How AODD Pumps Can Satisfy All Demands in Mining Operations

Mining is among the world’s oldest industries, tracing its roots back to those prehistoric days when somebody grabbed a digging instrument and started burrowing into the ground. In the many millennia since, mining has grown into one of many world’s most necessary and widespread business enterprises, with operations unfold throughout the globe whereas tasked with recovering an virtually inexhaustible listing of priceless commodities.
In truth, based on the World Mining Congress’s World Mining Data 2020 report, 17.7 billion metric tons of mined merchandise have been recovered in 2018, up from 11.three billion metric tons in 2000 and nearly double the 9.6 billion metric tons in 1985. Asian nations accounted for fifty eight p.c of the 2018 manufacturing, with North America second at 15.1 %, followed 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) had been probably the most prolific producers, with their whole fifty one.1 p.c of production more than the rest of the world mixed.
This means that the mining trade is a strong one, with stable progress anticipated to continue within the coming years in many areas of the world. It additionally signifies that mining operations will proceed to rely on pumping technologies that offer robust, dependable, and protected service in a variety of crucial liquid-handling operations. This white paper will illustrate why positive displacement air-operated double-diaphragm (AODD) pumps could be your finest option for many of these functions.
While mining would possibly seem like nothing more 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 reality, many advanced and typically delicate operations that must be carried out properly if the mining operation is to perform at its highest level of efficiency.
From a macro standpoint, this requires a pumping technology that may operate reliably in harsh and distant places, even when submerged, or when tasked with dealing with particulate-laden liquids or toxic/corrosive products, and also one that is prepared to be maintained and repaired just so downtime is lessened. The pumps must also be mild sufficient to be manually moved from location to location inside the mine itself.
For a few years, a popular choice to be used in these conditions was centrifugal pumps. While centrifugal pumps are able to create the high flow rates which are required, they’ve a variety of operational “pain points” that hamper their use in mining functions: an incapability to self-prime or run dry; particular seals wanted to stop leaks; particular linings needed to deal with solids; high motor speeds of as a lot as 1,800 rpm; and relatively excessive upkeep necessities and prices, particularly when charged with transferring solid-heavy liquids.
Another well-liked selection has been the progressive cavity pump, however, like centrifugal pumps, they’ve a quantity of operational shortcomings. These embody an incapability to consistently handle liquids with high ranges of abrasives, which ends up in elevated upkeep prices, wear on expensive stators and rotors that can finally need to be replaced, and total larger buy, working, and repair/replacement costs.
Here are some of the particular liquid-transfer operations that take place in a mine and the ways that some pump technologies 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 is recovered is commonly filled with particulates that can be as giant as zero.12 to 0.sixteen inches in measurement. If used on this software, centrifugal pumps require special supplies of building, which may be value prohibitive, to guard against impeller wear caused by the abrasive particles. Centrifugal pumps are additionally not dry-run capable, which adversely impacts their level of performance in this application.
General service: For common liquid-handling applications, you need an easy-to-operate pump that reliably can run dry, strip strains, operate at low speeds whereas nonetheless delivering excessive move rates, and be easy to take care of and repair. Centrifugal pumps merely don’t 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 usually calls for a need to make use of special mechanical seals, which may result in exorbitant upkeep, restore, and substitute prices.
Press filter: Press filters are used to wash the liquids which may be produced in the mines and, once more, centrifugal pumps can fall quick on this software because the solid-laden liquid can harm the pump’s internals until particular, more expensive supplies of construction or linings are used. Also, the nature of press-filter operation creates a robust discharge-pressure variation that may pressure the centrifugal pump to function away from its best effectivity point (BEP), resulting in high vibration and radial loads that can lead to 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 machinery, recent and fouled water, and any chemical compounds which might be required. In each instance, there is the danger that the pump might be compelled to run dry as the truck or storage vessel is emptied, while discharge-pressure variation can even generate excessive vibration and radial masses. As beforehand illustrated, centrifugal pumps cannot run dry, so that they need safety from this condition or the addition of particular seals. However, all of those upgrades nonetheless can not completely protect towards a catastrophic failure.
While centrifugal pumps—despite their popularity—have confirmed to not be the best solution in many liquid-handling purposes in mining, one pump know-how that has confirmed to be an optimum selection is AODD—in phrases of maximizing reliability, cost-effectiveness, ease of operation and upkeep, and security for mining personnel and the environment.
AODD pumps are capable of perform effectively in mining functions as a outcome of their method of operation permits them to easily handle 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, in addition to slurries laden with rocks, pebbles, and different particulates.
The easy design of the AODD pump features few transferring parts and comparably decrease speeds than other pump applied sciences, which improves reliability and simplifies maintenance, whereas the pump’s seal-less development results in fewer leaks, which is a important consideration when dealing with the various hard-to-seal, corrosive, or hazardous liquids which might be prevalent in a mining operation. AODD pumps are available in both steel (most generally aluminum, ductile iron and solid 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 number of AODD pump configurations present operational flexibility that may additionally end in optimized performance at many levels. The ability to feature AODD pumps in a wide range of purposes, from basic basic use to delicate chemical-handling processes, permits operators to extra cost-effectively outfit their mines. AODD pumps can be more cost effective to function, particularly these models which would possibly be outfitted with a next-generation mechanically actuated air distribution system (ADS). At Jackpot , AODD pumps excel within the typical rugged and harsh operating situations discovered in the world’s mines, which reduces breakdown incidents along with corresponding downtime and restore costs.
Specifically, Wilden, whose founder, Jim Wilden, conceived the AODD pumping precept sixty-five years in the past, has been devoted to growing applied sciences that meet the needs of mining operations. Today, Wilden offers three AODD pump fashions which are built to excel in mining applications, out there in ductile iron, cast iron, aluminum, polypropylene and Kynar supplies of development:
Brahma® Series: The Brahma pumps, which function a bolted configuration, have been constructed to be used in purposes that require the dealing with of liquids featuring large solids. The Brahma pumps have a novel top-inlet/bottom-discharge flow orientation and flap valves that enable the passage of enormous solids with no danger that damage will happen as a outcome of product entrapment or the settling of solids throughout the pump’s inside flow 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 scale back air consumption by as much as 60 p.c. The T810 and T1510 models 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 one hundred twenty five psi with solids-handling capability starting from 2 to three inches.
Stallion® Series: The Stallion pumps characteristic a clamped design with carrying handles for lightweight portability. Their design options large inner clearances and flow-through paths for easy passage of large solids with no chance for clogging. An altered ball/seat check-valve meeting additional permits solids passage, while a polyurethane display base on the inlet increases the pump’s durability. The PS4, PS8, and PS15 (1.5-, 2-, and 3-inch) fashions are powered by a Pro-Flo SHIFT ADS, with the T4, T8, and T15 (1.5-, 2-, and 3-inch) pumps that includes the Turbo-Flo ADS, Wilden’s most sturdy ADS design for the hardest environments. Flow rates amongst the six fashions range from fifty seven gallons per minute to 232 gallons per minute at working pressures as a lot as one hundred twenty five psi. Solids sizes that might 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 completely different chamber materials, including steel and plastics, even Kynar, which is able to dealing with high ranges of abrasive materials. The Pro-Flo SHIFT can be probably the most efficient AODD pump out there, capable of reducing up to 60 % air consumption. This makes it the best choice for handling corrosive and abrasive merchandise in mining processes. The pumps have a product vary that goes from 1.5 to three inches and flows from 2 to 271 gallons per minute.
All of the Brahma, Stallion, and Pro-Flo SHIFT pumps are capable of be outfitted with a wide array of diaphragm styles—including the newer Chem-Fuse, EZ-Install, and Reduced-Stroke models—in a various array of materials, such as Wil-Flex™ (Santoprene®), Geolast®, Polyurethane, Buna-N®, EPDM, Neoprene, FKM, and PTFE. This diaphragm vary gives users the widest choice of diaphragms available on the market, all of that are capable of offering prolonged mean time between failure (MTBF) for optimized uptime with reduced maintenance, restore, and alternative costs.
All of these capabilities make AODD pumps the ideal choice for the aforementioned widespread liquid-handling functions in mining: dewatering, basic service, corrosive-handling, filter press, and daily product switch.
In abstract, Wilden AODD pumps are the most suitable choice for mining purposes because they offer appreciable operational benefits, like comparable low-speed operation, dry-run, line-stripping, self-priming, and deadhead capability, together with increased operational security and a reduction in maintenance/repair costs that can be incurred by pumps that aren’t designed to deal with abrasive/corrosive or solid-laden liquids.
Wilden AODD pumps also outperform different AODD technologies in other vital methods: easy design with the lowest number of parts for quicker, simpler, and safer repairs and the lowest number of spare parts to stock; latest improvements in materials of construction that increase the pump’s MTBF; and improved effectivity by way of using the Pro-Flo SHIFT ADS, which ultimately ends in quicker product transfer with lower air consumption. Wilden also continues to innovate through the event of the next-generation Chem-Fuse and EZ-Install diaphragms, each of which improve service life and safety while not compromising the handling 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 may be reached at Wilden is a product brand of PSG®, a Dover company. PSG is comprised of several leading pump firms, including Abaque®, All-Flo™, Almatec®, Blackmer®, Ebsray, em-tec®, Griswold®, Hydro™, Mouvex®, Neptune®, Quantex™, Quattroflow®, RedScrew™, and Wilden®. For extra data, visit or

Leave a Comment