A chance meeting in the car park at the 2018 Water Industry Operators Association (WIOA) Conference in Tamworth has led to a successful change of peristaltic pumps at the Bathurst Water Treatment Plant.
The encounter was between WIOA Operator of the Year David Cashen and Phil Rothheudt, NSW Regional Manager for Hydro Innovations, and it led Cashen to the Hydro Innovations display stand at the conference to view a Ragazzini peristaltic pump.
Cashen is Supervisor of the Bathurst Water Treatment Plant, which at the time had two peristaltic pumps transferring carbon slurry for use in its treatment process. The slurry is quite abrasive, and so hoses needed to be replaced once or twice per year.
This frequency of maintenance was OK, but the hose changes were exceedingly messy because the pump casing needed to be filled with lubricating fluid, thanks to the pumps’ “shoe on hose” design. In the event of a hose failure, a mixture of carbon slurry and lubricating oil resulted in a mammoth mess to clean up, both inside and outside of the pump.
Hose replacements and the consequential cleanup of carbon mixed with lubricating oil could take days, and Cashen also had the cost of the (not inexpensive) lubrication fluid to replace each time, on top of the replacement hose costs.
Once Cashen had been shown the features and benefits of the Ragazzini peristaltic pump over his existing units, he was convinced he had found the answer to his messy hose changing issues.
The Ragazzini peristaltic pump features a number of enhancements over other brands, which makes them highly reliable, and easy to service and maintain.
First, the “roller on bearings” design eliminates the need for lubricating oil, reduces friction on the hose (thanks to the use of rollers instead of “shoes”) and results in extended hose life.
The automatic retractable roller system enables easy maintenance, simplifies hose changeover and takes pressure off hoses during pump rest periods.
A leak detector automatically stops the pump when a hose fails and sends an alarm, which minimises product loss. And with no (hose) lubricating oil in the pump chamber there is no mess to clean up or danger of contamination to pumped product or the surrounding area in the event of a hose failure. This greatly simplifies hose change-outs.
The range comes with a choice of seven different hoses, making it easy to specify the right hose for the right product. And there are pumps with duties from 1 to 180,000L/h, with operating pressures up to 15bar.
Two Ragazzini model MSO pumps were subsequently supplied, and one was fitted immediately to see if it performed to expectations and fulfilled the promises made.
The first pump has now been operating since July 2018 (running continuously for up to 18-20 hours per day in the hotter periods); and at a recent inspection in April 2019, there had been no hose failure or need to change-out the original hose.
Cashen’s expectations have been more than realised with not only a clean and reliable system to pump the carbon slurry, but a hose life that is up to 9 months and still going.
The initial outlay has also been vindicated by the cost savings in downtime and clean-up time, reliability, reduced hose replacement and all round efficiency.
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