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A centrifugal pump is a device or equipment which converts kinetic energy to pressure energy by
a rotating impeller. The centrifugal pump is the most common pump in any industry and the
reason for it is that they are the best pumps and requires less repair. Centrifugal pumps use one
or more impellers which attach to and rotate with the shaft, providing the energy that moves
liquid through the pump and pressurizes the liquid to move it through the piping system. They
are usually quick to install, require less maintenance than other alternatives, and are generally
easy to repair. Centrifugal pumps are usually the best choice for lower viscosity (thin) liquids and
high flow rates. They are also used in many residential, commercial, industrial, and municipal
applications. Multi-stage centrifugal pumps have more than one impeller, and are used for
applications that require higher pressure or head. Common uses include water, sewage,
petroleum and petrochemical pumping.
Following is the part of the centrifugal pump:
1. Inlet and outlet opening
2. Casing
3. Impeller
4. Shaft
There are a wide variety of materials of construction, ranging from various plastics and cast iron
or stamped stainless steel for lighter duties - to bronzes, stainless steels, exotic alloys, and
specialty plastics for more corrosive, abrasive, hygienic, or other difficult applications. Piping
connections on centrifugal pumps are available with standard pipe threads on smaller sizes, and
flanges on larger sizes.
Casing of the centrifugal pump is made up of cast iron. Cast iron has the good property by taking
the desired shape, so easy to mold into any shape. Actually centrifugal pumps uses centrifugal
force to make water pressurized. A centrifugal pump is mostly used to make large discharge.

The process liquid enters the suction nozzle and then into eye (center) of a revolving device
known as an impeller. When the impeller rotates, it spins the liquid sitting in the cavities between
the vanes outward and provides centrifugal acceleration. As liquid leaves the eye of the impeller
a low-pressure area is created causing more liquid to flow toward the inlet. Because the impeller
blades are curved, the fluid is pushed in a tangential and radial direction by the centrifugal force.
This force acting inside the pump is the same one that keeps water inside a bucket that is rotating
at the end of a string.

Advantages of centrifugal pumps:

1. Small in size, space saving & less capital costs

2. Easy for maintenance
3. No danger creates if discharge v/v is closed while starting
4. Deal with large volume
5. Able to work medium to low head
6. Able to work medium to low viscous fluid

Disadvantages of centrifugal pumps:

1. Extra priming requires.

2. Cannot be able to work high head.
3. Cannot deal with high viscous fluid.

Reciprocating pumps are one of the two main categories of positive displacement pumps. The
category covers some of the most versatile and useful types of pumps, including piston pumps,
diaphragm pumps, plunger pumps, and many others. They range from the small, hand-powered
pumps used prior to the Industrial Revolution, to massive pumping systems used in major
industrial, mining, and agricultural applications.

High Pressure is the main characters of this pump and this high pressure output are being used in
places like starting of the engine or you can say the building of pressure in the fluids. But they
are used in limited application because they require lots of maintenance. These pumps are
positive displacement pumps and that is the reason they do not require any type of priming for
their functioning in the starting period of pump.

During the suction stroke the piston moves left thus creating vacuum in the Cylinder. This
vacuum causes the suction valve to open and water enters the Cylinder. During the delivery
stroke the piston moves towards right. This increasing pressure in the cylinder causes the suction
valve to close and delivery to open and water is forced in the delivery pipe. The air vessel is used
to get uniform discharge.
Fig. Reciprocating pump


The main parts of Reciprocating pump are:

1. Cylinder
It is made of cast iron or steel alloy. The piston reciprocates inside the cylinder. The movement
of piston is obtained by a connecting rod which connects piston and rotating crank.

2. Suction pipe
It connects the source of water and cylinder, the water is sucked.
3. Delivery pipe
Water sucked by pump is discharged into delivery pipe.
4. Suction valve
It adjusts the flow from the suction pipe into delivery pipe.

5. Delivery valve
It admits the flow from the cylinder in to delivery pipe.

6. Air vessel
It is a cast iron closed chamber having an opening at its pass through which the water flows into

Advantages of reciprocating pump:

1. High efficiency
2. No priming needed
3. Can deliver water at pressure
4. Can work in wide pressure range
5. Continuous rate of discharge

Disadvantages of reciprocating pump:

1. High initial cost
2. High maintenance cost
3. No uniform torque
4. Low discharge capacity
5. Pulsating flow and difficult to pump viscous fluids


Considered a positive displacement type that uses rotating mechanisms to move fluids or gases
through piping systems. There are several types including gear pumps, screw pumps and vane
pumps. Unlike reciprocating pumps, which create a pulsing flow, rotary pumps are designed to
generate a steady, unvarying flow. The main disadvantage is in order to work with maximum
effectiveness; they need to have a very close clearance between the rotating mechanism and the
walls of the pump chamber. Any wear and tear around the edges of the mechanism can greatly
reduce pump performance.
Rotary pumps are capable of pumping more fluid than reciprocating pumps of the same weight.
A number of types are included in this classification, among which are the gear pump, the screw
pump, and the moving vane pump. Unlike the centrifugal pump, the rotary pump is a positive-
displacement pump. This means that for each revolution of the pump, a fixed volume of fluid is
moved regardless of the resistance against which the pump is pushing . Rotary pumps are useful
for pumping oil and other heavy viscous liquids. In the engine room, rotary pumps are used for
handling lube oil and fuel oil and are suitable for handling liquids over a wide range of
viscosities. Rotary pumps are designed with very small clearances between rotating parts and
stationary parts to minimize leakage (slippage) from the discharge side back to the suction side.
Rotary pumps are designed to operate at relatively slow speeds to maintain these clearances;
operation at higher speeds causes erosion and excessive wear, which result in increased
clearances with a subsequent decrease in pumping capacity.
Fig. Rotary Pump

Advantages of Rotary Pumps:

1. They can deliver liquid to high pressures.

2. Self - priming.
3. Give a relatively smooth output, (especially at high speed).
4. Positive Acting.
5. Can pump viscous liquids

Disadvantages of Rotary Pumps:

1. More expensive than centrifugal pumps.

2. Should not be used for fluids containing suspended solids.
3. Excessive wear if not pumping viscous material.
4. Must NEVER be used with the discharge closed