Petrochemical and process plants globally are benefitting from the recently introduced range of home-grown hermetically sealed API685 magnetic-drive pumps from KSB Pumps and Valves.

These KSB pumps and valves are able to provide ultra-reliable, low maintenance operation in an uncomplicated package.

Although the pumps are new on the market their blueprints were developed for use in Sasol’s Secunda plant more than a decade ago.

True to the original design, the new range of RPHmdp pumps are produced to the highest standards specifically to handle hazardous materials and completely exclude pumped materials from the drive-end to ensure optimal safety.

KSB Pumps and Valves Product Manager for API and multi-stage pumps, Jan van Vuuren, who led the original development of the RPHmdp pumps for Sasol, says that the pumps make use of an independent magnetic drive to allow the wet-end of the pump to be driven at between 1400-3000RPM.

He explained that depending on the viscosity of the materials being handled, the pumps can achieve similar performance figures as the widespread previously used “API682 Plan 53” pumps.

“We developed the RPHmdp especially for handling aggressive, toxic, explosive, valuable, inflammable or hazardous liquids in the chemical, petrochemical and industrial markets,” van Vuuren disclosed.

With more than 60 000 hours of reliable usage at Sasol Secunda, it is perhaps no surprise that the announced the introduction of the pumps to the general market was met by keenness from number of Europe’s largest refineries to test the pump for their own operations.

“We subsequently installed test pumps at PCK Refinery (one of the biggest key supply refineries in the world) where they were also tested in compliance with the overall requirement for CE certification and approval. Needless to say we achieved certification in a matter of weeks. In addition, the pumps also underwent rigorous testing and operational trials to ensure conformity with various other worldwide standards and subsequently received EAC, ATEX and EC declarations of conformity and certification,” reveals van Vuuren

He explains that the first RPHmdp pumps went into operation at Sasol in 2006.

Since then KSB developed it further for various applications where leaks of pumped product can cause catastrophic failure or worse. Apart from its intrinsic safety, one of the major selling points of the new RPHmdp pumps are its comparatively more simple construction and setup.

Plan 53-type pumps require additional hydraulic systems and pipes etc to be installed in order to seal the fluid line and prevent leaks; whereas RPHmdp pumps are standalone and do not require any other sealing systems.

The pumps are available in a number of different materials and configurations to suit individual companies’ requirements. Ultra-efficient Peek-Can composite material pumps with minimal electrical-current losses are also available.


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