Solar Pumps

What is a solar pump?

A pump that is powered by the sun. They provide an environmentally friendly alternative to electric or internal combustion powered pumps, and they're also great for locations that are far from power sources. Solar pumps are useful in a variety of applications such a drawing water from wells or lakes or they may also be used as circulator pumps for ponds, fountains, and swimming pools. They can also be useful in agricultural and various commercial and industrial applications where gas or electricity-powered pumps can't be used.

How do they work?

Like most devices powered by the sun, solar pumps use photovoltaic power cells to convert solar energy into electricity. This power is stored and put to use when the solar pump switches on. The pumps themselves may be positive displacement pumps such as diaphragm pumps or piston pumps, or they may be centrifugal pumps.

Both categories have advantages and disadvantages. Positive displacement pumps can be used to create a greater amount of pressure, which is useful when the liquid needs to be pumped longer distances. Centrifugal pumps can usually handle greater volumes of liquid.

Here are a few solar pump manufacturers to consider.

Expert Advice

So now what do you do? As many of you know, this is a fairly common occurrence, particularly with pumps that have been around a long time. Here's some advice on what to do.

Pump expert Ross Mackay describes what pumps were designed to do, and why they don't always do it. He explains that most of the control actually rests within the system.

Understanding a few key factors before buying a vertical turbine pump can prevent unnecessary maintenance costs. Author provides some advice when shopping for and installing the pumps motor, discharge head, bowl assembly, and column & lineshaft.

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Industry Updates

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Now you can easily calculate flow rates and pressure drops in your piping system out in the field with Xylem's new mobile app.

As the pace of oil-and-gas production and recovery continue to grow in the U.S., the Griswold Pump Company's 811 Series ANSI centrifugal pumps are enabling oil-and-gas producers to maximize their production ability.

Double hose-diaphragm pumps in quintuplex configuration guarantee minimum pulsation and wear. German pump manufacturer Feluwa's Multisafe double hose - diaphragms pumps make easy work of moving aggressive or abrasive products long distrance, according to a company news release.

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Pump Tweets

Here's a great read in The Atlantic highlighting the importance of water pumps -- and the man who repairs them -- to a small Kenyan village. In a farm town as small as Kikuyu, you're in serious trouble if the motor on your water pump breaks down, the writer reports. "Crops wither and die quickly in the sweltering heat. New motors are expensive, and out of the price range of subsistence farmers."

Chilean pump manufacturer Neptuno Pumps has been awarded a contract to supply a dozen vertical turbine pumps for a reclaim water system project at a copper mine in Chile.

NETZSCH Mohnopumpen GmbH introduces a new version of its TORNADO rotary lobe pump. The new lobe pump is built to have a long service life and virtually eliminates any possibility of transmission damage due to leakage or contamination.

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