A diaphragm pump, also known as a membrane pump, is a type of positive displacement pump that works by pushing a liquid in one of two ways: by using the reciprocating action of a rubber or Teflon diaphragm or through the use of a thermoplastic diaphragm and its associated valves. Diaphragm pumps can be used to push a broad range of fluids in many different industries, whether they are low, medium, or high viscosity. They can also be used with dangerous chemicals such as acids as their design versatility allows them to be made from many different materials. In this blog, we will discuss the four most common types of diaphragm pumps: air-operated pumps, small air-operated pumps, small motor driven pumps, and hydra-cell pumps.
Air-operated pumps are the most common type of diaphragm pump. These work by using compressed air. They feature two sections with an inlet check valve and outlet check valve in each. The supply of air is moved from one section to another by using an air spool control device that is built into the pump. The shifting of air from one section to another forces fluids out through expulsion piping and into the next section. Pumps of this type produce some discharge flow pulsation, which can be minimized through the use of pulsation dampeners. Small air-operated pumps are used for liquids of average viscosities. They are most commonly used for low volumes of liquid. They feature inlet and outlet ports of many different sizes and their flow rates can range from two gallons per minute to ten gallons per minute.
Small motor driver pumps can create forces from 60 to 100 PSI. Pumps of this type are designed in two separate styles: demanding and bypass. Demanding pumps comprise a fixed force switch to routinely end & begin the pumping process at precise force settings. This style is the more common of the two. The other style is bypass, wherein the pump continues to run regardless of the force within the system, unless the expulsion valve is closed. However, if the expulsion valve is closed for too long, fluid overheating can take place and the internal components of the pump can become damaged.
Finally, hydra-cell pumps are the largest type of diaphragm pump. They are shaft-driven and supply between 1,500 and 2,500 PSI and flow rates of 36 gallons per minute. They are designed with different metals in addition to elastomers for acidic solutions, slurries, corrosive chemicals, abrasives, wettable powders, and fluids of high heat.
Advantages & Disadvantages
There are many advantages to using diaphragm pumps. These include low cost, self-priming, explosion proof, portability, changeable flow rates and expulsion pressures, easy installation, long service life, energy efficiency, and ability to withstand dangerous chemicals. Diaphragm pumps also have applications in many different industries, where they are used to push liquids such as corrosive chemicals, volatile solvents, viscous shear-sensitive liquids, food materials, pharmaceutical products, sticky fluids, dirty water, smaller solids, creams, abrasive slurries, oils, and gels. Whatever type of diaphragm pump you need, and whatever your intended application is, ensure you are getting it from a trusted source.
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