Cost of Ownership
A mass flow meter or controller can be an expensive investment for any company. So can any flow instrument for that matter. More importantly, you should probably stop and ask yourself what would it cost you if you bought one flow instrument versus another.
Mass flow instrumentation varies in cost based on the type of technology or the features included with the device. Variations can range from products that require a small fortune to buy through products that are questionably cheap. Price is an important factor when it comes to making a decision to buying a flow instrument. But, does the cost of owning a device stop at the purchase price?
When establishing a price you are going to pay for a flow device, or any piece of equipment for that matter, it is important to take into account the cost of ownership.
Cost of ownership is calculated by examining the direct and indirect costs of owning a piece of equipment. Direct costs are up front costs associated with owning a piece of equipment. Direct costs are costs like the cost of device, labor costs to run the device, support and infrastructure required to run the device. Indirect costs are the costs that can be unplanned and can cost a company a lot in the long run. Indirect costs are costs like additional labor or support and downtime.
Direct costs are planned expenses that are taken into account long before the first step in ever set into motion. Alternately, indirect costs are usually unplanned, never come at an opportune time, and can be extremely expensive in both real money and lost opportunity. An examples of and indirect cost is unscheduled downtime of a process that is the result of a piece of equipment failing or not functioning properly or an unplanned support structure required to maintain or operate a piece of equipment
Flow instrumentation is categorically the least understood component in most systems. Operators also have a tendency to ‘blame’ flow instruments when a process either fails or begins to fail. That is why it is important to purchase a flow instrument conveys as much information as possible regarding how it is operating. A unit that displays a number of operating parameters can not help diagnose its own operation but it can also help pinpoint other failures in a system.