Choosing a Slurry Pump

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The pump is the backbone of the process industry. In factory processes, it is necessary to move materials from one point to another. In accordance with thermodynamic law, moving fluid from high-pressure areas to low, and depending on the layout of the plant often requires the help of the pump to achieve this.

With many types of pumps available, choosing the right pump can be complicated, especially when the porridge is involved. This article will discuss several variables to consider when characterizing and choosing slurry pumps that are suitable for transporting the slurry at the factory.

This is not definitive and is by no means a complete review of handling slurries by pumping but is meant to provide some useful information and a good starting point of what to consider.


Pumping of slurries can often lead to blockages or equipment failure. The job of the designer is to assess all the factors of each situation, including client and existing site preferences to design a system and select a pump that is robust enough to minimize blockages and makes maintenance for operators as easy as capital would permit whilst providing a safe system of work.

Slurry type.

What is slurry? Usually, the term slurry is used to refer to a mixture of fluids and solids or solid combinations. The liquid is often referred to as carrier fluid and in many cases is water, although it can be anything from acid solutions (eg nitric acid) to hydrocarbons (for example diesel).

Producing a slurry or maintaining solid suspension in static conditions is outside the scope of this article. Slurries can broadly be broken down into two types: settling, and non-settling slurries. This characterization is based on the nature of the solid(s). Non-settling slurries contain solids made up of fine particles, which largely remain in suspension when the applied to mix energy ceases.

Before choosing the right pump, you need to determine the requirements for decreased pressure using system characteristics. Things to consider include material of check valve assembly; material of diaphragm; and clearances (the maximum particle size the pump can handle).