Randburg-based industrial equipment supplier Verder Pumps’ Verderflex (VF) 125 peristaltic pump is in operation at mining company Kansanshi Mining’s Zambia-based Kansanshi copper mine and is undergoing testing at two other Zambian mines, as well as mines in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Kansanshi can produce 340 000 t/y of copper and more than 120 000 oz/y of gold.
The VF125 peristaltic pump was launched in Rustenburg, South Africa, in 2004, at an operation owned by mining company Anglo American Platinum and enables mining clients to save on operating costs through facilitating “huge” water savings.
“Water is a natural resource and a cost factor in the mining process and any saving thereof can be considered a benefit to the environment,” enthuses Verder Pumps sales manager Rigby Croxford.
Mining clients can expect water savings of up to 40%, based on the volume used at the site, using the VF125 peristaltic pump, as opposed to a centrifugal pump, he explains to Mining Weekly.
“The pump mainly works in conjuction with a mining operation’s underflow thickeners to transfer product to the filter presses. Slurries can be transferred with specific gravities (SGs) of up to 1.8 and solids of up to 10 mm can also be transferred without damaging the pump,” Croxford notes.
He adds that damage to the pump is avoided, owing to the slurries being transferred through a hose, thereby preventing their contact with any mechanical parts.
“By pumping at higher SG, you are delivering more product to where it is required at less cost,” Croxford adds, noting that being able to pump high SG liquids is “ideal” for the transfer of mining slurries and similar high solid-content liquids.
Installation of the VF125 peristaltic pump is quick, with its installation by a mine maintenance team taking a day, as long as all on-site pipework is in order, he explains.
Verder South Africa offers peristaltic pump principles training, Croxford notes, adding that the company also supervises the installation to assist in ensuring that the pump runs at its most efficient.
Training takes a few hours to complete and is done on the site, Croxford explains.
Capabilities and Benefits
Other features of the VF125 pump include a flow rate of up to 90 m3/h, a maximum continuous flow of up to 55 m3/h at 1.8 SG and a maximum working pressure of 16 bar.
The 125-mm-sized hose, shoes and lubricant are the only service items on the pump that contains the pro- duct inside the pump should the hose burst.
The VF peristaltic pumps can be maintained on site, Croxford notes, which eliminates the costly downtime associated with moving pumps to a workshop.
“This is the only pump in its class that can pump at the required pressures above 6 bar, and it forms part of the Verderflex Peristaltic and Dura ranges, which range from 5 mm- to the 125 mm-size pumps,” Croxford enthuses, adding that the Dura pumps range is most commonly used as dosing pumps in reagent plants on mines.
He concludes that the pumps are made for “extreme circumstances” and have been used in mines in Africa, Australia and Canada with “huge success”.