Tag Archives: Integrated Pump Technology

GETTING PUMPS, SUPPORT CLOSER TO CUSTOMERS

Strengthening its distributorship footprint since 2014, Integrated Pump Technology today has a network through sub-Saharan Africa to assure customers of the supply and services they need.

According to Jordan Marsh, general manager at Integrated Pump Technology, the company focuses heavily on the mining sector so has chosen its distributors mainly from local firms with strong links to mines. Integrated Pump Technology is perhaps most well known as the distributor of the tough Grindex submersible pump range.

“It has been an exciting couple of years for us, in which we have appointed new distributors in Zimbabwe, Namibia, Zambia and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC),” says Marsh. “We have also added to our network a distributor for the Klerksdorp gold mining region, that will also cover Welkom and the Free State area.”

This accelerates the response time to customers, with distributors carrying a stock of basic spare parts and liaising directly with a key account manager from head office for technical and marketing support. The careful choice of distributors has ensured the right skills are available to help customers select and operate the optimal pump for the task.

“We provide our network with in-depth training on our specific products, and ongoing advice and guidance wherever they need it,” he says. “Our collaborative strategy also means that a key account manager will regularly accompany distributors on their visits to the end-customer.”

Marsh highlights that customers should feel well supported by both the distributor and the OEM, to be confident of optimal uptime and performance from their pump fleet. Manufactured in Sweden, Grindex pumps are used in tough environments such as mining, construction and marine applications.

Integrated Pump Technology’s overall network comprises 14 distributors to cover the main geographic areas of activity, with certain very busy mining areas – such as the Northern Cape and Rustenburg – being served by more than one.

TOUGH CONDITIONS CALL FOR GRINDEX DRAINAGE PUMPS

Tough pumping applications such as on mine and construction sites need a proven range of drainage pumps that are heavy-duty but offer low total cost of ownership – these characteristics have been well proven in Grindex units. 

The Grindex range of drainage pumps handle water with abrasive solids up to 12 mm in size, and with high pH values from five to eight. Distributed locally by authorised southern African agent Integrated Pump Technology, Grindex submersible pumps have a heritage going back over 60 years – with more than 400,000 pumps delivered.

Drainage pumps are most suitable when users need to pump large quantities of dirty water, but still need to achieve heads of up to 200 metres, or flow rates of up to 350 litres a second. These Grindex pumps deliver all that, and convenience besides. 

This is according to Integrated Pump Technology sales manager, Jordan Marsh who say the unique valve on Grindex drainage pumps enables air cooling of the motor so they can run dry without a problem – and therefore don’t need babysitting.

On the small end of the range – comprising the Micro, Milli and Mini models – these pumps are compact, lightweight and ultraportable. The Micro model’s low power consumption makes it ideal when running on a generator. The Milli looks similar to the Micro, but enables low suction down to only a few millimetres, thanks to the unique non-return valve. 

In the medium section of the Grindex range are the Minex, Minette, Minor, Major, Master and Matador. The revolutionary hydraulic design ensures high wear resistance and dramatically reduces any performance drop that may result from long-time wear. 

“With their internal starter, SMART motor protector and optional level regulator, these pumps provide fully automatic protection and control without the need for external starter,” Marsh says. “The soft starter means smoother motor acceleration, thereby protecting the pump while reducing equipment wear and mechanical stress.”

There are two large Grindex drainage pumps – the Magnum and the Mega. The Magnum is relied on for the toughest jobs, with high quality, reliable design combined with the ease of maintenance. Made of cast iron, the Mega is ideal for operating in deep excavations where very high-head pumping is needed. Designed to handle pH levels from six to 13, it can also be fitted with zinc anodes for extra protection.

UNPRECEDENTED DEMAND FOR GRINDEX STAINLESS STEEL PUMPS ON COPPERBELT

Integrated Pump Technology reports an unprecedented demand for Grindex stainless steel pumps from customers on the Zambian and DRC Copperbelt. Recent months have seen the company replace cast iron and aluminium pumps with these units across a range of operating applications, and on remote mines in this region. 

Sales manager, Jordan Marsh attributes the move to stainless pump units to the poor water quality in the region which has seen acidity levels increase and pH drop. “In areas experiencing acid mine drainage, we see many instances where initial pumps selection did not properly consider the operating conditions, and excessive strain was placed on pumps that are not practical for use in such highly corrosive applications.” 

“This is one of the reasons why we urge our customers to do a proper assessment of the operating environment and ensure that the pump selected is capable of dealing with conditions,” he continues. 

Marsh stresses that a standard submersible drainage and sludge pump, even with a protective coating, is not able to withstand the levels of acidity and abrasion and will fail within a matter of weeks or even days. 

“As the official sub-Saharan distributor for Grindex pumps, we are able to offer Grindex stainless steel pumps which are engineered to operate reliably in contaminated water and handle corrosive slurries with abrasive solids.”

A major advantage that the Grindex Inox range of pumps offers is that that these are essentially plug and play units and easy to install and operate. The pumps are manufactured from acid-proof stainless steel and operate reliably in pH levels ranging from 2 to 10. This makes the pumps more than suitable for use in mining applications on the Copperbelt. 

“What sets the Grindex Inox range apart from other similar stainless steel pumps is that it incorporates SMART motor protection,” Marsh explains. “This facilitates pump operation without requiring an external control panel and prevents damage being caused in the event of a power outage.” 

The cast acid-proof stainless steel impeller ensures pumping capacities in corrosive slurries, while the diffusers in the drainage pumps are rubber-lined and adjustable to maintain optimum pumping performance. In the sludge pumps, the rubber-lined pump housing is highly abrasive resistant and oil-resistant for longer life. 

Included in the Grindex pumps recently installed and operating successfully on the Zambian and DRC Copperbelt are dewatering, drainage and sludge pumps ranging from 2 kW all the way up to 8 kW units as well as 85 kW Grindex N/H stainless steel Inox pumps. 

FULL-SERVICE CAPABILITY VITAL FOR RELIABLE PUMP SUPPLY

Even the best quality pumps need to be supported with a full range of aftermarket services, according to Jordan Marsh, sales manager at Integrated Pump Technology. 

“Reliable pumping is the life-blood of many sectors in our economy, making the choice of pump supplier a strategically important one,” says Marsh. “This applies even when customers have specified the best pumps available.”

He highlights, for instance, that Integrated Pump Technology is so confident of its Grindex range that it offers a 36-month warranty on all new pump units purchased. The expected lifespan is, of course, much longer than this, he says, and the company is well equipped to ensure customers long and reliable performance. 

“Our full-service offering includes a comprehensive stock of all critical spares across the range, with a service centre and experienced staff to maintain units to OEM standards,” he says. The necessary equipment and expertise are on hand to look after the complete range of pumps, from the 0,4 kW units right up to the large 90 kW Grindex Bravo Mega pumps. 

Integrated Pump Technology also supplies and supports Faggiolati slurry pumps and Leybold vacuum pumps, and can even service and test other brands of submersible pumps.

Among the technical services in the company’s quality-accredited workshop is its test tank, which allows comprehensive testing of pumps with motors up to 150 kW. According to workshop manager Fred Slabbert, the continual investment in workshop capability means that customers can benefit from a six-month warranty on refurbishments and repairs. The workshop can even conduct full refurbishments. 

“Pump users can bring us their equipment for a professional assessment by our skilled technicians,” Slabbert says. “After careful examination, we generate a condition report which gives all the details necessary for an informed decision, and customers are assured of aftermarket services to OEM standards.”

Underpinning the company’s high service levels is a dedicated workshop sales administrator, providing a strong link between customers and the workshop and spares store.

“We prioritise quick and efficient turnaround times on all spares sales, repairs and quotes, keeping customers informed at each step in our relationship,” he says. In the unlikely event of a customer needing assistance on site, the workshop is also equipped to provide trouble-shooting assistance on most mechanical or electrical issues.

BRAVO PUMP PUSHES OUT CONTENDERS IN DENSE SLURRY WORK

Competitors are feeling the heat from the hard-working Grindex Bravo 600 submersible slurry pump, which has replaced under-performing products at two mine sites in Limpopo and North West provinces recently. 

The attraction, according to Jordan Marsh, sales manager at Integrated Pump Technology, has been the Grindex Bravo 600’s reliability and efficiency. This is due largely to its innovative cooling jacket between the outer casing and the motor.

“Mines have a frequent requirement for a hard-working pump to transfer slurry from process tanks, where levels change quickly and the material often becomes quite viscous,” says Marsh. “In these dry-bed applications, many pumps struggle with the density or even burn out when no longer submerged.”

The Grindex Bravo 600, though, has proven ideal for these applications, being supplied in South Africa as standard with a glycol-filled cooling jacket to keep its temperature down. This allows it to function reliably even when exposed above the slurry level.

“Plant operators are not always able to be present to check the levels in these tanks, or to add water to dilute slurry, so the specific gravity of the material can rise considerably,” he says. “This is where the Grindex Bravo 600’s agitator comes into its own, agitating the solids into suspension for easier removal. It even handles particle sizes up to 40 mm.”

To demonstrate the pump’s performance under these arduous conditions, Integrated Pump Rental offers mines a trial unit to run over an extended period. These tests are now resulting in purchases, says Marsh, after the customer is satisfied that the pump delivers. Both the impeller and casing are manufactured from hard iron, making for a robust product with long working life. 

“This 22 kW pump also punches above its weight in terms of output, achieving the same performance as our competitors’ 30 kW pumps,” he says. “This makes the solution energy efficient, saving mines on electricity costs.” 

Integrated Pump Technology has been distributing Grindex pumps in sub-Saharan Africa since 2014. So confident is the company about these advanced workhorse pumps, that the company offers a 30 month warranty on the units. Its well-equipped engineering facility in Jet Park undertakes maintenance and repairs to OEM standards.

KEEPING POWER STATION PUMPS UP TO SPEED

Integrated Pump Technology is keeping the submersible pumps at a large Limpopo power station’s process drain sumps in optimal condition through high quality maintenance.

The stainless steel Faggiolati pumps were initially supplied by Integrated Pump Technology, which locally represents the Italy-based original equipment manufacturer (OEM). The pumps were carefully specified to perform optimally in high temperatures of up to 70⁰ C. They pump water that reports to the sump from a number of the power station’s sub-systems, including the turbine hall hot drains and the condensate polishing plant.

“When the pumps are swopped out for maintenance, they are brought to our well-equipped workshop in Jet Park for a comprehensive strip quotation and fault report,” says Fred Slabbert, workshop manager at Integrated Pump Technology. “We assess the complete pump, including checks on oil, wear levels, insulation, bearing lubrication and electrical cables.”

An important aspect to consider is the wear on the impeller, says Slabbert, as this directly affects the pump’s efficiency and ability to reach its duty point. The pumps are required to move 100 m3 per hour at a head of 45 metres. To speed up turnaround times on maintenance, the company keeps special repair kits in stock from Faggiolati Pumps.

“With our experience in maintaining and repairing Faggiolati pumps – among other pump brands – we make sure that all work is done to OEM standards,” says Slabbert. “This includes extensive testing capability, with a test tank that can accommodate motors up to 150 kW in power.”

After the repairs on these units, a representative of the end-customer is present at the Integrated Pump Technology workshop to witness the final tests and receive the test certificate. This testing includes the 1,5 bar pressure test on pump seals, and confirmation that there is no water infiltration in the oil.

“The pumps are then subject to full-curve testing in the tank, witnessed by the end-customer,” he says. “We have always had positive efficiency results on the Faggiolati pumps in these tests, proving our technical capability to meet OEM standards.”

GRINDEX MAXI TO STEELPOORT PLATINUM MINE

The quick reaction of Integrated Pump Technology saw the company come to the rescue of a platinum mining customer who urgently needed to dewater its decline shaft.

Alfred Kelsey, key account manager at Integrated Pump Technology, explains that the company, as the official Grindex pump distributor for southern Africa, maintains a comprehensive stockholding of dewatering pumps. This, he says, is key to allowing its extensive distributor network to react quickly to customer needs.

“The strength of our stockholding allowed us to effect a same day delivery of two Grindex Maxi pumps to our distributor in Steelpoort, Babata Pumps, allowing them to provide an efficient service to their end-customer, a platinum mine in that area.

The two Grindex Maxi pumps have been installed in the mine’s decline shaft to ensure effective dewatering. The pumps are capable of achieving a flow rate of 30 litres per second at a head of 80 metres and being of robust construction are well suited to this type of heavy-duty drainage application.

Equipped with a SMART™ motor protector and an air valve that enables continuous unattended operation, the Grindex Maxi pumps have found favour in the mining environment as this feature allows the pumps to run dry without operational interruptions.

The hydraulic design facilitates re-adjustment of the impeller-suction-cover-clearance allowing performance to be regained after wear. Kelsey says this is a significant feature for customers assisting in keeping life cycle costs low. Further, reliable operation is, as always, one of the most important considerations when it comes to drainage and dewatering applications, and the Grindex Maxi pump is simple and easy to maintain.

Kelsey says that installation of the pump was done by the end-customer and Babata Pump will provide any support required.

Integrated Pump Technology is the sole importer and principal distributor for the Grindex range of dewatering, slurry and sludge pumps for southern Africa. A network of nine strategically located, specialised pump distributors supported by dedicated account managers ensures effective service and customer support.

Headquartered in Johannesburg, the company operates a comprehensive service facility which supports this distribution structure. The facility includes a state-of-the-art automated pump test facility.

DRY INSTALLATION OF GRINDEX PUMP AT IRON ORE MINE

An iron ore mine in the Northern Cape is benefiting from the versatility of a Grindex Bravo 800 pump, which was recently dry-installed by Integrated Pump Technology for boosting slurry flow.

According to Justin Bawden, key account manager at Integrated Pump Technology, the submersible Grindex Bravo pump is best known for operating in a liquid environment. In this case, however, it needed to be used as a booster from the wall of one of the mine’s settling dams.

“The distance from the settling dam to the collection pit was about a kilometre, and the fluid being pumped was high in solids,” Bawden says. “This meant that we needed to boost the pressure considerably from the dam wall. The solution therefore needed to consider both the abrasiveness and the specific gravity of the slurry.”

He noted that the previously installed pump was a normal dewatering pump. It had failed due to the extreme wear from the heavy sedimentation in the mine’s settling pond.

In a solution developed in collaboration with Integrated Pump Technology, the mine submerged one of its existing Grindex Bravo pumps in the settling dam. This unit pumps into a 5-inch pipeline over a distance of about 30 metres at a head of 8 to 10 metres to the newly supplied Grindex Bravo 800 at the top of the dam wall.

“We dry-installed the new heavy-duty Grindex Bravo so that it could receive material from below and boost it to the collection pit,” Bawden says. “It was vital to provide sufficient pump capacity so that sediment did not block the pipeline.”

He highlights that the heavy sedimentation in this application required a fit-for-purpose slurry pump like the Grindex Bravo 800. With its impeller and pump housing made of Hard-iron™, the pump was able to provide the high wear-resistance required.

“The sand and stones in the slurry would quickly cause extreme wear and cavitation inside a normal dewatering pump, which is usually made of cast iron,” he says. “The large throughlet of the Bravo pumps also allows them to handle solids of varying sizes.”

With a rated output of 45 kW and a shaft speed of 1,475 rpm, the Grindex Bravo 800 is able to deliver an output of almost 100 litres per second in this application. In addition to the pump’s thermal protection to avoid overheating, an optional cooling jacket on the pump can be fitted for use in dry pit applications.

Integrated Pump Technology is the official distributor of Grindex pumps in sub-Saharan Africa. So confident is Integrated Pump Technology in the quality of these submersible pumps, that the company extended the warranty on these pumps to 30 months.

BRAVO, THE SLURRY PUMP THAT WORKS WHERE OTHERS FALL SHORT

Pumping fluids with high solids concentrations is far more complicated than just pumping water. To avoid sedimentation in the system, the correct pump size with appropriately dimensioned hoses and pipes must be selected.

Adding to the complexity of selecting pumps for slurry pumping applications is that the concentration of solids, together with particle size and shape, can affect pump performance as well as power requirements. Settled solids might require external agitators, water jets or mixers to get them back in suspension and allow them to be pumped.

All these factors need to be considered when selecting the correct slurry pump for an application, and local Grindex pump distributor, Integrated Pump Technology has issued a caution against making this purchase decision based on capital cost alone.

“Slurry pumps need to handle abrasive solids in suspension, including sand, gravel and waste products in high concentration,” Colin Adams, managing director of Integrated Pump Technology says.

“Coping with the high levels of wear caused by this abrasion requires a pump with hydraulic parts manufactured from a very hard metal alloy. Selecting anything less will result if high maintenance and repair costs translating into unnecessarily high total cost of ownership.”

Grindex Bravo submersible slurry pumps are engineered to cope with the toughest pumping conditions, and the hydraulic components are made from Hard Iron™, one of the hardest materials available.

“Countering excessive wear is important in slurry pumps and the robust construction of the Bravo pump, coupled with its low shaft speed, ensures high wear resistance even in the most demanding slurry applications,” Adams says

The Bravo pump range can operate over the complete pump curve, not just on a specific duty and can handle from 30 litres per second up to 130 litres per second at a maximum head of 45 metres.

The large throughlet means that the pump can handle solids of varying sizes. The pumps are equipped with a leakage sensor that facilitates early detection of any problems, allowing action to be taken as soon as possible.

Adams says that with its single adjustment screw it is simple to tweak the pump impeller ensuring optimal performance.

Pumps in the Bravo range from the 400 upwards are equipped with an agitator designed specifically for coarser slurries. This enables the pump to stir up and pump sand, sludge and solids in suspension.

“Our team of experienced and skills pumps specialists can advise customers on the most appropriate pump for a particular slurry application, assuring that the pump installation will operate at low total cost of ownership,” Adams concludes.

STAINLESS STEEL SUBMERSIBLE PUMPS EXCEL IN CORROSIVE CONDITIONS

Nothing beats a fully cast stainless steel pump for resilience and reliability when faced with a corrosive environment, contaminated water and abrasive solids.

“A protective coating on your standard submersible drainage and sludge pump will only protect your pump until the first scratch,” warns Integrated Pump Technology managing director Colin Adams. “After that, acidity and abrasion can destroy standard pumps in a matter of weeks or even days.”

The Grindex INOX series of pumps – distributed in Africa by Integrated Pump Technology – are made of acid-proof stainless steel to operate reliably in pH levels ranging from 2 to 10. This makes them ideal for mines, shipyards, power plants and other worksites that deal with corrosive water, salt water or sludge. All INOX pumps can even be equipped with zinc anodes for extra protection.

The Minette INOX to the Master INOX drainage pumps are designed for pumping water with abrasive particles in suspension, up to the size of the strainer holes. The Salvador INOX to the Sandy INOX sludge pumps specialise in pumping water with a high content of solids, up to the size of the pump inlet opening diameter. They can pump water with abrasive particles, different types of mud and sludge, or even light slurry.

The Mega Inox – based on the well-proven cast-iron Mega pump platform – is also manufactured completely in stainless steel. The power of this unit makes it ideal for operation in deep excavations where very high head pumping is needed.

Features that make these stainless steel pumps unique include SMART motor protection that prevents damage caused by power failures, an air valve that cools the pump should it run dry, and an outer casing in corrugated stainless steel to handle rough treatment.

The casted acid-proof stainless steel impeller ensures pumping capacities in corrosive fluids, while the diffusers in the drainage pumps are rubber-lined and adjustable to maintain optimum pumping performance. In the sludge pumps, the rubber-lined pump housing is highly abrasive resistant and oil-resistant for longer life. The Grindex INOX model even offers double mechanical shaft seals, with an oil compartment between the seals.

While the INOX stainless steel range is an exciting new innovation in drainage and sludge pump applications, Grindex has been designing and manufacturing electrical submersible pumps for some 50 years. Over 300,000 of these pumps have been supplied in more than 100 countries.