Tech - Article
Small pumps with big challenges? Solving unexpected motion problems
Whether the final application is in the healthcare, industrial, energy or even mining sector, providing motion solutions for small pumps almost invariably involves tackling a range of challenges. To address these challenges successfully requires experience, expertise, access to a full range of motion solution products and, perhaps most important of all, enthusiasm for cooperation and innovation. Delta Line meets all these requirements. As a result, Delta Line has, for many decades, been providing pump manufacturers with motion solutions that have enhanced their products and their reputations. These are just a few examples.
Noisy hot-running peristaltic pumps
A peristaltic pump was fitted with a slotted brushless DC (BLDC) motor driving a spur gearbox. The motor ran hot, the gearbox produced too much noise, and the pump could not be run slowly enough to provide accurate control for micro- and nano-liter delivery volumes. After examining the application in detail, Delta Line engineers developed a solution based on a hybrid stepping motor. This is a low-speed high torque product and, despite misconceptions based on older types, modern versions are almost noise- and vibration-free in operation.
The motor was paired with a closed-loop motion controller that provided excellent torque and speed control, and which was configured specifically to minimize motor heating. In addition, the motion controller selected for this application supports remote access for diagnostics. Benefits to the pump manufacturer – and to the end user – were cost savings because of the elimination of the gearbox, reduced noise and vibration, less heat radiated into the pumped medium and lower servicing costs thanks to the remote access facility.
Syringe pumps with a need for economy
Economy was the key requirement for a manufacturer of syringe pumps. Not only did the motion solution need to be cost effective, but it also had to be economical in terms of power usage, as the pumps are often battery operated. From a technical point of view, smooth well-regulated motion was essential. The existing solution used a coreless DC motor in conjunction with a gearbox and leadscrew that were purchased separately and assembled by the pump manufacturer.
Engineers from Delta Line worked closely with the pump manufacturer’s engineering team to develop an in-depth understanding of the application and to devise an enhanced solution that would reduce costs while increasing the operating efficiency of the pump. The new solution uses a high efficiency coreless DC motor and gearbox operating in conjunction with very cost-effective custom-designed leadscrew and custom-moulded leadscrew nut.
An important benefit is that Delta Line supplies the motor, gearbox and leadscrew to the pump manufacturer as a single ready-built and fully tested unit, thereby not only reducing the time needed to assemble the pumps, but also ensuring that the components are fully functional and optimally matched.
In this instance, the benefits for the pump manufacturer are reduced costs, reduced assembly time and, since fewer separate components are needed, simpler ordering and stock control. In addition, the end user benefits as the new solution is more economical in its use of power, which means that the pumps can operate for longer periods on battery power.
Diaphragm pumps with a short life
Premature bearing failure meant that slotted BLDC motors driving a diaphragm pump had an unacceptably short service life. Investigation by Delta Line engineers quickly revealed that this was due to increased wear on the bearing resulting from the high radial load imposed by the pump mechanism. Since no standard motor would provide an economical solution, Delta Line developed a customized version of one of its BLDC motors. This was fitted with a double front bearing assembly, in which both bearings were oversized to further increase the motor’s radial load capacity. Additionally, the motor was provided with an integrated FFF electronic controller with a simple and convenient three-wire interface.
The result is a significantly improved pump with higher reliability and greatly extended service life. In addition, the new version can be used to pump liquids with higher viscosity, and it is much quieter in operation.
When it comes to motion solutions for pumps, there is no shortage of options, and it is not particularly difficult to devise a solution that at least appears to work. However, as the examples described have shown, devising a solution that is cost effective and that works efficiently and reliably throughout a long service life is far less straightforward. Only an expert supplier with an in-depth understanding of the pump sector can be relied upon to do so, and only then if they can offer not only standard products but also, where appropriate, partly or even fully customized solutions.
Delta Line is such a supplier, with proven experience in the pump sector, an extensive product range, in-house customization capabilities, a worldwide presence, and an enviable reputation for being responsive, and easy to deal with. In addition, the company is renowned for offering products that combine the highest quality with outstanding value for money. For more information about Delta Line motion solutions for pumps, or to arrange for Delta Line engineers to advise on your own application do not hesitate to contact us.