Panametrics DigitalFlow DF868 Ultrasonic Flow Meter
Starting at $5,450.00

Not in stock. Usually ships in 8-14 weeks [?]

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Requires sensors and mounting hardware, purchased separately. Find options under accessories or call 1-800-884-4967.


  • Up to 3in (76.2mm) pipe wall thickness
  • ±40ft/s (±12.2m/s) bidirectional range
  • -4 to 131°F (-20 to 55°C) operating temp
  • ±0.1% to 0.3% of reading repeatability
  • Totalized flow and trend data
  • Two-channel / two-path version available
  • Energy measurement option
  • Large backlit LCD display
  • NIST calibration available (see accessories)
  • Hazadous area certification

The Panametrics DigitalFlow DF868 Ultrasonic Flow Meter is a full-featured, fixed-installation liquid flow meter designed to meet all your flow metering and energy measurement needs. Its patented Correlation Transit-Time digital signal processing provides drift-free measurements in ultraclean and most "dirty" liquids. This includes fluids with gas bubbles and entrained solids that previously required Doppler-type meters.

Applications for the DF868 include:

  • Refined hydrocarbons
  • Petroleum products
  • Crude oil
  • Lubricating oils
  • Diesel and fuel oils
  • Solvents
  • Water and wastewater
  • Hot/chilled water
  • Water/glycol solutions
  • Chemicals
  • Other liquids

Dual-Channel Version Reduces Costs and Improves Performance

The optional dual-channel/dual-path model can be user-configured for a variety of applications. It can be set up to measure flow in two separate pipes with one meter to reduce the cost-per-measurement point. To minimize the effects of flow profile distortions, flow swirl and cross flow, and for maximum accuracy, you can install two sets of transducers on the same pipe.

Measure Flow from Outside the Pipe

Using clamp-on flow transducers, the DF868 measures flow rate through metal, plastic or even concrete-lined pipes without penetrating the pipe wall. To hold clamp-on transducers in place, a variety of clamping fixtures are available to accommodate different pipe sizes, transducer types and attachment methods (e.g., chain, wire rope, Velcro strap, magnetic, bolt-on or weldable steel yoke with metal band). Our universal clamping fixture includes ruled slide tracks to simplify transducer spacing for accurate flow measurements. There's even a special small-pipe clamping fixture with miniaturized transducers to simplify flow measurement on 0.5 to 2 inch lines.

Wetted Transducers for Maximum Accuracy

Obstructionless wetted transducers are readily available for maximum performance. After proper installation, transit-time accuracies of better than 1 percent are achievable in most applications, matching the performance of expensive factory-calibrated meters. Measurement range is 0.1 to 40 ft/s (0.03 to 12.2 m/s) for a turndown ratio of 400 to 1 in pipes from 1 to over 200 inches in diameter. Measurement is non-contaminating, obstruction-less and causes no pressure drop. The DF868 is all digital so measurements don't drift, and it doesn't need regular maintenance since there are no moving parts to wear out or orifices to clog.

Dual-LCD Display, Data Logger and a Wide Variety of I/O Options

Whether single-channel or dual-channel, all DF868 meters feature two independent user-programmable graphic LCDs, giving you simultaneous access to more data. You have complete flexibility to display any parameter(s) on either LCD in a variety of numerical and graphic formats. Examples include numerical display of real-time flow measurements, real-time flow graphs and diagnostic waveforms, and numerical/graphic display of data from the meter's built-in 43,000-point data logger. You can also add up to 12 isolated 4 to 20 mA outputs, up to six hermetically sealed or standard alarm relays, and up to 12 frequency/totalizer outputs.

Built-In Energy Measurement Capability

Another feature that makes the DF868 meter such a powerful and versatile flow meter is the energy measurement software included in every meter. The DF868, with optional RTDs and input boards, extends the benefits of ultrasonic flow measurement to energy measurement. Benefits include measurement of flow and temperature without pipe penetration and compatibility with pipes from 1 to 200 inches (25.4mm to 5m) in diameter. The DF868 meter measures energy flow in water and water/glycol heating and cooling systems with temperatures from -4 to 410°F (-20 to 210°C). Consult Instrumart for use with other liquid systems.

To ensure compatibility with existing or preferred temperature instrumentation, the DF868 meter is available with three analog input boards. The transmitter input board provides 24-VDC loop power and two isolated 4- to 20- mA inputs for transmitters. For applications requiring raw RTDs, the RTD input board provides two isolated three-wire RTD inputs for temperatures from -100 to 350°C (-148 to 662°F).

The DF868 Flowmeter Uses the Transit-Time Flow Measurement Technique

The transit-time technique uses a pair of transducers, with each transducer sending and receiving coded ultrasonic signals through the fluid. When the fluid is flowing, signal transit time in the downstream direction is shorter than in the upstream direction. The difference between these transit times is proportional to the velocity of the flow. The DigitalFlow DF868 measures this time difference and uses programmed pipe parameters to determine flow rate and direction.

Automatically Adjusts to Changing Fluid Properties

Our unique Automatic Tracking Window (ATW) feature, standard in all DigitalFlow DF868 meters, ensures accurate flow measurements even when fluid properties are unknown or changing. Like the seek mode on a car stereo, ATW dynamically sweeps the receiver window whenever the sound speed of the fluid changes. This powerful feature enables flow measurement when the fluid sound speed is unknown, when it is changing due to large temperature shifts, or when a new liquid starts to flow in a multiproduct pipeline.

ATW works for both clamp-on and wetted transducer applications by searching for a reliable ultrasonic receive signal. It does this by varying the time between the transmit signal and the receive signal window until the receive signal is found. The tracking window automatically sweeps through a range of time intervals based on the minimum and maximum expected sound speeds programmed by the user.

The window moves (tracks) in response to changes in the fluid sound speed. Once the optimal signal is found, ATW locks onto it until another large change in sound speed occurs.When this happens, ATW returns to the seek mode until the optimal signal is found again.

Is Built to Be Economical and Stay Economical

To be of real value, a flowmeter must be as economical to own and operate as it is capable in the field. Using the latest microcircuit and manufacturing technologies, the DigitalFlow DF868 flowmeter is built to stay in service for many years. Completely solid state, the DigitalFlow DF868 rarely wears out or needs servicing, resulting in little downtime and low maintenance costs.

The DigitalFlow DF868 will continue to save money by streamlining the measurement process and trimming labor costs.

National Stock Numbers (NSN)

The following National Stock Numbers reference the Panametrics DigitalFlow DF868 Ultrasonic Flow Meter:

NSN NSN Item Name Reference/Part Number

Required Transducers

At least one transducer is required for this product

Panametrics C-RS Ultrasonic Flow Transducers
Pair of high-performance clamp-on transducers
In Stock
Panametrics C-PT High Temperature Ultrasonic Flow Transducers
Pair high-efficiency, plastic / metal shear wave transducers for pipes 2in & larger
In Stock
Panametrics UTXDR Ultrasonic Flow Transducers
General purpose area transducers with adjustable clamping fixture
In Stock
Panametrics CF-LP 1/2" to 2" Ultrasonic Flow Transducer
4MHZ small pipe transducers and clamping fixtures for temperatures from -40 - 450°F
In Stock
Panametrics C-ET Liquid Clamp-On Transducers
Designed for extremely high and extremely low process temperature applications


Panametrics Panaview Software
Instrument Interface Software Version 1.4.8
In Stock

Clamp-on Fixtures

Panametrics UC Universal Clamping Fixture for Transducers
Universal clamping fixture for xx868 and PT878 meters
In Stock
Panametrics MC Magnetic Clamping Fixture for Transducers
Magnetic clamping fixture for xx868 and PT878 meters
In Stock
Panametrics Coated Aluminum Inserts
Coated aluminum inserts for use with C-RS transducers
In Stock
Panametrics SCF Permanent Clamp-On Fixture
Pair of 316L stainless steel clamping fixtures for permanent installations of transducers that are 2 inches or larger
In Stock


Carry Case for Magnetic Clamping Fixtures
Long carry case for UC-F-X-24-0 or magnetic clamping fixtures
In Stock


Please consider these optional accessories.

FS-200 Ultrasonic Thickness Gauge
Hand-held ultrasonic pipe thickness meter with 5 MHz transducer
In Stock
Panametrics CRTD Dual RTDs with Transmitter
Calibrated, matched pair of Pt1000 surface mount, 4-wire RTDs with integrated 4-20mA transmitter
In Stock
Panametrics Flow Meter Cables
Pair of coaxial signal cables for the Panametrics AquaTrans AT868 and DigitalFlow DF868
In Stock

Spare Parts

Panametrics 1 Amp Fuse
1 Amp Fuse For 100-120 VAC Units. Used with DF868 Flow Meter
Panametrics 1/2 Amp Fuse
1/2 Amp Fuse For 200-240 VAC Units. For use with DF868 Flow Meter.
Panametrics 3 Amp Fuse
3 Amp Fuse For 12-28 VDC Units. For use with DF868 Flow Meter.
Panametrics Fuse Cap
Fuse Cap for DF868 Flow Meter
Panamtrics Fuse Holder
Fuse holder for DF868 Flow Meter.
Panametrics Terminal block - 4 pin
Terminal block - 4 pin for Transducer Connection
Panametrics Terminal block - 5 pin
Terminal block - 5 pin for RS232 Connection
Panametrics 8-Pin Terminal Block for Output Board
8 pin terminal block For Isolated Analog Output Board. For use with DF868 Flow Meter.
Panametrics 8-Pin Terminal Block for Input Board
Terminal Block - 8 Pin For Isolated Analog Input Board and Frequency Totaliser Board. For use with DF868 Flow Meter.
Panametrics 9-Pin Terminal Block for Alarm Board
9-Pin Terminal Block for Alarm Board. For use with DF868 Flow Meter.
Panametrics Fuse Holder, rack unit
Fuse Holder for rack unit. For use with DF868 Flow Meter.
Panametrics Fuse 100-120 VAC Rack Unit
For use with DF868 Flow Meter


This product can be used in the following applications:

Application Notes

Here's how some of our customers used this product.

Adding Redundancy to Fuel Monitoring

The Background: Our customer is an airport that wants to add redundancy to their fuel pumping operations to protect from meter failure.

The Problem: Fuel sales are a very important source of income for this airport. It is also vitally important that refueling continues even if a meter requires servicing.

The Solution: We recommended the dual-channel GE Panametrics DigitalFlow DF868 Ultrasonic Flow Meter with two sets of sensors placed just a few feet from each other. If one channel goes down, the second channel continues without issue while a replacement set of parts can be installed.

Unlike many other 'fixed' clamp-on meters, the DF868 can be programmed with multiple profiles that pertain to different pipe and fluid conditions. This specific function greatly enhances the efficiency when troubleshooting. Without affecting the critical process profile that is known to be correct, the technician can simply switch to a separate profile made for a simple standpipe of water in order to determine if there is a change in the application or if it’s a component failure.

Multi-channel Measurement

The Background: Our customer is a university that maintains their own water treatment and distribution facility. They seek a flow meter to measure the amount of hot and cold water distributed from this facility to the hundreds of buildings on campus.

The Problem: The facility delivers hot water at ~400°F and 300 psi while cold water is typically in the range of 40-60°F. They need a simple way to measure the flow of both hot and cold water from the facility.

The Solution: We recommended the GE Panametrics DigitalFlow DF868 Ultrasonic Flow Meter which provides multi-channel input allowing both hot and cold water to be measured with one meter. The DF868 provides noninvasive liquid flow measurement of velocity, volumetric and energy flow rates using transit time technology. Temperature sensors can be added with the I/O cards and all data can be sent back via MODBUS (other output options are available).