While this post won't leave you with a specific peristaltic pump choice for your application, it will give you some basic information on how they function.
What is a peristaltic pump?
Peristaltic pumps are a type of positive displacement pump and are used to move a wide variety of liquids, although they are popular for pumping high purity, viscous, caustics and corrosive liquids.
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Peristaltic pumping action is achieved by compression of an elastometric hose against a pump casing with two opposed rotating shoes. As these shoes rotate, the liquid is forced to move ahead of each shoe. When each shoe reaches the end of the hose, the reinforced tube immediately returns to its original shape resulting in suction and priming capabilities.
Peristaltic pumping action is powerful but will not break up delicate emulsions or cause excessive frothing of dissolved gases. With no cups, seals, or packing to come in direct contact with the pumped fluids, peristaltic pumps are ideal for pumping high purity fluids or fluids corrosive enough to require complete isolation from contact with mechanical parts of the fluid transport system. The hose is the main wear component and is easy to replaced. Because they are positive displacement and many manufacturers offer high turn down drives they are used in metering applications. You will find seristaltic pumps in hospitals, soda fountains, water filtration facilities and sludge transfer applications.
What are the downsides?
Peristaltic pumps tend to pulse, so this rules out any application in which you need the flow to be smooth. The hose wears and will require maintenance attention.
I hope this helps you think through your own peristaltic pump application. Have questions or want to have an expert help you figure out the best pump for your application? Fill out the "Talk with an Expert" form by clicking here.