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In the name of God

Pump diaghragms

hamedjonami tranehkhafan

azad Islamic university of qazvin NOV 2009


Catalog Title
The Diaphragm Pump The Structure of a Diaphragm Its the Diaphragm that Does It Keaflex to make elastomer pump diaphragm for Salamander Sample system design and diaphragm pumps
Selecting the Proper Diaphragm Pressure Control Valve

3 14 20

24 27 34

The Logical Path - The Application of Ceramics to Diaphragm Pumps Getting Pumped Up on Diaphragms by Design Source 41 47 51

The Diaphragm Pump

The unique property of the reciprocating diaphragm pump is that the actuating piston does not come into direct contact with the mobile phase and thus, the demands on the piston-cylinder seal are not so great. The diaphragm has a relatively high surface area and thus, the movement of the diaphragm is relatively small and consequently the pump can be operated at a fairly high frequency. High frequency pumping results in a very significant reduction in pulse amplitude and, in addition, high frequency pulses are more readily damped by the column system. Nevertheless, it must be emphasized that diaphragm pumps are not pulseless. A diagram of a diaphragm pump, showing its mode of action is depicted in figure 10

Figure 0. The Action of a Diaphragm Pump

A diaphragm pump is a positive displacement pump that uses a combination of the reciprocating action of a rubber,thermoplastic or teflon diaphragm and suitable non-return check valves to pump a fluid. Sometimes this type of pump is also called a membrane pump. There are three main types of diaphragm pumps: In the first type, the diaphragm is sealed with one side in the fluid to be pumped, and the other in air or hydraulic fluid. The diaphragm is flexed, causing the volume of the pump chamber to increase and decrease. A pair of non-return check valves prevent reverse flow of the fluid. As described above, the second type of diaphragm pump works with volumetric positive displacement, but differs in that the prime mover of the diaphragm is neither oil nor air; but is electro-mechanical, working through a crank or geared motor drive. This method flexes the diaphragm through simple mechanical action, and one side of the diaphragm is open to air. The third type of diaphragm pump has one or more unsealed diaphragms with the fluid to be pumped on both sides. The diaphragm(s) again are flexed, causing the volume to change. When the volume of a chamber of either type of pump is increased (the diaphragm moving up), the pressure decreases, and fluid is drawn into the chamber. When the chamber pressure later increases from decreased volume (the diaphragm moving down), the fluid previously drawn in is forced out. Finally, the diaphragm moving up once again draws fluid into the chamber, completing the cycle. This action is similar to that of the cylinder in an internal combustion engine. Diaphragm pumps can be used for the transfer and dosing of liquids in many different applications. This article concentrates on fast running diaphragm liquid pumps. It describes the operating principle, construction and characteristics of the fore-mentioned pumps and shows the technical advantages. It concludes with an example of the use of such pumps in laboratory equipment. 4

Introduction The tasks of transferring and metering liquids are as old as humanity. From history we know that 3500 years ago the Babylonians used water-wheels for irrigating their fields; in the same period, the Egyptians used metering techniques in the manufacture of medicines. Even before the start of the Christian calendar, Archimedes had invented his screw pump, and the Greeks used piston pumps for handling water. With the alchemists, metering liquids became increasingly important.Today the liquid pump industry has developed to become a many-faceted branch of mechanical engineering, and offers an extensive range of products for applications ranging from analysis to water treatment. Types of pump For transferring and metering relatively small quantities of liquid, oscillating or rotary positive-displacement pumps are generally employed. The following types are oscillating positive-displacement pumps: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. diaphragm pumps piston pumps bellows pumps. Rotary positive-displacement pumps include: peristaltic pumps gear pumps rotary piston pumps screw pumps.

This article concentrates on diaphragm pumps for transferring and metering small quantities of liquids. How diaphragm pumps work

Fig. 1. Construction and operation of a diaphragm liquid pump. The operating principle and construction of a diaphragm liquid pump are extremely simple (see Fig. 1).The diaphragm is clamped at its circumference between the pump housing and the pump head. An eccentric imparts movement to the connecting rod, which in turn moves the diaphragm to and from. This produces a periodic change in volume of the working chamber, similar to a piston pump. In combination with automatic inlet and exhaust valves, this change in volume produces a pumping action. To prevent excessive stretching of the elastic diaphragm, a support is arranged below the diaphragm. Depending on the type of drive used, diaphragm liquid pumps can be categorised as high-speed and low-speed pumps. Low-speed diaphragm liquid pumps operate at speeds up to about 300 strokes per minute.The flow rate Q of such pumps enjoys a substantially linear relationship to the speed of rotation of the drive motor. This makes such low-speed diaphragm pumps especially suitable for metering in proportion to some process variable, or for execution of a pre-determined number of strokes on receipt of a particular signal. The flow rate can be varied, not only by changing the stroke of the diaphragm, but also in response to change in an electrical signal, such as frequency (ac motor) or voltage (dc motor). Many requirements for transfer and metering can be met with simpler means. These are potential applications for high-speed diaphragm liquid pumps. They operate preferably in the range 2500 to 3000 strokes/min, that is to say 10 6

times as fast as their slow-running counterparts. Their size, on the other hand, is in inverse proportion to their speed, so that very compact dimensions are one of the particular advantages of high-speed liquid diaphragm pumps. In a period in which miniaturisation is one of the main themes of technical development, this has time and again been shown to be an outstanding feature, particularly in comparison with other types of pump.

Fig. 2. Performance curves for high-speed liquid diaphragm pumps NF60/61 DC and NF60 E. The rest of this article concentrates mainly on high-speed liquid diaphragm pumps for transferring liquids. Thanks to their outstanding vacuum performance they are also often used for suction of liquids or air/liquid mixtures. The pumps are driven by ac or dc motors directly that is to say with no reduction gear between the two. Figure 2 shows two typical performance curves for a diaphragm liquid pump; it shows the flow rate in relation to the suction head/pressure height for two different drives. So that the same pump can produce different flow rates at given inlet and outlet conditions, this

manufacturer equips some of its products with an adjustable diaphragm support. With this patented system pumps can be set at the factory to a particular flow rate. It also provides a convenient way of compensating for the effects of the tolerances of components on performance. Pumps with resonance chamber system and integral over-pressure relief valve

Fig. 3. Mode of operation of resonance chamber. Because of the high speed (up to 3000 strokes /min) special attention must be paid to avoiding cavitation. For this reason this manufacturer fits most of its products with a patented resonance chamber system. The chamber is connected to the suction side of the pump and works as a pulsation damper; it restricts acceleration peaks in the liquid on the suction side of the pump, and thus restricts cavitation. Operation (see Fig. 3): in the resonance chamber (9), an additional diaphragm oscillates at the same frequency as the working diaphragm (1). During the exhaust stroke of the pump, the column of liquid on the suction side is not forced to stop abruptly, but can flow into the resonance chamber. 'On the next suction stroke, the column of liquid is not required to

accelerate from a stationary condition, instead the pump can use the speed remaining in the liquid. The effect is that the resonance chamber system produces significantly better pump operation.

Fig. 4. Mode of operation of over-pressure relief valve. There is a general danger with pumps that, because a filter is blocked or a valve accidentally closed, they may have to operate against a closed system and hence undesirable operating conditions. In such cases the pressure can exceed the permissible operating range of the pump.To prevent this happening, KNF has integrated an over-pressure relief valve into the pump head. A bypass, which connects the pressure port of the pump to the inlet side, is closed by a spring-loaded diaphragm (see Fig. 4). If the pressure on the pressure side of the pump reaches the setting of the over-pressure relief valve, this opens and circulates liquid through the internal bypass from the pressure side to the inlet side, and back to the pressure side. An adjusting screw enables the pressure to be easily and precisely set. Generally the overpressure relief valve should be set about 0.5 bar above the normal system pressure.

High-speed liquid diaphragm pumps can be used for metering as well as transferring liquids. Because of the large number of strokes per unit time, the relationship between number of strokes and flow rate is not truly linear. Metering is therefore not, as for,slow-running pumps, achieved by varying the motor speed, but, is dependent on running time or system volume; the pump runs for a precisely defined time, or until a level sensor is triggered. The precision of metering of a high-speed liquid diaphragm pump can be significantly increased if a solenoid valve is installed either before or after the pump, or if a pressure control valve is fitted to the outlet of the -pump. In this way, high-speed liquid diaphragm pumps can be successfully used for metering even very small quantities. In some applications the pulsation of a diaphragm pump is a disadvantage compared with rotary pumps. These problems can be reduced by using pumps with mcre than one head. The heads are then connected in parallel, and their eccentrics arranged so that they operate sequentially. Characteristics High-speed liquid diaphragm pumps have several important characteristics. They: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. are quiet. Typical applications are self-priming because they can also handle gases and can run dry, are maintenance-free, have long working lives, are reliable, thanks to their simple and sturdy construction, are chemically resistant; all medium-contact parts can be made can operate in any position, are very compact,

gas/liquid mixtures,

of chemically resistant materials such as PTFE, FFPM or PVDF,


An example of the use of high-speed liquid diaphragm pumps in laboratory equipment will be described briefly. In medical diagnosis, blood analysis has a very important role.Today, using photo spectrometry equipment, this analysis is almost entirely automatic. Blood samples are fed to the analyser in sample tubes. The analyser prepares the sample by treating it with certain reagents, and then examines its spectral properties. A computer processes the results, assigns them to the sample, and prints them.

Fig. 5. Photo-spectrometric blood analyser flow diagram for the liquid system. The sample is then passed to a disposal container, and the sample tube washed. In the apparatus described, four high-speed liquid diaphragm pumps are fitted. Figure 6 shows the flow diagram for the liquids system. The first pump feeds the reagents to the sample tube; it is controlled by a timer for metering purposes. The second pump empties the sample tube it operates as a transfer pump. Two further transfer pumps look after cleaning the sample tube. One of them feeds a detergent solution into the soiled tube, and the second sucks this solution out again. Because of the combination of properties described above, a highspeed liquid diaphragm pump has proved entirely suitable for all these functions.


Fig 6. High-speed liquid diaphragm pumps from KNF. Numerous further applications for high-speed liquid diaphragm pumps are to be found in the following fields: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. analysers repro equipment the cleaning industry laboratory equipment water treatment

Certainly the Babylonians, the ancient Egyptians, Archimedes, or the alchemists would be astonished by some of these technical solutions. But technical progress does not stop here. The trend to ever smaller products and smaller flow rates continues unabated. KNF Flodos announced a new, product of small size which will precisely meter micro-litre quantities. Applications Diaphragm pumps have good suction lift characteristics, some are low pressure pumps with low flow rates; others are capable of higher flows rates, dependent on the effective working diameter of the diaphragm and its stroke length. They can handle sludges and slurries with a good amount of grit and solid content. 1. 2. 3. 4. Diaphragm pumps have good dry running characteristics. Diaphragm pumps are low-shear pumps. Diaphragm pumps can be used to make artificial hearts. Diaphragm pumps can be up to 97% efficient. 12

5. 6. 7.

Diaphragm pumps have good self priming capabilities. Diaphragm Pumps can handle highly viscous liquids. Diaphragm Pumps are available for industrial, chemical and

hygienic applications

The Structure of a Diaphragm

The type of diaphragm determines to a great extent the performance of the pump. The patented structured diaphragm makes it possible to significantly reduce the size for a given performance. Diaphragm pumps for compressing and evaluating gases can be classified by the type of diaphragm they employ. It is the diaphragm that determines the performance of the pump. KNF 13

Neubergers development of the patented structured diaphragm can only be described as precision design. With a diaphragm separating the compression chamber from the mechanical parts and operating practically without friction, diaphragm pumps are completely oil-free. This makes them suitable for applications for which oillubricated pumps could not even be considered, for example:

Inhalers for medical purposes Analyzers and gas-samplers in the analysis field Vacuum evaporator in process engineering Stack gas analysis in environmental technology

Diaphragm Pump Advantages Apart from the wide range of potential uses, the diaphragm pump offers further advantages over oil-lubricated pumps. First of all there is the low maintenance requirement. Not only are oil changes not required, but also the simple design and small number of parts, reduce the need for maintenance. At the same time the simple design ensures high reliability. In addition the hermetically sealed compression chamber prevents losses of the gases or liquids being handled, and makes compression and evacuation of expensive, toxic inflammable, radio-active, or otherwise dangerous gases possible. Currently diaphragms can be divided into three groups:

Flat diaphragms Molded diaphragms Structured diaphragms

The Flat Diaphragm The simplest type of diaphragm the flat diaphragm - consists of a flat rubber plate. It is clamped art its edge between the crankcase and the pump head, and at its center to a rigid metal disc.


Top Surface of a KNF Flat Diaphragm PTFE-Coated with Clamping Disk A connecting rod imparts movement to the diaphragm. Depending on the expected duty, the diaphragm hay have reinforcing fabric vulcanized into it to carry the forces arising from pressure created in the gas. The advantages of this type of diaphragm in a pump are:

Simple and economical design Low wear Suitable for high pressure, if necessary this can be increased by Higher flow-rate

appropriate choice of reinforcing fabric

The disadvantages of the flat diaphragm lie in the metal clamping disc and screw head, which are of necessity situated in the compression chamber. Applications with corrosive or aggressive gases demand a better solution. Especially in the vacuum field a flat diaphragm is not the optimum solution. At top dead center, the clamp disc and its fastening give rise to gaps and recesses that increase the dead volume, so reducing the volumetric efficiency of the pump. These limitations of the flat diaphragm led to the development of the molded diaphragm. Molded Diaphragm In contrast to the flat diaphragm, which is stamped from a flat sheet of rubber, the molded diaphragm is manufactured by pressing the finished part in an axially symmetrical mold. To provide good elastic deformability, the thickness of the diaphragm is reduced towards its circumference. The threaded stud that projects from the lower side of the diaphragm secures it to the connecting rod. 15

The diaphragm presents an unbroken surface to the compression chamber. The contour of the pump here can be made to conform very precisely to the .form of the diaphragm at full stroke

Top Surface of a PTFE-Coated KNF Molded Diaphragm This means that the dead volume can be reduced to a minimum, so that compared with the flat diaphragm a lower ultimate vacuum is achieved. The unbroken surface of the molded diaphragm increases the gas-tightness. Only the joint formed by clamping the diaphragm between the crankcase and the pump head, and the permeability of the elastomer from which it is made, set a limit to the possible gas-tightness. Because the metal parts of the diaphragm are protected by a layer of rubber, the molded diaphragm is particularly important in applications with corrosive or chemically aggressive media. The smooth surface of the diaphragm makes it practicable to coat it, for example, with PTFE, to provide protection against highly aggressive substances. Now, if the components of the pump head are made from PTFE, the resulting pump is reliable, and resistant to chemicals. The advantages of the molded diaphragm are:

Simple and economical design Low wear Makes a low ultimate vacuum possible High gas-tightness Reliable, chemically resistant pump possible


Compared to the flat diaphragm, pump, a molded diaphragm pump of the same size and the same design life has a lower flow rate. Whereas, the central region of the flat diaphragm is rigid the pressure in the compression chamber deforms the molded diaphragm much more; this can result in up to 20% reduction in performance. If the stiff central part of the diaphragm were extended too far without reducing the size of the elastic part, the permissible stresses for the diaphragm material would be exceeded. The KNF Structured Diaphragm In the development of the structured diaphragm, the primary objective was to combine the advantages of the flat and molded diaphragms, and at the same time to eliminate the disadvantages. This was achieved by analyzing the stresses and led to the development of a structure for the underside of the diaphragm. By stiffening the diaphragm in the center it was possible to reduce the size of the vulcanized-in metal part significantly, compared with the molded diaphragm. These measures produce an average reduction of 15% in mechanical loading in the diaphragm, and reduce the effort needed to turn the pump.

Bottom Surface of aKNF Sturctured Diaphragm The result is a diaphragm with:

Simple and economical design Low wear Comparatively high pressure capability High flow rate A low ultimate vacuum


Chemical resistance High Efficiency

For many applications the miniaturization of the pump that the structured diaphragm makes possible is particularly important. The optimized diaphragm structure makes it possible to design a smaller diaphragm, so that the successor model of a pump with a flow rate of 5 standard litres of air per minute could be smaller in all the main dimensions. This new pump occupies only 63% of the volume of its predecessor. The user can reduce the space for the pump in his product by more than two-thirds. Naturally, when the volume is smaller the weight is reduced as well. By using the structured diaphragm the desire for increased performance without making the pump bigger can also be satisfied. Compared with a molded diaphragm pump, one fitted with a structured diaphragm can accommodate a longer stroke, with the same elastic deformation of the diaphragm material, and without compromising the mechanical data. At the same time less power is required to drive the pump. Combining as it does the advantages of flat and molded diaphragms, the new structured diaphragm represents a milestone in diaphragm pump technology. Pumps with structured diaphragms cannot only met the demands of existing fields of application better than was previously possible, but also fulfill the needs of completely new applications. In Summary

The flat diaphragm is, because of its simple construction, Metal parts in the compression chamber can be a disadvantage. The KNF-patented structured diaphragm has a decisive influence KNF Neuberger has managed to achieve the same performance Employing the molded diaphragm reduces wear and


on the size of a diaphragm pump.

from a volume only 1/2 that of its predecessor.

considerable improves gas-tightness.


Coating the diaphragm with PRFE, and making the pump head The patented structured diaphragm combines the advantages of Large-scale FEM analysis and stress calculations resulted in the

from PTFE provide for the highest chemical resistance.

molded and flat diaphragms.

structured diaphragm.

Its the Diaphragm that Does It


Characteristics determine areas of application for gas and vapor diaphragm pumps Diaphragm pumps are an attractive solution today for a wide range of applications, irrespective of whether corrosive or toxic media are being pumped. A particular role is played by the application-oriented design of the diaphragm and its careful manufacture. Diaphragm pumps for gas and vapor have a place in the analytical, medical, and process engineering markets, as well as in the laboratory. They can deliver media uncontaminated, have high gas tightness, and can be designed so that the parts coming in contact with the media are chemically resistant. Depending on the diaphragm type used, the properties and applications of these pumps can vary in considerable detail. There are three basic designs of diaphragm in use today: the flat diaphragm, the molded diaphragm, and the structured diaphragm.

Flat Diaphragm


The flat diaphragm is the classic diaphragm type, and consists of a rubber disk. The connection between the diaphragm and the connecting rod, which provides the up and down motion, is provided by a clamping disk, normally made of metal, and a screw which is guided through a hole in the center of the diaphragm (Fig. 1). Pumps with flat diaphragms provide high compression strength, because the connecting rod and the diaphragm support disk actually support the diaphragm. For vacuum applications, on the other hand, flat diaphragms are not the best choice, because they cannot achieve optimal vacuum. The geometric design of diaphragm, clamping disk, and compression chamber - in conjunction with the slight tilting motion of the diaphragm actuated by the connecting rod - results in a high clearance volume at the upper turning point of the diaphragm motion; the result of this is a dead volume on evacuation. In addition, the gas tightness of such diaphragm pumps has been shown to be unsatisfactory for many applications because, among other things, the gas can creep along at the connecting rod fastening screw into the pump chamber, and be admitted into the chamber. The leakage rate which can usually be achieved, normally 1 mbar 1/s, restricts the use of these pumps in the areas of analysis, chemistry, and medical technology. Another disadvantage of flat diaphragms is the poor resistance of the metal parts (clamping disk and screw head) to corrosive or aggressive gases. As a result, for chemically-resistant pump requirements, the diaphragm, the clamping disk and the screw head must be coated with chemically resistant materials such as PTFE. Care must be taken to avoid nicks in the coating when using tools to install or remove the metal clamping disk. Molded diaphragm With the molded diaphragm, developed at KNF Neuberger, the metal stud required to actuate the diaphragm is vulcanized into the center of the diaphragm and forms a rigid zone at that point (Fig. 2). This means that the side of the diaphragm located in the pumping chamber is fully enclosed. The pumping chamber can be well adapted to the contour of the actuated diaphragm, and the clearance volume of the pump is reduced, without the risk


of the diaphragm striking the pump head at the upper turning point of the movement. This results in a good vacuum. At the same time the closed surface of the diaphragm achieves very good gas tightness for the pump. In addition, with the molded diaphragm, reliable chemically-resistant pump designs for applications with corrosive or aggressive gases or vapors can be readily created. The metal stud of the pump is vulcanized within; in other words, covered by elastomer. The PTFE coating of metal parts, unlike flat diaphragm designs, is not necessary. The diaphragm itself can be provided with a protective coating against aggressive media, with the protective coating being permanently cross-linked to the elastomer diaphragm by vulcanization. These properties described elevate the molded diaphragm to a preferred status over the flat diaphragm. And, because the molded diaphragm does not have the rigid clamping disk and diaphragm support of the flat diaphragm, it suffers from restricted compression strength, something which is particularly relevant for compressors. Structured diaphragm The patented, structured diaphragm combines the advantages of both the flat and molded diaphragm, and at the same time largely eliminates the disadvantages from which both these diaphragm types suffer. As with the molded diaphragm, the structured diaphragm has the metal stud, required to actuate the diaphragm, vulcanized centrally into the diaphragm, where it forms a rigid zone. The side of the diaphragm located in the pumping chamber is, therefore, entirely enclosed. The difference is that the underside of the diaphragm is ribbed to accommodate the particular load to be imposed, and the diaphragm is stiffened in the center (Fig. 3). The advantages are reduced mechanical loading (and therefore less wear), smaller size, comparably high compression strength, and good delivery capacity. As with the molded diaphragm, the closed surface of the structured diaphragm allows for reliably chemically-resistant diaphragm designs to be created with no problems. Last but not least, very high gas tightness can also be achieved, particularly as compared with the flat diaphragm. In contrast with the


conventional molded diaphragm, a special design is available to improve the gas tightness of the structured diaphragm even more. In this case, the periphery of the structured diaphragm features a lip, which serves as a positive-fit seal at the clamping point between the pump housing and head. As a result of all these features, the leakage rate of a pump with a structured diaphragm is, as a rule, lower by a factor of 100 than a pump with a flat diaphragm. Development and manufacture It is only the development evolution, from the flat diaphragm, through the molded diaphragm, to the structured diaphragm which has made the versatile application of the diaphragm pump possible. For this reason, the demands on the diaphragms with regard to mechanical, chemical, and thermal loading have risen sharply. The simple rubber-component diaphragm has developed into a device which is designed by finite-element calculations, and undergoes very complex manufacturing processes. The challenge has been to create a rubber/metal connection between the diaphragm and the metal stud of the eccentric connection, which, despite the differing elasticity behavior of the materials, and despite the dynamic load during pump operation, allows a component with long service life to be produced. In addition to the search for suitable materials, the focus of attention for the diaphragm manufacturers, such as Freudenberg, was on optimizing the manufacturing process. A key feature in the performance of the diaphragms is a permanent, firm chemical bond between the PTFE film and the metal part on the one hand, and the elastomer on the other. In this case, it has proved possible, by matching suitable bonding agent systems to the materials available, to produce compounds in which the strength is greater than that of the elastomer.


Keaflex to make elastomer pump diaphragm for Salamander

UK-based Salamander Pumps has chosen James Walker Keaflex to manufacture elastomer diaphragms for its domestic water-pressure booster pumps. The ethylene propylene diaphragm is a component of the 1 litre pressure vessel that is used in the company's ESP CPV models which can boost the pressure of single showers or entire house-water systems. Tooling for the moulded part was designed by James Walker Keaflex and manufactured at its in-house tool shop. The multi-cavity design is manufactured to precise tolerances, and, after moulding, the diaphragms are post-cured to remove any volatile contaminants that could otherwise leach into the water, the company says. The high specification EP62/65 ethylene propylene elastomer used for the diaphragm was developed within the James Walker Group. Approved by the Water Regulations Advisory Scheme for use in hot and cold potable water at temperatures up to 85C, the material meets the requirements of British Standard BS6920. EP62/65 is said to be suitable for other uses in the water industry, such as gaskets and O-rings. EP62 is also available with increased hardness, and can be used in applications that require greater mechanical strength, such as tap washers and ball valve discs.


Ethylene propylene diaphragms manufactured by James Walker Keaflex for Salamander Pumps for use in its domestic water-pressure booster pumps.


Sample system design and diaphragm pumps

The design of sampling systems can be influenced by many factors, including cost, size, maintenance needs, source conditions and analyser requirements. Dan Martin, of diaphragm pump manufacturer Air Dimensions, discusses several common aspects of sample system design, taking into account the operating characteristics of a diaphragm pump, and choices that will improve system performance, lessen measurement errors and reduce pump maintenance. Sample system design can take many forms, influenced by factors including cost, size, maintenance, source conditions and analyser requirements to mention a few. Illustrated here are a few techniques that are commonly used in many sampling systems; this list is not complete, but serves as an introduction to the topic of system design. The first section looks at sample line sizing and the location of the pump relative to the sample source connection tap. Next, the effect of pump pulsation and its amelioration are discussed, together with the use of filters. The final section reviews the various types of flow and pressure control methods. Pump location A sample pump is required if the process pressure is too low to provide adequate pressure for measurement. The location of the pump and the selection of line size are the most important factors when dealing with lowpressure samples. This may be of little concern for short line lengths, but when long distances are involved, this can be a serious and expensive mistake if not evaluated correctly. Piping design is best illustrated by the example in Figure 1. For the illustrated system, the analyser requires a flow rate of 10 standard litres per minute (SLPM) at an absolute pressure of 14.7 psia (= 0.101 MPa), i.e. atmospheric pressure. The process pressure is atmospheric, that is 14.7 psia, and the sample line length is 300 ft (c. 91.5 m). The filter pressure drop is assumed to be negligible. 26

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Figure 1. The location of the pump and the sample line size are the most important factors when designing piping to deal with low-pressure samples. There are two main choices to be made: the sample line size, and the location and selection of the pump. Table 1 illustrates how sample-line pressure drop is affected by pump location and sample line size. Table 1. Sample tubing characteristics for flow rate of 10 SLPM

Size (inches) 1/4 0.035 wall 3/8 0.035 wall

ID (in) 0.180

Line pressure drop (psi) position A P = (20.0 14.7) = 5.3

Line pressure drop (psi) position B P = (14.7 7.3) = 7.4


P = (15.0 14.7) = 0.3

P = (14.7 14.3) = 0.4

Full-size table Note: Line pressures are expressed as absolute values measured in psia. The selection of pump position A (Figure 1) is dependent on flow-rate capacity for inlet pressure equal to the ambient pressure. The outlet pressure is the sample-line back pressure. For position B, the selection is dependent on the reduced pressure at the pump inlet (due to sample line loss) and the required flow rate with the pump outlet at atmospheric pressure. 27

In summary Comparing tubing pressure drops for pressurized and vacuum sample-line conditions illustrates the importance of line size. In addition, a larger displacement pump may be required for smaller line sizes because of vacuum conditions and decreased density. Vapour condensation may be a problem if the pump is located a long distance from the process inlet and sample pressure is reduced below gas vapour pressure. Final selection of line size and pump location is affected by many factors, including local codes, environmental considerations, system design and installation requirements. Pump pulsations The effect of pump pulsation is a subject not often considered in sampling system design. The connection at the diaphragm pump inlet will see a suction vacuum for one-half of the motor shaft rotation followed by no flow for the remaining half of the rotation the exhaust pulse (flow) portion of the pump cycle. As a result, both the inlet and exhaust strokes cause peaked flows several times greater that the average flow rate specified for the pump. This raises several concerns for the selection of components (line size, filter, flow indicators, etc.) for optimum design. The inlet and outlet conditions are depicted in Figure 2.

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Figure 2. Typical pump inlet and outlet pulsation pattern.


Inlet pulsation Filters are used as protective devices in most sampling systems. A filter is typically installed before the pump to remove contamination from the sampling system. Placing the filter close to the pump inlet will have the effect of a pulsation dampener, where the inlet suction vacuum is stored in the filter body (Figure 3). This will reduce the vacuum and flow-rate peaks and increase the average pump flow rate. Overall system performance is thus improved at little or no additional cost.

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Figure 3. Filters used as pulsation dampeners. Outlet pulsation In addition, placing a filter at the outlet will reduce the amplitude of the pump outlet pressure pulse. This is important when flowmeters or other pressuresensitive instruments are used, as pulsation will give false readings. Balanced stroke design A two-head opposed-stroke pump will greatly reduce the effects of pump pulsation. This pump design utilizes two heads oriented 180 out of phase; as one head begins the suction stroke, the other head is starting its exhaust stroke (Figure 4).

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Figure 4. Ideal dual-head pulsation pattern. When the inlet and outlet ports of the two heads are connected in parallel, there will be continuous action at the interconnect junctions and no dead time between inlet or outlet pulses. The result of this design is smoother gas flow with greatly reduced pulsation effects at the inlet and outlet connections; in addition, sample-line pressure losses are correspondingly reduced because of the reduced peaked and nearly-constant flow rate. Use of a two-head pump with balanced pump stroke design will be of particular interest in those systems where pump selection is marginal, or system design is extremely sensitive to pulsating flows. In some cases, a smaller two-head, balanced-stroke pump will give better performance than a more-expensive, single-head pump. Flow & pressure control Following are several basic control systems that are used to regulate flow and pressure. Control valve The simplest form of flow control is a manual throttle valve (TV) in series with the pump. This may be located before the pump configuration A or after the pump configuration B (Figure 5).

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Figure 5. Flow control valve placement. (FI = flow instrument or flowmeter.)


In configuration A, the flow rate is reduced as a result of the increased restriction introduced by the throttle valve, resulting in pressure reduction at the pump inlet. With the TV closed, the gauge pressure, Pa, at position A can decrease to less than 28 in Hg vacuum (depending on pump capability). In configuration B, flow rate is again reduced as a result of the increased restriction by TV, but this has the effect of increasing pressure at the pump outlet up to a maximum of the pump capacity. Depending on the pump characteristics, the increase in pressure Pb may range from 30 psig to 100 psig or more. Excessive pressure on the pump diaphragm (configuration B) will result in increased diaphragm and bearing stress, reducing pump life and increasing service requirements. However, locating the valve before the pump inlet avoids the condition of high diaphragm pressure. Relief valve flow control Use of a relief valve (RV) reduces the high-pressure pulses on the pump diaphragm, as in the above case where a throttle valve is located at the pump outlet (Figure 6). Flow pulses will therefore be reduced. The return line can either be connected back to the process or returned to the pump inlet. Connecting the return line back to the pump inlet is generally the lower cost alternative because the distance to the process can be much greater.

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Figure 6. Flow control via use of a relief valve. Constant outlet pressure


Using a back-pressure regulator (BPR) will provide better pressure regulation than a relief valve. A BPR located before the analyser will provide the best pressure regulation (Figure 7). Adding one or more filters is optional, but will give additional pulsation reduction and therefore also help system performance.

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Figure 7. Pressure control using a back-pressure regulator (BPR). Constant system flow rate Using a downstream pressure regulator (DPR) with a throttling valve configured as shown in Figure 8 provides a constant flow rate independent of the pressure upstream of the pump. Downstream pressure is assumed to be constant. This design may be used for systems that have constant time delay or constant response-time requirements.

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Figure 8. Flow control using a downstream pressure regulator (DPR). Conclusion 32

The above discussion only touches on a few basic methods and is by no means complete, but is intended to provide a starting point for system design using diaphragm pumps. There are many approaches to sampling system design, some better than others, but, in general, the simplest ways are the best

Selecting the Proper Diaphragm Pressure Control Valve


FDV Valves in PVDF materials 1. How It Works The possible uses of the pressure control valve are widely varied and well established. It can be used in two possible ways depending on the application: Pressure Control Valve Maintain constant back pressure for exact flow rates under free flow conditions, with positive pressure on the inlet side or with varying back pressure, or with the operation under vacuum etc. Bypass Valve Serves as a safety device for protection of the pump, motor, pipework, vessels and other accessories. Installed as a bypass valve, it prevents excessive pressure build up in the system caused by dirt, misuse or other problems. The pressure control valve FDV30/1.30 are able to handle air, gas and liquids. The pressure control valve can used with KNF products as well as other pump systems. The FDV30/1.30 series are recommended for use with the following pumps. Metering pumps - all FM Products Transfer pumps NF10, NF30, NF1.30 Vacuum pumps. Up to a max flowrate of: CALL KNF Note! Pressure control valves are not absolutely tight shut-off valves. They should always be installed on the pressure side of the pump.


2. Construction The FDV pressure control valve is based on the principle of the diaphragm valve. The essential components are the lower housing, the upper housing, the spindle and the diaphragm. The required pressure is achieved by adjusting the tension in the spring. The spring tension exerts pressure on the diaphragm with is then transferred to the fluid system. By turning the spindle clockwise the opening pressure increases at a given flow rate and by turning it counter-clockwise the opening pressure decreases. A locking nut prevents adjustment from the set position. In the normal position the diaphragm rests on both of the ports and the system is then closed. When the pressure produced by the pump exceeds the pre-set opening pressure the diaphragm is pushed open and the medium can flow. The pressure control valve is now in the working mode and is opened.
Index 10 Lower housing 20 Upper housing 30 Protective surface of diaphragm 40 Lip diaphragm 50 Flexi-washer 60 Support plate 70 Washer 80 Spring 90 Washer 100 Shaft spindle 110 Locking nut 120 Screw

The parts in contact with the media are the diaphragm and the lower housing. They can be produced in a variety of materials which can be selected according to the liquid or gas to be transferred. The following material combinations are available: Base Model Code Head components Material (liquid contacting parts) 35

FDV30KP, FDV1.30KP lower hosing PP diaphragm EPDM

FDV30KV, FDV1.30KV lower housing PP diaphragm Viton FDV30KT, FDV1.30KT lower housing PP diaphragm Viton/FFKM FDV30TV, FDV1.30TV lower housing PVDF diaphragm Viton FDV30TT, FDV1.30TT lower housing PVDF diaphragm Viton/FFKM The upper housing which is not in contact with the media is produced in Ryton for all types. 3. Technical Data The correct control valve is selected according to the following criteria: 1. 2. 3. 4. Pressure Flow rate Aggressive nature of the media Size

Note that the pre-set opening pressure should not exceed the maximum pressure of the pump. Other important factors include connecting sizes, overall geometry, temperature etc. The following table assists in making the correct selection. Following base models are available: Parameter FDV30 Z FDV1.30 Z


Adj. pressure range bar g 0.2 0 2.5 2.0 - 6.5 Standard pressure (factory set) bar g 0.5 3.0 Max. flow with liquids ml/min 600 600 Max. flow with air/gases l/min Max. environment temp C 80 80 Max. media Temp C 80 80 Threads for hose connector in. G 1/8" G 1/8" Weight (depends on model) grams 50 - 60 50 - 60 The above flow rates should not be exceeded. If required the factory pre-set opening pressure can be adjusted to other values. The adjusted opening pressure will be noted on the identification plate. Dimension Drawing

4. Options The pressure control valve is also available with other options:

turning knob instead of locking nut other materials / combination with hose connectors

5. Applications Pressure control valves are used in diverse operations and can therefore undertake several functions: 1. As pressure control valve for precise dosing in systems with

fluctuating pressure, for operating in a vacuum and for operating with back pressure on the suction side.



As bypass valve to prevent the build up of excessive pressure on

the operating side of the system, for protection of the pump, pipework, vessels, glassware, etc. 3. Anti-injection function to avoid unintended injection of liquid when metering into pipework at high flow rates. Examples of applications 1. Pressure control valve The precision of diaphragm pumps can be influenced by other factors such as system pressures. The following illustrations demonstrates the use of the control valve in achieving precise metering. a. Operation in a system with fluctuating back pressure Varying back pressure can significantly influence the performance and thus the precision of the flow rate. The use of the pressure control valve promotes more stable system pressure. The pressure variation is reduced and so precise dosing is guaranteed.

1a. Flow diagram

b. Operation with vacuum on the outlet of the pump When it is required to meter into a vacuum on the outlet side of the pump, use of the pressure control valve restricts the free flow of the media through the pump. Without a pressure control valve, the vacuum on the outlet side of the pump would cancel the effect of the pump and the media would flow unaided through the pump. This applies whether the pump is being used or not. 38

1b. Flow diagram c. Operation with positive pressure on the suction side of the pump If positive pressure exists on the suction side of the pump, accurate dosing is not possible. Even when the pump is not being used, it is still possible for the pressure head to force the media through the pump. The pressure control valve will withstand the higher pressure therefore guaranteeing optimum performance.

1c. Flow diagram 2. Bypass function The bypass valve serves to restrict the build up of excessive pressure on the pump outlet side of the system. Therefore the pump, pipework and motor are adequately protected against malfunction or failures as a result of high pressure build up. In the case of excessive back pressure on the outlet side of the pump, the bypass valve opens and the media is recirculated. The media recirculates and the pump is protected until the restriction is removed.


A bypass valve should also be used if the pump has to operate against a closed system on the pressure side. Pressurized measuring systems, pipework, receivers etc. can also be protection against excessive pressure build up by using the bypass valve. If excessive pressure build up occurs, the media will flow back through the valve and into a storage vessel.

2. Flow diagram 3. Anti-injection function When pumping into a tube that contains a continuously high speed of flow of media, venturi action can occur. This means that when the pump is stationary, suction produced by the fast flow of liquid in the tube overcomes the resistance of the valves and pulls the dosing medium through the pump. This venturi action has a negative affect on the dosing accuracy. With the built in diaphragm pressure control valve, the venturi action can be stopped. Furthermore the pressure control valve function assists the dosing accuracy even though the pipework pressure may vary.

3. Flow diagram 40

4. Other functions Further uses are: Improved sealing against back flow, for example in analyzers Over-pressure valves in liquid, air/gas systems Charging pipework with constant pressure without the flow being drawn off through the bypass valve

The Logical Path - The Application of Ceramics to Diaphragm Pumps

To achieve the highest possible safety in service, pumps employed in the chemical industry must be gas-tight, chemically resistant and maintenancefree. To avoid unwelcome chemical reactions and to maintain the purity of the gases, contamination by the pumping process must be prevented. Clean vacuum is indispensable for many applications. 41

For these extreme conditions a special type of positive displacement pump, the diaphragm pump, has become an important asset for many users. The principles of design of the diaphragm pump make it gas-tight and absolutely oil-free. The use of PTFE and ceramic ensure excellent chemical resistance.

FT pumps with flat diaphragms The first step on the path to diaphragm pumps with almost universal chemical resistance was taken several years ago. The FT pumps were designed for small and medium flow-rates and represented a significant innovation at the time. FT stands for Full-Teflon and thus for the best possible chemical resistance. The idea of making all the gas-contact parts of a diaphragm pump from PTFE was a challenge to the design and development engineers. The disadvantages of this material were common knowledge but its disadvantages just as well know. It is a property of PTFE that it deforms or creeps under constant tensile or compressive loads. In manufacture it is a disadvantage that PTFE cannot be injection molded because it has practically no melting point. A primary goal was to devise a diaphragm which fulfilled the following criteria: 1. 2. Chemical resistance, Elastic de-formability,



Low permeability to gases.

These conditions can only be met by a PTFE/elastomer combination, the first attempt employed the customary flat diaphragm abut coated with a layer of PTFE (Fig.1a). The diaphragm retainer-plate was made of steel and coated with a fluorinated polymer to provide the necessary chemical resistance. This design, however, has intrinsic problems. The PTFE layer experiences severe strain because it is rigidly restrained by clamping with the retainer plate. This problem can be relieved by reducing the stroke, but this in turn means that the pump must be larger for a given flow rate. To prevent damage to the PTFE layer the diaphragm retainer plate must be carefully radiused and the radii must be very well blended into their neighboring surfaces. This makes it relatively expensive to produce. Even with the best possible design this concept involves a certain dead volume which has an unfavorable effect on the attainable ultimate vacuum. High gas-tightness demands that there is a minimum number of gas seals between the compression space and the world outside. Leaks, when they occur, do so generally at such points, and so a diaphragm with a central hole was not considered an optimum solution. When operating under extreme conditions a diaphragm may deteriorate or be damaged. In this case it must be changed and ease of servicing becomes important to reduce downtime. There was no satisfactory solution to this problem with the retainer plate design. If the retainer plate was plastic-coated the holes in its upper surface could not be used to tighten or loosen it because this would immediately result in damage to the plastic coating by the pegs of the spanner employed and loss of protection against chemical attack. To overcome this problem it is necessary to devise some means of clamping which can be tightened from the crankcase side of the diaphragm, this is possible but decidedly cumbersome. FT pumps with molded diaphragms Finally all these considerations led to another type of diaphragm. In the new range of FT Pumps the flat diaphragm was replaced by the molded diaphragm.


The molded diaphragm consists of a neoprene body, which is vulcanized under precisely defined pressure and temperature conditions simultaneously bonded to a chemically-treated PTFE film and the steel carrier component, to ensure permanent and reliable bonds. This compact diaphragm element can, after removal of the head, be removed and refitted by simply screwing it into or out of the con-rod. The curved form of the upper surface of the diaphragm in designed to conform to the shape of the head with the least possible dead volume so as to provide excellent ultimate vacuum. Since it has no central perforation, this diaphragm provides practically a hermetic seal between compression space and crankcase. The head, the valve discs and the valve bodies of the FT range are made from PTFE . As already mentioned, the major disadvantage of PTFE is its tendency to creep. Over a period of time the PTFE molecules reposition themselves to relieve internal stresses so that clamping forces between two components reduce with time. The design compensates for this effect by clamping the PRGE in a "sandwich" between a metal plate and the crankcase and employing disc springs to maintain clamping force when the PTFE relaxes. The diaphragm pumps of the FT range have flow-rates between 10 and 60 NI-min1 are used mainly in the laboratory where, because of their versatility, they have found wide acceptance. For chemical plant and pre-production trials these flow-rates are often not sufficient. For removal and circulation of aggressive gases, volume flows in the region of 100 to 250 NI-min-1 are required. To reduce the flow losses in the connecting pipe work and to keep the number of connections (and hence potential leaks) as small as possible , diaphragm pumps with high flow-rates should not have more than two heads. Ceramic Materials The successful path which employs PTFE as a practically universal chemically resistant material for the head parts of diaphragm pumps has been extended by the use of ceramics. The excellent chemical resistance allied to hardness, strength and wear resistance make this material particularly attractive for larger diaphragm heads. Due to the limitations that the diaphragm imposes on


the stroke, diaphragm compressors and vacuum pumps require a large effective diaphragm diameter, which means that the diaphragm head must fulfill particularly exacting conditions with regard to strength and stability. Tight tolerances characterize this component which has an important influence on the ultimate vacuum pump . Only tight tolerances can ensure a consistently small dead volume and thus consistent performance in series production. For this PTFE cannot be used for larger diaphragm heads. Up to now its brittleness together with the difficulty of manufacture and machining have discouraged designers from using ceramic parts. In recent years there has been much progress in the technology of ceramic manufacture and aluminum oxide ceramic manufacture and aluminum oxide ceramic has become particularly significant. By optimizing the time and temperature of sintering as well as the purity and particle size of raw material, quality has been improved and costs reduced. Precision parts, and the diaphragm head is one of them, must be machined with diamond tools after sintering. Since ceramics have great compressive strength but are very sensitive to tensile loads the designer must take care that the component is practically only subjected to compressive loads. The molded diaphragm used with the FT head is also used for the ceramic head pump. Even in this much larger version it can be made to conform to the head shape. The valve discs and valve bodies are again of PTFE. Ceramic combined with PTFE has made possible the development of a pump with a high flow-rate and first-class resistance to chemicals. This new development of single and twin-headed pumps with ceramic diaphragm heads has extended the performance range of chemical resistant pumps by a factor of 3, to 130 NI-min-1 for single or 230 NI-min-1 for twin heads respectively, and has thus opened these products to applications which were closed to the FT range. If service trials are successful, ceramics could start a materials-led technological revolution in engine design. Practically every motor manufacturer is today testing ceramics for his future products. In the field of diaphragm pumps the future has already begun.


Getting Pumped Up on Diaphragms by Design

All diaphragm process pumps for use with gases and vapors share certain fundamental characteristics, including relatively simple construction, oil-free operation without maintenance, high gas tightness, and uncontaminated delivery of the gas. Beyond the basics, though, specialized performance can be realized from diaphragm pumps due to their design versatility and application adaptability.


Diaphragm pumps transfer, compress, recirculate, or evacuate gases or vapors in industry and research applications for medical technology, analytical instrumentation, control engineering, chemical and process engineering, or in the laboratory, among others. The proper design and selection of a pumps diaphragm and how effectively a pump can be customized to handle the demands ultimately will govern success in an application. Diaphragms by design The diaphragm primarily functions to displace the working gases from the pumps compression chamber. Integration into a pump is relatively simple: The elastic diaphragm is clamped pressure-tight between the pump head and the housing to separate the transfer compartment from the housings interior. The diaphragm then is connected pressure-tight to a connecting rod. In operation, the drive in the interior of the housing reciprocates the connecting rod, which causes the diaphragm to move up and down. In the downward stroke, the suction created in the pump chamber causes the inlet valve to open, allowing flow into the chamber. In the upward stroke, the pressure caused by the rising diaphragm causes the outlet valve to open, allowing flow out of the chamber. The most common standard diaphragm designs include flat, molded, and structured. The simples and least expensive is the flat diaphragm, which is essentially an elastomer disk. The connection between the diaphragm and the connecting rod is provided by a clamping disk (usually metal) and a screw guided through a hole in the center of the diaphragm. Pumps with flat diaphragms provide high compression strength, because the connecting rod and the diaphragmsupport disk contribute support. Among tradeoffs, however, pumps with flat diaphragms will not typically achieve optimal vacuums; uncoated metal parts will be prone to corrosive or aggressive gases; and relatively poor gas tightness can be expected, leading to higher leakage rates (normally 1 mbar 1/s) and restricting their application potential in the areas of analysis, chemistry, and medical technology.


Molded diaphragms represent a significant improvement by fully enclosing the side of the diaphragm located in the pumping chamber. This is accomplished by vulcanizing the metal stud (required to actuate the diaphragm) into the center of the diaphragm, which forms a rigid zone at that point and eliminates any need for a rigid clamping disk (and possible leakage path). With this design the pumping chamber adapts to the contour of the actuated diaphragm and the clearance volume of the pump is reduced without the risk of the diaphragm striking the pump head at the upper turning point of the movement. An ideal vacuum is created and the closed surface of the diaphragm promotes superior gas tightness for the pump. In addition, this design inherently allows for the development of chemically resistant versions without a need to coat metal parts; the vulcanized metal stud of the pump is already covered by elastomer. For applications that will experience corrosive or aggressive gases or vapors, added protection for the diaphragm can be provided with an appropriately enabling coating. One noteworthy tradeoff: The lack of the flat diaphragms rigid clamping disk and other support can restrict the compression strength critical for compressor applications. Structured diaphragms combine the advantages of both the flat and molded types and dispatch many of the drawbacks. As with the molded diaphragm, the metal stud required to actuate the diaphragm is vulcanized centrally into the diaphragm, where it forms a rigid zone, and the side of the diaphragm located in the pumping chamber becomes entirely closed. The difference with the patented structured diaphragm is that its underside is ribbed to accommodate the particular load to be imposed and the diaphragm is stiffened in the center. The outcome: Reduced mechanical loading (and less wear), smaller size (for more compact designs), comparably higher compression strength, and good flow capacity. Standard structured diaphragms exhibit extremely high gas tightness (which can be improved upon with special designs) and will demonstrate significantly lower leakage rates (reduced by a factor of 100 compared with flat diaphragm pumps). Variations on a theme


Regardless of industry, evolving applications for process pumps have imposed increasing demands on diaphragms and their capability to satisfy everburgeoning mechanical, chemical, and thermal loading requirements. In response, special versions can offer properties tailored to application parameters. Among them: Gas tight diaphragm pumps seal exposed areas with O-rings to achieve dramatically lower leak rates (5 x 10-3 mbar l/s to 5 x 10-6 mbar/s). These can prove especially useful in applications involving poisonous or radioactive gases, whose traces in the surrounding air could endanger workers and the environment. Corrosion-Resistant Considerations Corrosion-resistant diaphragm pumps benefit from combining high-grade steels and solid PTFE (or other inert materials for the wetted head portion) with a laminated layer of corrosion-resistant material over the diaphragm. Such a combination imparts mechanical and thermal resistance, resistance to corrosion, and high tensile strength and resistance to pressure. By laminating the PTFE, pumps can become more flexible and exhibit longer service life. The high-grade steels will equip the suction channel and the output channel of the head parts with robust threads. With secure and reliable screw joint connections, pumps can greatly resist pressure and significantly lower the potential for leaks. Heated-Head Sampling Pumps Heated diaphragm pumps will be specified where a small cooling down of the working gas leads to condensing out of parts of the gases, which can distort measurement results if the gases are transferred as samples. In order to prevent such condensation, the sample gas must be guided via a heated pipeline and the pump head, too, must be heated. An electric heating element installed in the pump head does the job. (The current supply to the heating element can be switched off using a thermal switch attached to the head or, as a recent innovation, temperature sensors can be mounted on the head to


regulate electronically.) The heated head offers a corollary advantage by keeping the gas dry and preventing the formation of corrosive compounds in the pump chamber. Diaphragm pumps with explosion-proof AC motors offer solutions in potentially hazardous locations, such as for applications in the chemical, mining, hydrocarbon processing, plastics, and petroleum industries. Specialty pumps for compliance with Class 1, Division 1, Groups C & D and ATEX hazardous locations have been engineered to deliver high performance and long service life during continuous, heavy-duty operation. Double Diaphragm Safety Pumps Double diaphragm pumps pair a safety diaphragm with a working diaphragm to safeguard applications where hazardous, toxic, or otherwise harmful (or valuable) gases must be transferred. Such applications raise the bar on the demands for gas tightness and leakage prevention and have been commonly engaged for decades to monitor emissions at nuclear power plants. Together with additional sealing rings, a double diaphragm systems arrangement enhances gas tightness with leak rates as low as < 6 x 10-6 mbar l/s. (In very rare cases, should the working diaphragm become damaged, the pumped medium will not escape but will be captured in the intermediate space between the two diaphragms.) The safety diaphragm is subject only to low mechanical and thermal loads during pump operation; the working diaphragm is elastically distorted and warmed by the compression process. A rupture of the working diaphragm will easily be detected through a sudden and dramatic drop in the pumps pumping or compression capacity. If the pump is generating only low pressure, a sensor can be fitted to monitor the intermediate area between the working diaphragm and safety diaphragm to detect any damage to the working diaphragm. Suitable pressure and gas sensors can be specified for this task. Footnote: As all these designs suggest, the simple rubber-component diaphragm has evolved into a device supported by finite-element calculations and complex manufacturing processes. With all the choices and capabilities to


customize, users can benefit from partnering at the outset with an experienced manufacturer to develop the best-suited diaphragm pump for the application.

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. article by Werner Trares and Erwin Hauser

6. 7. 8. 9.

article by Elsevier Ltd article by KNF Flodos R&D Center, Switzerland article by Erwin Hauser, KNF Neuberger GmbH article by Richard J. Aerts, Process Products

Engineer for KNF Neuberger, Inc 10. article by Erwin Bolt, KNF Flodos AG