Does your operation make use of an industrial peristaltic pump? If you’re currently using a traditional centrifugal pump, you should read on to learn why peristaltic pumps could greatly improve the efficiency of your operation.

What is a Peristaltic Pump?

Unlike the traditional centrifugal pump, peristaltic pumps use positive displacement to pump materials. A peristaltic pump uses a flexible tube fitted inside a circular casing, using peristalsis through the constriction and relaxation of the tube to pump fluid through the housing.
Since the mechanical action of using a rotor to perform peristalsis occurs outside of the pump, this design prevents contamination of the pumping fluid and eliminates the need for maintenance on impellers or other parts inside the hose.
This design makes peristaltic pumps the best and simplest option for many applications, and if the following applies then you, you should greatly consider switching from centrifugal pumps to peristaltic pumps.

Operational Issues with Centrifugal Pumps

Many benefits of the peristaltic pump can be identified by highlighting the issues with traditional centrifugal pumps. Here are a few issues with centrifugal pumps you may want to be aware of:

1. Slurry must be watered down to go through a centrifugal pump. Thickening is a batch process which means that solids can settle in the pump while it is not in operation, resulting in pump blockages.
2. Many slurries are highly abrasive and corrosive, resulting in the need for frequent replacement of traditional centrifugal pump parts. This is because centrifugal pumps make use of impellers, which are located inside the hose.
3. Seal leakage is a common issue due to abrasion, lack of lubricant and back pressure.
4. Centrifugal pumps lose efficiency when the specific gravity reaches 1.3 or 30% solids. This puts significant demand in terms of process water on the pump. In contrast, peristaltic pumps can process slurries with SG of 1.8 or 80% solids.

  • E.g., If an operation processes 75 tonnes of ore an hour at 65% solids, switching from a centrifugal pump to a peristaltic pump result in water savings of roughly 1.1 million litres.

Many operators choose to purchase centrifugal pumps at a lower initial cost, but then bleed profit through increased maintenance costs.
Peristaltic pumps feature lower long-term maintenance costs. Spares are relatively inexpensive and due to the nature of these pumps; fewer blockages tend to occur. There are a variety of benefits that peristaltic pumps can bring to your operation.

Operational Benefits of Using a Peristaltic Pump

Why change centrifugal pump for thickener underflow to change to a peristaltic pump?
There are a quite a few differences between a peristaltic pump and a centrifugal pump. Centrifugal pumps must be located directly below the thickener to ensure effective suction, making access to conduct maintenance a more difficult task. On the other hand, peristaltic pumps are self-priming and require lower energy consumption.
Here are some other characteristics of a peristaltic pump:

  • Can handle very viscous and abrasive solids
  •  Can pump higher solid percentages
  • Don’t require sealing water
  • Can reverse their flow to unblock the lines if needed
  • Flow rate can be controlled via Variable Frequency Drive (VFD)

The ability to pump fluids with a higher solid content reduces the number of thickener filter stages, leading to a reduced physical plant footprint. As a result, this reduces future capital investment and operating costs.
Peristaltic pumps save a lot more space compared to centrifugal pumps and are a convenient option for any plant operator. Hoses can be replaced in situ, making the replacement process as straightforward as possible while minimizing downtime.
Peristaltic pumps are an ecofriendly choice, as they use 60% less electricity than a traditional centrifugal pump. However, the environmental benefits of using a peristaltic pump extend far past its operational efficiency.

Environmental Benefits of Using a Peristaltic Pump

There is a very real environment impact improvement by switching to peristaltic pumps across many industries. For example, let’s look at the use of cyanide in mineral recovery for gold recovery. Cyanide can pollute the land around plants, contaminating water supplies, and killing water life.
To address this issue, progressive cavity pumps have historically been used for dosing cyanide, but these have a clear leakage risk with the design of their seals. Peristaltic hose pumps are sealless and therefore have a lower risk of pollution.
Peristaltic pumps are the perfect pump for cyanide dosing, amongst other applications.

Choose a Sepro Peristaltic Pump

The Sepro C-Series of pumps use large pump housing that displace approximately twice the volume of competitors’ pumps. This means that Sepro’s peristaltic pumps can operate at slower speeds while still maintaining a high flow rate.
A Sepro C150 peristaltic pump would use 30 kilowatts as opposed to a centrifugal pump which requires 75 kilowatts, resulting in a 60% savings on electricity. Not only does this reduce annual power savings up to 210 megawatt hours, but also reduces the maximum demand equipment required.
Sepro pumps can handle abrasive, aggressive and contaminated fluids. They can pump in both directions and have stainless-steel construction options for corrosive environments. If an industrial peristaltic pump sounds like a solid upgrade for your operation, contact one of our Sepro engineers today.

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