How AODD Pumps Can Satisfy All Demands in Mining Operations

Mining is amongst the world’s oldest industries, tracing its roots back to those prehistoric days when somebody grabbed a digging instrument and started burrowing into the bottom. In the numerous millennia since, mining has grown into one of many world’s most essential and widespread business enterprises, with operations unfold throughout the globe while tasked with recovering an nearly inexhaustible record of valuable commodities.
In fact, according to the World Mining Congress’s World Mining Data 2020 report, 17.7 billion metric tons of mined merchandise were recovered in 2018, up from eleven.3 billion metric tons in 2000 and almost double the 9.6 billion metric tons in 1985. Asian countries accounted for fifty eight % of the 2018 production, with North America second at 15.1 p.c, adopted by Europe (8 percent), Oceania (6.eight percent), Latin America (6.3 percent), and Africa (5.3 percent). Individually, China (23 percent), the United States (12.1 percent), Russia (9.2 percent), and Australia (7.2 percent) were essentially the most prolific producers, with their total 51.1 % of manufacturing more than the rest of the world combined.
This means that the mining trade is a strong one, with solid development expected to proceed within the coming years in many regions of the world. It additionally signifies that mining operations will continue to depend on pumping applied sciences that offer strong, reliable, and protected service in numerous critical liquid-handling operations. This white paper will illustrate why constructive displacement air-operated double-diaphragm (AODD) pumps could be the best choice for many of those purposes.
While mining might look like nothing greater than a rough-and-tumble operation—holes are dug by heavy machinery or with explosives, opening the hidden ode to entry from above—there are, in fact, many complex and sometimes delicate operations that have to be performed properly if the mining operation is to carry out at its highest degree of efficiency.
From a macro standpoint, this requires a pumping expertise that can operate reliably in harsh and distant places, even when submerged, or when tasked with dealing with particulate-laden liquids or toxic/corrosive products, and in addition one that is prepared to be maintained and repaired simply so downtime is lessened. The pumps must even be gentle sufficient to be manually moved from location to location throughout the mine itself.
For many years, a well-liked selection for use in these conditions was centrifugal pumps. While centrifugal pumps are able to create the excessive flow rates that are required, they have a number of operational “pain points” that hamper their use in mining functions: an incapability to self-prime or run dry; particular seals needed to stop leaks; particular linings wanted to deal with solids; excessive motor speeds of as much as 1,800 rpm; and comparatively excessive upkeep requirements and costs, particularly when charged with transferring solid-heavy liquids.
Another popular choice has been the progressive cavity pump, however, like centrifugal pumps, they have a variety of operational shortcomings. These embody an inability to persistently handle liquids with high levels of abrasives, which outcomes in increased upkeep costs, put on on costly stators and rotors that can eventually have to be changed, and overall higher buy, working, and repair/replacement costs.
Here are a few of the specific liquid-transfer operations that happen in a mine and the ways that some pump applied sciences can fall brief in satisfying them:
Mine dewatering: Removing extra produced water from the mine is a important 24/7/365 operation and the water that’s recovered is often full of particulates that may be as giant as zero.12 to zero.sixteen inches in size. If used on this software, centrifugal pumps require particular materials of construction, which can be price prohibitive, to protect in opposition to impeller put on attributable to the abrasive particles. Centrifugal pumps are additionally not dry-run capable, which adversely impacts their stage of performance in this utility.
General service: For widespread liquid-handling applications, you want an easy-to-operate pump that reliably can run dry, strip traces, function at low speeds while nonetheless delivering high flow rates, and be easy to take care of and restore. Centrifugal pumps merely do not possess these capabilities.
Corrosive liquids: Much like solid-laden liquids, corrosive ones can wreak havoc on the wetted components of centrifugal and progressive cavity pumps. This sometimes demands a necessity to use particular mechanical seals, which may lead to exorbitant upkeep, repair, and replacement prices.
Press filter: Press filters are used to clean the liquids that are produced within the mines and, again, centrifugal pumps can fall short in this application because the solid-laden liquid can damage the pump’s internals until special, dearer materials of building or linings are used. Also, the nature of press-filter operation creates a robust discharge-pressure variation that may pressure the centrifugal pump to operate away from its greatest efficiency level (BEP), resulting in excessive vibration and radial masses that can result in shortened service life. A solution to this is the incorporation of variable frequency drives (VFDs) and controllers, however these are costly and may negatively have an result on the cost-effectiveness of the operation.
Product switch: This comes in all types in a mining operation, from loading and unloading from transport vehicles with new and used oil for the heavy equipment, fresh and fouled water, and any chemical compounds that are required. In each instance, there could be the chance that the pump might be forced to run dry because the truck or storage vessel is emptied, whereas discharge-pressure variation can also generate excessive vibration and radial hundreds. As beforehand illustrated, centrifugal pumps can not run dry, so they need safety from this situation or the addition of particular seals. However, all of these upgrades still cannot completely protect towards a catastrophic failure.
While centrifugal pumps—despite their popularity—have confirmed to not be the best answer in lots of liquid-handling purposes in mining, one pump technology that has proven to be an optimum choice is AODD—in terms of maximizing reliability, cost-effectiveness, ease of operation and maintenance, and safety for mining personnel and the setting.
AODD pumps are in a place to carry out effectively in mining applications as a end result of their method of operation permits them to easily deal with variable move rates and pressures, while being dry-run and line-stripping succesful, and nimble enough to switch liquids which are shear-sensitive or high-viscosity, as well as slurries laden with rocks, pebbles, and other particulates.
The easy design of the AODD pump options few transferring elements and comparably decrease speeds than other pump applied sciences, which improves reliability and simplifies upkeep, whereas the pump’s seal-less building leads to fewer leaks, which is a crucial consideration when dealing with the many hard-to-seal, corrosive, or hazardous liquids that are prevalent in a mining operation. AODD pumps can be found in each metal (most generally aluminum, ductile iron and cast iron) and plastic (polypropylene and PVDF) housing constructions, whereas a wide array of elastomers can be used within the diaphragms, which eliminates many chemical-compatibility concerns.
A wide variety of AODD pump configurations present operational flexibility that may also result in optimized performance at many levels. The capability to function AODD pumps in a variety of applications, from basic common use to delicate chemical-handling processes, allows operators to extra cost-effectively outfit their mines. AODD pumps can be more value effective to function, especially these fashions that are outfitted with a next-generation mechanically actuated air distribution system (ADS). At their most basic, AODD pumps excel in the typical rugged and harsh working circumstances discovered in the world’s mines, which reduces breakdown incidents together with corresponding downtime and repair prices.
Specifically, Wilden, whose founder, Jim Wilden, conceived the AODD pumping precept sixty-five years ago, has been dedicated to developing technologies that meet the needs of mining operations. Today, Wilden presents three AODD pump models which are constructed to excel in mining purposes, available in ductile iron, cast iron, aluminum, polypropylene and Kynar supplies of building:
Brahma® Series: The Brahma pumps, which function a bolted configuration, have been constructed for use in applications that require the handling of liquids that includes large solids. The Brahma pumps have a singular top-inlet/bottom-discharge move orientation and flap valves that allow the passage of enormous solids with no threat that damage will occur on account of product entrapment or the settling of solids throughout the pump’s internal circulate paths. Brahma pumps can be found in two models—PS810 (2-inch) and PS1510 (3-inch)—that are outfitted with the revolutionary Pro-Flo® SHIFT ADS, which has been designed to reduce back air consumption by as a lot as 60 percent. The T810 and T1510 fashions are powered by the Turbo-Flo™ ADS, the industry’s first air motor for AODD pumps. The flow-rate vary for the 4 Brahma pumps is 166 to 258 gallons per minute at pressures up to a hundred twenty five psi with solids-handling capability starting from 2 to 3 inches.
Stallion® Series: The Stallion pumps feature a clamped design with carrying handles for lightweight portability. Their design features large inner clearances and flow-through paths for straightforward passage of enormous solids with no likelihood for clogging. An altered ball/seat check-valve meeting further enables solids passage, while a polyurethane display screen base at the inlet increases the pump’s durability. The PS4, PS8, and PS15 (1.5-, 2-, and 3-inch) models are powered by a Pro-Flo SHIFT ADS, with the T4, T8, and T15 (1.5-, 2-, and 3-inch) pumps featuring the Turbo-Flo ADS, Wilden’s most robust ADS design for the toughest environments. Flow rates amongst the six fashions vary from fifty seven gallons per minute to 232 gallons per minute at working pressures up to a hundred twenty five psi. Solids sizes that can be dealt with vary from half to 1 inch.
Pro-Flo SHIFT Series: Pro-Flo SHIFT pumps characteristic clamped or bolted configuration. Their design options totally different chamber materials, including metal and plastics, even Kynar, which is able to dealing with high levels of abrasive supplies. The Pro-Flo SHIFT is also probably the most environment friendly AODD pump in the market, capable of lowering up to 60 percent air consumption. This makes it the best choice for handling corrosive and abrasive merchandise in mining processes. Key have a product vary that goes from 1.5 to 3 inches and flows from 2 to 271 gallons per minute.
All of the Brahma, Stallion, and Pro-Flo SHIFT pumps are in a position to be outfitted with a wide selection of diaphragm styles—including the newer Chem-Fuse, EZ-Install, and Reduced-Stroke models—in a varying array of materials, similar to Wil-Flex™ (Santoprene®), Geolast®, Polyurethane, Buna-N®, EPDM, Neoprene, FKM, and PTFE. This diaphragm vary gives customers the widest choice of diaphragms on the market, all of that are able to providing extended mean time between failure (MTBF) for optimized uptime with decreased maintenance, repair, and substitute costs.
All of these capabilities make AODD pumps the ideal alternative for the aforementioned widespread liquid-handling purposes in mining: dewatering, common service, corrosive-handling, filter press, and every day product transfer.
In summary, Wilden AODD pumps are the greatest option for mining functions because they offer considerable operational benefits, like comparable low-speed operation, dry-run, line-stripping, self-priming, and deadhead functionality, along with increased operational safety and a reduction in maintenance/repair costs that can be incurred by pumps that aren’t designed to handle abrasive/corrosive or solid-laden liquids.
Wilden AODD pumps additionally outperform different AODD applied sciences in different vital methods: easy design with the bottom variety of components for sooner, less complicated, and safer repairs and the lowest number of spare parts to stock; recent enhancements in materials of development that enhance the pump’s MTBF; and improved effectivity through the use of the Pro-Flo SHIFT ADS, which in the end results in quicker product switch with lower air consumption. Wilden additionally continues to innovate via the event of the next-generation Chem-Fuse and EZ-Install diaphragms, each of which improve service life and security whereas not compromising the dealing with of difficult liquids.
Fernando Meneses is the regional manager North Latin America for Wilden, a leading producer of air-operated double-diaphragm (AODD) pumps. He could be reached at Wilden is a product brand of PSG®, a Dover firm. PSG is comprised of a number of main pump firms, including Abaque®, All-Flo™, Almatec®, Blackmer®, Ebsray, em-tec®, Griswold®, Hydro™, Mouvex®, Neptune®, Quantex™, Quattroflow®, RedScrew™, and Wilden®. For extra info, visit or

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