How an Alfa Laval UltraPure pump can be the key to plant sustainability

Pump optimization can save energy in your pharmaceutical and biotech plant

Pump optimizing is highly relevant if you want to reduce energy consumption within your pharmaceutical or biotech processes. Pumping systems alone consume an estimated 25% of the energy at a typical plant. A plant’s energy consumption can range from 90 kWh/h to 6500 kWh/h, depending on the final product produced; of this, a considerable amount of energy is used by the pumps.


By optimizing your pump selection, you can reduce energy consumption and realize savings of up to 50.


So whilst not a new idea, pump optimization is highly relevant in today’s competitive business climate. With the right pumps, you can reduce total cost of ownership, raise system performance and enhance your plant’s environmental profile. The payback time for required modifications? Often, it takes less than a year. It is time for action!


Effect on 24/7 water systems Where you have a system which is running 24/7, for example in large Water-for-Injection (WFI) processes, the effect of a low efficiency pump contributes not only to the energy costs and environmental impact of carbon emissions but also the increased life cycle cost. Recirculation within the pump head can cause heat generation and increased vibration reducing the pump seal and motor bearing life. This will impact the uptime of the process, increase maintenance costs and will require additional cleaning cycles and sterilization to prevent cross contamination.


Here are some ways to start on a path to pump sustainability:

Consider overall system design in addition to pump design (eg: pipe layout):

Even with high quality pumps, actual pump performance can vary dramatically from application to application.

Change your pump so it operates at the best efficiency point:

Change the diameter of the pump impeller

Choose a proven, trusted pump provider:

Where they provide the latest tools, including computer-aided selection programs free of charge. These will help you get closer to optimum performance.

Look at alternatives to controlling flow rates:

Use a variable frequency drive to adjust pump speed directly, rather than adjusting back pressure via valves. Energy savings of 30–40% are possible.

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