasonic Level Measurement

Decreasing the time to regularly and effectively test cylinder agent weights, when paired with a ultrasonic liquid level measurement, Portasteele® CALCULATOR will reduce the inconvenience and costly man hours required for testing and ultrasonic level measurement calculation. The cylinder database function means often tested cylinder types, can be instantly recalled, reducing testing time and eliminating the potential tedium of re-measuring the same cylinder types for each test providing an incredibly convenient and quick to use tool. By replacing the use of manual calculation and formulae, Portasteele® CALCULATOR makes the whole process simple and effective.

Ultrasonic Level Measurement Accuracy

The UL approved Portalevel Max ultrasonic level measurement instruments is accurate to +/- 1.5mm. The device is a quick, accurate and efficient method of inspecting cylinder content.

History of Ultrasonic Level Measurement

In 1987 Mr EC Hunter and his Son, Dr CSP Hunter co-founded the company and invented the Portalevel® ultrasonic level measurement device.

Ultrasonic Liquid Level Indicator for co2

Coltraco Ultrasonics have a range of ultrasonic level measurement tools for varying agents and applications, including Portalevel portable ultrasonic liquid level indicator for co2. Get in touch for further information on the range of ultrasonic level measurement devices.

Level Measurement and Calibration

Ultrasonic level measurement calibration, spare parts and ultrasonic level measurement sensor for the bottle leak detection equipment are available from our global ODA Service Centres: UK (HQ), Australia, Singapore, India, UAE, Greece, France, USA, Caribbean.

Liquid Level Gauge Manufacturers

Coltraco Ultrasonics are liquid level gauges suppliers with 30 years of expertise in ultrasonics with true innovation. : Keeping the customer at the core of all we do, from product concept through to manufacturing and after sales Customer Care Commitment for the lifetime of our ultrasonic level measuring device.

Ultrasonic Level Measurement Price

Visit the Portalevel MAX page to download the ultrasonic level measurement pdf. Simple submit and enquiry for the ultrasonic liquid gas level indicator price and receive a quotation from the sales team within 24 working hours.

What is a fire suppression system?

Fixed fire special fire suppression systems protect urgently important infrastructure against hazards, fundamental for the safeguarding of critical facilities. However, gaseous extinguishing systems leak because they are active and dynamic systems and this threatens the consistent and reliable safety that they should offer to the space that they protect.

What is the method?

Choose the flagship handheld ultrasonic level sensor: Portalevel® for fire suppression system testing in 30 seconds. See the intro video here:

How does it work?

This innovative technology is designed to be very easy to use. Watch this “how to” video here:

What agents does it work on?

The Portalevel® level ultrasonic sensor can inspect CO2 fire suppression system, FM-200™, Novec™ 1230 fire suppression, FE-13™, FE-25™, FE-36™, Halons and a range of other extinguishing agents.

Why is it better?

It is safer, faster and cheaper to check if any gas is left in the bottles with an ultrasonic level measurement sensor. Plus, it is accepted by regulations as an alternative method.

Why is it safer?

Increase fire safety as there is no need to turn off the clean agent fire suppression system during inspection. No need to remove the cylinders from the manifold. Portalevel® level gauge enables you to test in-situ. Plus, no risk to personnel who may suffer back injuries by lifting heavy high pressure cylinders.

How is it faster?

Traditional weighing takes two people 15 minutes per cylinder. Portalevel® shows the level with just one person 30 seconds per cylinder.

How is it cheaper?

Saving you time so you can carry out more level detection inspections. Saving you labour costs and removing the risk of injuries. Plus, Coltraco Ultrasonics have a “Price Promise” for the most competitive quotes.

How do you calculate the weight of liquid?

If you want the weight of agent as well as the contents verification, you can use the Portalevel® MAX’s perfect partner: Portasteele® CALCULATOR liquid level to weight conversion calculator app to convert readings – taking just another 30 seconds. The clean agent calculator is the ideal tool to save time and money. This tablet based advanced volume to mass calculator application is the first in the world to provide agent weight readings without physically weighing the cylinders to comply with regulations. It is the ideal FM200 and CO2 Fire Suppression Calculator. With this fire suppression conversion calculator, clean agent calculation is quick and simple. The smart device has a FM200 calculation program built into it, as well as other extinguishing agents such as CO2, NOVEC 1230 and Halon 1301/1211.Portasteele® CALCULATOR provides instant real-time results which can be recorded then emailed directly for datalogged audit trail. By replacing the use of manual calculation and formulae, Portasteele® CALCULATOR makes the whole process of fire suppression system servicing simple and effective. This is a safer, more efficient and cost saving method to service fire cylinders. The technological innovation ensures an entirely user friendly and industry leading device.

Does the Portasteele® CALCULATOR take into account temperature?

The calculation provided takes into account all environmental factors, such as temperature measurements, without requiring an overwhelming excess of information from the user and can provide highly accurate results across the broad range of cylinder types available in the fire protection sector. The Portasteele® CALCULATOR takes into account temperature variation by compensating for it using density changes. The final result is weight, which is unaffected by temperature – something that cannot be achieved by a liquid level indicator alone.

Can I export my fire suppression system weight results?

The Portasteele® CALCULATOR exports data digitally in a ready-to-use into .csv format. Users can deliver premium reports quickly and easily, whether it is to their office or to their customers.

Why choose a liquid level indicator VS. A built-in magnetic gas bottle level indicator?

There are some limitations to built-in magnetic gas level indicators. They are invasive as they must be integrated inside the container. They cannot be retrofitted. There is room for human error as it relies on the user feeling the magnetic pull on the tape. Finally, the recording measurements manually in paper is less effective vs electronically recording by time and date as with the Portalevel® range.

Does the Portalevel® range work on containers suffering from a layer of rust?

Yes the Portalevel® with work on cylinders in poor condition, with the use of ultrasound gel but it is advisable that the rust be cleaned off as much as possible with a damp cloth.

How does a liquid level gauge work?

Ultrasonic technology is transmitted through the Portalevel® sensor which is placed externally on the container. Ultrasound returns to the sensor and depending on what is present behind the containers’ walls (i.e. liquid or gas), the ultrasound reacts differently. Using the ultrasonic fill level sensor, users are able to non-invasively test containers in situ and is accepted by regulations as an alternative method.

How do you calibrate an ultrasonic level transmitter?

Like an annual MOT on your car, calibrations service your equipment to ensure it is as accurate and reliable as when you first purchased it. In accordance with ISO 17025 for testing and measuring equipment, annual recalibration is recommended for companies complying with this regulation. Calibration can be conducted in our UK office or worldwide ODA Service Centres.

How often should fire suppression systems be inspected?

The below regulations state how often clean agent tanks need to be tested. Using liquid level survey equipment allows for regular and accurate testing of fire suppression systems.

NFPA 2001 Standard on Clean Agent Fire Extinguishing Systems
Section The weight of agent in the containers shall be verified by weighing or other approved methods

NFPA 12 Standard on Carbon Dioxide Extinguishing Systems
Section Container contents checked every 6 months

ISO 6183:2009 Fire protection equipment — Carbon dioxide extinguishing systems for use on premises — Design and installation
Section Loss in CO2 quantity of more than 10% mass shall be refilled or replaced

ISO 14520-1:2015 Gaseous fire-extinguishing systems — Physical properties and system design — Part 1: General requirements
Annex F5: Every 6 months for liquefied gases, check weight or use a liquid level indicator to verify correct content of containers,

BS5306-4:2001 Fire extinguishing installations and equipment on premises —
Part 4: Specifications for Carbon Dioxide systems
Section At least every six months, the container contents shall be checked.

Ultrasonic Gas level indicator project
A project in which the Portalevel® range has been applied is with a well-known Fire Servicing company in the USA who enquired for the Portalevel®, having been recommended our equipment by an associated company. Their interest in the equipment was to see if using a ultrasonic liquid level detector was a viable, accurate and cost effective alternative to testing cylinders by weighing. Two units were purchased for an extensive trial and the Portalevel® was put into operation from their Head Office for a period of 6 months with two of their Engineers trained by Coltraco free of charge. After the trial period, the results were clear. Using liquid level gauges for tanks had successfully reduced the time, manpower and cost. Smaller teams are now sent in order to carry out testing with testing only taking around 25% of the time when compared to the methods they were using previously.

These cost benefits they were able to pass onto their customers in offering more attractive tender propositions. Now the Portalevel® is in use in every one of their 14 locations.