Peristaltic pumps – advantages and applications

Published: 22-Feb-2012

Contamination-free pumping makes peristaltic pumps particularly suitable for use in high purity applications

Peristaltic pumps are suitable for dispensing, metering and general transfer applications. Typically, peristaltic tubing pumps offer flow rates as low as 0.0007 mL/min to 45 litres/min and are able to generate pressures up to 8.6 bar (125 psi).

Peristaltic pumps confine the media to the tubing, so that the pump cannot contaminate the fluid and the fluid cannot contaminate the pump. This contamination-free pumping makes peristaltic pumps particularly suitable for use in high purity applications, including the transfer or dosing of chemicals and additives in food, pharmaceutical and semiconductor applications.

In addition, as the media is confined to the tubing, a peristaltic pump offers easy maintenance and reduced downtime compared with other pumping technologies.

Peristaltic pumps use flexible tubing to run through rollers in the pump head. As fluid goes through the pump head, packets of fluids are formed. Flow rate is determined by the size of the packets and the speed of the rollers turning. By controlling the size of the tubing and the speed of the pump head accurate metering of the media can be achieved.

Suitable for use in labs, pilot plants and process applications, peristaltic pumps are available in various configurations, from low-cost fixed-speed pumps to advanced controlled models suitable for critical metering and dispensing applications.

Advantages for peristaltic pumps

  • The only part of a peristaltic pump that comes in contact with the liquid is the tubing. This maintains the sterility of fluid and the pump
  • More than 20 tubing formulations and sizes are available for peristaltic pumps for excellent compatibility with a variety of liquids
  • Self priming - peristaltic pumps can draw fluid into the tubing when starting dry, up to 8.8 m suction lift. Other pumps require user to fill pump and suction line with fluid before use which can be inconvenient and also create potential for hazardous spills or contamination
  • Gentle pumping action - low shear - makes a peristaltic pump ideal for handling cells and large proteins, as the pumping action will not damage the content
  • Variable speed options available on some peristaltic pumps, making those ideal for dosing applications
  • The fluid does not contact the peristaltic pump so there are no parts to clean such as valves, diaphragms, seals etc. All you have to do is clean or replace the tubing. This easy tubing replacement means reduced maintenance times
  • A peristaltic pump is non-siphoning which means that they prevent back flow into the system. This promotes accuracy during dispensing

Typical applications for peristaltic pumps

  • Juice production
  • Pizza sauce dispensing
  • Vitamin A & D injection
  • Aspiration of tissue culture medium
  • Circulation of cell suspension in fermentation
  • Cosmetic dispensing
  • Harvesting cell media
  • Manufacturing IV bag dispensing
  • Nutrient supply for cultures
  • Spray coating dispensing
  • Sterilised media dispensing
  • Ultrafiltration
  • Acid/base dispensing
  • Adhesives for cement
  • Circuit board manufacturing
  • Dispensing glue emulsions
  • Transfer of fuels and lubricants

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