High Viscosity Pumps: Frequently Asked Questions

Applications for pumping come in a wide variety of thicknesses, meaning the pump you need will depend on the thickness of your product. There are a number of other factors to consider alongside this, but this case study will be focusing on viscosity. Our frequently asked questions are listed below to run you through what viscosity is and what to consider when pumping products of a high viscosity.

What is ‘viscosity’?

Viscosity is the thickness, stickiness and semi-fluid consistency of a product. For example, water would have a very, very low consistency whereas something like Vaseline would have a very high viscosity. Here at Tapflo we tend to use centipois to measure the viscosity of a product, although there are other units of measurement used!

What pump type is best for viscous products?

Depending on a number of factors in the process, Tapflo have a number of pumps suitable for highly viscous products. Our Diaphragm Pumps can support products up to about 10,000 cPs, whereas our Lobe and Twin Screw Pumps can support products of up to 1,000,000!! Yep, in case your eyes when funny looking at all those zero’s we said 1 MILLION!

What is the most important thing to consider when specifying a pump for viscous products?

Selecting a pump for viscous products can be slightly challenging…for some people anyway! Not for the Tapflo team! It’s important to remember that priming a pump can be a difficult task with viscous products, especially if they are thick and sticky like golden syrup for example! It’s also important that flow rates will be dramatically less than shown on performance curves when pumping viscous products! Viscous products tend to get thinner and easier to move when they are heated, it’s important to state the temperature the product will be pumped at!

High Viscosity pump case study

Tapflo were recently approached by a cheesecake Company. They needed a pump to cheesecake mix from large 500L mixers and deposit into a production line hopper.

Application Details:

Fluid: Cheesecake mix containing honeycomb chunks

Viscosity: Approx. 200,000 cps

Flow Rate: 200lpm

Temperature: 2 degrees

Solids: Some 10mm chunks

Pipe Work: 3 1/2”

Length of discharge: 2m vertical 3M across

Suction Condition: 1.5M

Pumping solution offered:

Pump Type: Twin Screw Pump

Materials: Stainless steel

Connection Size: 3 ½”

After trialling a few pumps the customer wanted a pump that would keep the marble effect of the cheesecake and not crush any of the solids in the mix. A twin screw was perfect for this application as it is gentle on the product and can pump products of up to 1,000,000. The pump was installed and the customer was happy with the end result.

If you require a similar pump or any assistance on fluid handling within your factory then please get in touch on 02380 252 325 or email us at [email protected]

Twin Screw Pump supplied by Tapflo UK
Twin Screw Pump supplied by Tapflo UK
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