The air-operated, double-diaphragm pump is a well-known process-industry workhorse for general, sanitary, submersible and explosion-proof applications. The darn thing doesn’t even use electricity.
Now, Grand Terrace, Calif.-based Wilden, which in the 1950s first developed the so-called AODD-type pump, has announced launch and availability of its Pro-Flo SHIFT Air Distribution System (ADS) for use in its Advanced Series bolted and Original Series clamped AODD pumps.
Wilden today is part of Pump Solutions Group, a Dover Co.
The pump maker says the Pro-Flo SHIFT ADS brings 21st century innovation to AODD pump design and represents a significant breakthrough in energy efficiency within the pump category. The patent-pending Pro-Flo SHIFT ADS allows Wilden AODD pumps to achieve up to a 60% savings in air consumption over all competitive AODD pump technologies, while providing more product yield per standard cubic foot per minute (SCFM), the company says.
Other type air-control systems for AODD-type pumps are available to reduce compressed-air consumption. They, however, can be complex to configure and maintain, Greg Duncan, Wilden senior director of business development, says. In addition, the electronics involved can impact a pump’s suitability for explosion-proof and submersible applications.
Instead, the Wilden design incorporates an “air-control spool” that meters air flow into the air chamber at the end of valve stroke, so that the air chamber isn’t over-charged and all compressed air delivered to the pump delivers real work. It is the simplicity of this solution, one able to deliver such significant savings, which has the Wilden engineering, sales and management staff so excited.
“The Pro-Flo SHIFT represents a giant leap forward in the energy efficiency and performance of AODD pumps. The simple design of the ADS doesn’t require any additional bolted-on equipment or bulky electronics, allowing operators to keep the same compact footprint,” says Chris Distaso, Wildden director of engineering.
The Wilden Pro-Flo SHIFT also costs 50% less than an electronically actuated ADS and is submersible. Its use is ideal for harsh operating environments and includes ATEX compliance for use in potentially explosive atmospheres. The Pro-Flo SHIFT has fewer operating parts, which equates to less downtime and simple maintenance. With no electronics, its design is well suited for the harsh environments typically found in industrial applications.
In a live on-line demonstration, Carl Glauber, Wilden innovation specialist, who is said to have originally conceived the innovation inherent in the Pro-Flo Shift, showed the system’s efficacy in competition with other AODD pumps, including ones equipped with air-control systems.
Kits are being developed to fit the air control system onto pumps sourced from Wilden’s competitors. Yet Duncan makes the point that simply replacing an AODD pump with one equipped with the Pro-Flo SHIFT can “pay for itself in a matter of months.”
More than half of Wilden sales today come from outside the U.S., the company says, and, with yesterday’s announcement, The Pro-Flo Shift is available for sale worldwide in 38 mm (1-1/2”), 51 mm (2”), and 76 mm (3”) sizes and features maximumdischarge pressures to 8.6 bar (125 psig), maximum flows to 923 lpm (243 gpm) and maximum solid-handling size to 13 mm (1/2”). The Pro-Flo SHIFT is available with maximum suction lifts to 7.2 m (23.8’) dry and 9.6 m (30.6’) wet.