This paper presents the state of the art of the general principle of liquid flow measurements by ultrasonic method, and problems of
flow measurements. We present an ultrasonic flowmeter designed according to smart sensors concept, for the measurement of irrigation
water flowing through pipelines or open channels, using the ultrasonic transit time approach. The new flowmeter works on the principle of measuring time delay differences between sound pulses transmitted upstream and downstream in the flowing liquid. The speed of sound in the flowing medium is eliminated as a variable because the flowrate calculations are based on the reciprocals of the transmission times. The transit time difference is digitally measured by means of a suitable, microprocessor controlled logic. This type of ultrasonic flowmeter will be widely used in industry and water management, it is well studied in this work, followed by some experimental results. For pressurized channels, we use one pair of ultrasonic transducer arranged in proper positions and directions of the pipe, in this case, to determine the liquid velocity, a real time on-line analysis taking account the geometries of the hydraulic system, is applied to the obtained ultrasonic data. In the open channels, we use a single or two pairs of ultrasonic emitter-receiver according to the desired performances.
Finally, the goals of this work consist in integrating the smart sensor into irrigation systems monitoring in order to evaluate potential advantages and demonstrate their performance, on the other hand, to understand and use ultrasonic approach for determining flow
characteristics and improving flow measurements by reducing errors caused by disturbances of the flow profiles.