Capability And Versatility Of Regenerative Turbine Pumps

Posted on25/03/2022

Turbine and centrifugal pumps, usually driven by an engine pump in Singapore, are used for clean liquid applications requiring low flow, high head, flexible operation, and compact design. These include cooling water circulators for lasers and other types of machinery where there is a demand for a high head. 

In a typical centrifugal pump, fluid passes through the centre of the impeller and is “pushed” by one of the four to eight rotating vanes, imparting a centrifugal force on the liquid. Once the fluid force is collected at the volute, it will be redirected towards the pump discharge to ensure flow and pressure.  

What is the difference between a regenerative turbine pump and a centrifugal pump?

The terms “pump” and “compressor” are usually used interchangeably. However, a regenerative turbine pump moves either liquid or gas from one place to another. On the other hand, a compressor is used to squeeze gas into a smaller volume and pump it somewhere at the same time. 

A centrifugal pump is commonly used for pumping solvents, organics, oils, acids, water, and other “thin” liquids in agricultural, domestic, and industrial applications. A suitable centrifugal pump should be used for any low viscosity fluid application. 

Using a regenerative turbine pump, autogas or liquified petroleum gas (LPG) may be stored and transported as a liquid and subsequently burnt as a gas at a dispensing plant.

If the pump's inlet pressure is far lower than the liquid's vapour pressure, vapour bubbles form in the liquid. The pressure in the pumping chamber rises as the bubbles move through it, causing cavitation and destroying the pump mechanism. However, this can be prevented by using a regenerative turbine pump. A regenerative turbine pump is the best equipment for this job because it is immune to damages caused by cavitation, which is the result of pumping volatile liquids. 

Regenerative turbine pump capability

Because of its ability to manage low viscosities while maintaining high pressures, regenerative turbine pumps are ideal for various applications. It combines the high discharge pressure of a positive displacement (PD) pump and a centrifugal pump’s performance flexibility using a non-contacting, free-wheeling, rotating disc with 50 to 60 small cells or buckets on each side of its periphery that serves as an impeller. 

The small cells collect the liquid as soon as it flows through the turbine pump's suction port. The liquid within the cells is then accelerated by the impeller as it travels around the surrounding hydraulic channel.

While most pump technologies suffer damages when transferring liquids at low flow and high pressure, a regenerative turbine pump thrives while at the same time processing entrained vapours and liquids at or almost at their boiling points. Such conditions can result in cavitation, vibration, noise, and unreliable perormance. But because a regenerative pump is designed differently, it isn’t affected by such conditions specifically because it can handle low viscosities of 0.1 to 50 CST with differential pressures of up to 300 psi and a maximum pressure of up to 493 psi when handling liquids with high vapour pressures.  

Regenerative turbine pump versatility

Thanks to its impeller and cells, a regenerative turbine pump is incredibly versatile. The speed and spiral motion reduce the probability of pulsation and cavitation by abrading the fluid and eliminating the vapour bubbles as soon as they form. With a balanced design and smooth flow, detrimental effects can be prevented and, at the same time, minimise vibration and noise. 

These benefits allow a regenerative turbine pump to be used in applications beyond Autogas. These include refrigerants, aerosols, vaporiser feeds, ammonia, and boiler feedwater. 


While there are many engine pump technologies, only a regenerative turbine pump has the versatility and capability to be used in applications with low viscosity liquids and low suction conditions or those near their boiling points. Typical challenges posed by entrained vapours and cavitation do not affect the integrity of a regenerative turbine, allowing owners and operators to operate such technology with fewer maintenance requirements. 


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