What Is a Radial Piston Pump?

The pump is one of the most versatile tools in any industry, and it is used for numerous applications across varying verticals. We all have seen a pump in our house which is used for domestic purposes like transporting water and waste for appliances. Regardless of the application, a pump is a mechanical device used to draw fluid by converting mechanical energy into hydraulic energy. They create pressure differences between their intake and discharge valves, and pump fluids at high pressure.

In simple words, pipes are used to move fluids from one location to another and compress air or liquid to pump it out at a desired pressure. There are various types of pumps available on the market, like centrifugal pumps, submersible pumps, rotary pumps, etc. In this blog, we are going to discuss a specific type of piston pump known as the radial piston pump.

What Is a Piston Pump?

A piston pump is a relatively simple, yet powerful, mechanical device. It has a simple design with three main parts: a piston, chamber, and valves. The pump uses an electric motor to power its piston for the up and down movement within the chamber. The downward movement creates a vacuum, sucking the fluid inside the chamber from the inlet valve. On the other hand, the upward movement of the piston compresses the media (in the case of hydraulic pump: oil or water). This pressurized fluid is then discharged through the outlet valve. When the piston moves downward, it opens the inlet valve and closes the outlet valve, and vice versa.

Piston pumps provide a cost-effective and reliable solution for many high-pressure hydraulic oil pumping applications. They are one of the best ways to generate fluid power and can be used in everything from cylinders all the way down to motors.

What Is a Radial Piston Pump?

Radial pumps are designed so the stroke of the piston is in a direction that ensures a right angle in comparison to the shaft. The pistons are arranged like wheel spokes around a cylinder block with an eccentric central cam mounted on a drive shaft. The cam moves toward the pistons as the shaft rotates, forcing them down into the cylinder block and discharging the fluid. As the cam moves away, the spring helps retract the piston and causes the intake stroke. Check valves are used to ensure that fluid enters the inlet ports and exits the outlet ports.

Radial piston pumps have multiple pistons arranged in a cylindrical block around the shaft with three components: a pintle, cylinder barrel with pistons, and a rotor. The pintle controls the flow of fluid in and out of the cylinder. When the rotor rotates, it moves the piston in and out of cylinders to create a vacuum, thus causing fluid to be sucked into the cylinder before discharging pressurized fluids. The inlet and outlet for the pump are located at the end of the central hub. The pistons are connected to the inlet and outlet ports when they extend, respectively.

The pump housing design is altered to accommodate an inlet and outlet at various locations around its perimeter. Radial piston pumps come with either fixed or variable displacement models, where the rotor's eccentricity can also change independently depending on whether you want to decrease or increase the stroke of the pistons.

Advantage of Radial Pumps

There are several advantages of radial piston pump such as:

  • The radial-pump has high efficiency.
  • The pump has a high-pressure range up to 1,000 bar or 14,000 psi.
  • The radial-pump has low flow and pressure ripple.
  • The pump has a low noise level.
  • The radial pump can function at very high load at the lowest speed.
  • The radial-pump is highly reliable.

The only disadvantage of radial pumps is their larger size when compared to axial pumps due to their more significant radial dimensions, making them challenging to work in tight spaces.

What Are Their Applications?

Hydrostatically balanced radial piston pumps are the perfect solution for any application that demands compatibility with various hydraulic fluids. These versatile tools can even combine biodegradable oils, mineral oils or water-glycol based systems, HFD (synthetic ester), HFA (oil in water), and cutting emulsion. They are used for machine tools, like cutting emulsion or supplying pumps to hydraulic equipment, such as cylinders on high-pressure units (HPU). Radial Pumps are also found in cars with automatic transmissions or hydraulic suspension control systems that use them as their main component. They are also useful when working with powders during plastic injection molding processes.

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September 22, 2022

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