Watson-Marlow Fluid Technology Solutions (WMFTS) has passed a notable business milestone by selling the 150,000th Bredel peristaltic hose pump to a mining industry customer in Mexico. The past decade has seen a huge increase in the uptake of Bredel hose pumps in sectors such as mining and construction, where they meet strict environmental regulations in very tough working conditions.
It has been over half a century since Bredel developed the peristaltic hose pump for industrial use. Today, these high-performance units transfer and dose a whole host of aggressive, viscous and abrasive fluids and solids in sectors that include brewing, water treatment, construction, chemical and mining. A particularly fast-growing application at present is chemical transfer duties in the production of lithium-ion batteries. The single biggest order to date for Bredel hose pumps was 174 APEX units to a lithium-ion battery materials manufacturer in China.
The sale of the 150,000th pump to a customer in Mexico was part of a consignment shipped from the Bredel manufacturing plant in Delden, Netherlands, that constituted 16 pumps across eight different models. The combined flow of these pumps is circa 1,560 l/min.
Decade of innovation
Bredel pumps continue to evolve, with many notable achievements arriving in the past 10 years. A good example is the APEX range, which was introduced in 2012 and expanded in 2015. APEX pumps are designed to offer a highly competitive price/performance ratio. The range offers flow rates up to 6,200 l/h and discharge pressure to 8 bar, while the wider Bredel hose pump range includes units that provide flow up to 108,000 l/h and pressure to 16 bar.
With regard to the operating principle, Bredel pumps have no seals, valves, diaphragms, stators, glands or other costly hardware to replace, ensuring they can be easily maintained in-situ without relocation to a workshop. Only the hose requires occasional replacement, which is a simple task.
Long operating life
Hose technology from Bredel has also taken a number of notable steps forward in recent years. A case in point is the Bredel NR Endurance, which made its market debut in 2018. This advanced hose provides up to 50% longer life in abrasive pumping applications, as exemplified recently by a customer in the chemical industry.
The chemical plant pumps PCC (precipitated calcium carbonate) slurry up to 1000 cPs viscosity. Using an optimised set-up, the standard rubber hose from Bredel lasted for 4,468,800 occlusions, which is equivalent to 110 days or 2,660 hours. However, by switching to the Bredel NR Endurance, operating life extended to 7,056,000 occlusions, approximately 175 days or 4,200 hours (a 57% gain). This success contributed to ROI on its new Bredel hose pumps within 12 months.
Today, WMFTS offers direct sales of Bredel pumps in 43 countries and growing, with Finland, Norway, the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Spain, Portugal and the Czech Republic (including Slovakia) joining the list in 2021. All of these countries have existing or recently established sales offices staffed by WMFTS’s own experienced applications engineers and product specialists. Customers therefore benefit from the convenience and personal attention that direct salespeople offer.
To support its sales efforts, significant investment at the Bredel plant in Delden is facilitating even faster deliveries to customers. The recent arrival of an advanced CNC turn-mill centre that is able to machine components featuring both cylindrical and prismatic features in a single set-up, not only avoids the need for two separate machines but reduces lead times substantially. Complete with automated loading/unloading and an advanced storage system, the investment totalled €3.4 million.