With all three branches of government – federal, state and local – working hard to drive the economy, it looks like Australia’s 4.5% GMP is in the bag says Australian business Aussie Pumps. Projects such as Badgerys Creek are “proliferating and mining, exploration and construction is bringing new life into many regional centres”.
Even country sub-divisions are blossoming as the six year drought is becoming a memory. This is good news for concrete manufacturers, the mainstay of Australia’s construction industry. Prediction are, says Aussie Pumps, that this year we’ll pour up to 3.3 million cubic metres of concrete as new projects get underway.
BATCH PLANT RELIABILITY, CUT CONCRETE COSTS
One Australian Pump supplier, Australian Pump Industries, has become the prime specialist in supplying batch plants with reliable pumps for this tough and demanding application.
“We know the conditions that batch plant pumps have to endure,” says Aussie Pumps’ product manager, Mood Ellahi. “We’ve found that Aussie GMP heavy-duty cast-iron semi-trash pumps can outperform and outlast submersible pumps.”
Aussie GMP semi trash pumps are available in a wide range from 2-inch in both high and low pressure pumps, all the way through to big 6-inch long coupled motor pumps, capable of handling up to 4,500 litre per minute.
Australian Pump, known in the industry as Aussie Pumps, has worked closely with big and small concrete producers to help improve batch plant productivity. Large capacity semi trash and trash pumps are available from the company in both electric and diesel drive configurations.
Pumps with capacities of up to 6,000 lpm are part of the range. Although pumps are designed for semi trash applications, they are suitable for pumping abrasive liquids. The Aussie GMP product line offers simple self-priming cast iron construction and a choice between big open non-clog style cast iron impellers and 316 stainless steel equivalents.
A recent addition to the range were high head trash pumps that will lift water out of a sump through a vertical lift of six metres but, also have the capability of pumping up to a 70 metre head, making them ideal for batch water systems. The pumps are mounted above the sump where they can be easily serviced in the event of a failure.
Being trash pumps, they offer a front clean-out port mounted below the suction inlet. That means that the pumps can be cleaned out without having to uncouple pipework or remove the pump from the sump, as is required with submersibles.
“We’re finding more and more batch plants seeing the attraction of these big surface mounted cast iron pumps,” says Mood.
CONTINUOUS PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT
Although the pumps are manufactured in Northern Italy (in one of the most advanced pump-works in Europe) a lot of the design work is done in Australia. Aussie Pumps’ engineers worked with the concrete industry and associated quarrying operations to better understand the requirements of the market.
“We were surprised to find that many highly experienced engineers and plant managers didn’t clearly understand pump selection and application,” says Aussie Pumps’ chief engineer, John Hales. “For example, there was little understanding of the advantages of surface mounted self-priming trash pumps.”
An example of this is the principle of the self-priming pumps. Aussie’s GMP range are designed with an integrated water tank built into the pump like a pair of big shoulders. The pump also has a high-quality check valve, weighted so that it hangs shut in the event of the pump being filled with water prevents backflow.
To prime, all the operator needs to do is fill the pump bowl with water, through a top mounted priming plug, and then start the motor. As the power kicks in, the water is expelled through the discharge port of the pump, creating a vacuum inside the casing.
“The vacuum created acts like a straw, drawing the liquid up through the suction and into the pump bowl where it is in turn is expelled through the discharge by the heavy-duty cast-iron, or cast 316 stainless steel impeller. The beauty of the system is its simplicity. There is nothing to go wrong, no priming devices,” says Hales.
HIGH HEAD, TOO
Using one of these three phase motor driven two, three or 4-inch pumps, provides a degree of versatility and in the event of pump failure, no need to drag the pump out of the pit (as is needed with submersibles). The pumps feature stainless steel wear plate, mounted inside the pump body as well as a silicon carbide mechanical seal.
This combination of features and benefits, and particularly the high performance, makes them ideal for batching and a number of other applications in or around the plant.