Advanced FIT drives new plant efficiency

The new Advanced Series Pro-Flo SHIFT FIT AODD pump from Wilden.
The new Advanced Series Pro-Flo SHIFT FIT AODD pump from Wilden.

Now one of the country’s top 10 privately owned blenders, distributors and packagers of industrial chemicals in the country, it has moved to major new premises. Critical to the new operation was the choice of pumps to be installed.

Wilden Advanced Series FIT AODD Pumps were installed in the warm room of the new facility.

It took three years for EMCO to create a new corporate headquarters and distribution facility at an old resin and ink factory in Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin. The new building offered a blank canvas on which to establish warehousing, blending, packaging, liquid-storage, test-lab and operations areas.

“When we were finished, we moved our entire industrial-chemical division to Pleasant Prairie,” said vice president of engineering B.J. Korman. “At heart, we’re a just-in-time distributor. We make a blend, make a tote and get it out to the customer the next day. We can create bulk quantities of chemicals from 11,000 gallons, on down to five-gallon containers.”

Expanding the team

The complexity of the project, specifically identifying the types of pumps that would be needed to ensure the plant would operate at its most efficient and cost-effective best, meant expanding the team to include Joe Cervantes, pump sales engineer for Anderson Pump & Process, EMCO's long-time pump supplier.

“When EMCO wanted to expand, they knew us and came to me to ask my thoughts on what pumping technologies to use,” said Mr Cervantes. “In addition to the main storage and packaging areas, they were planning on adding a couple of operations that were better suited to diaphragm-pump technologies. They had been using some old air-diaphragm technologies in the North Chicago plant, but we knew there were some newer technologies available that could aid in the efficiency of their operations.”

Wilden Hygienic Series AODD Pumps help enable Emco to transfer, blend and package pharmaceutical-and food-grade products that meet USP and FDA requirements.

The design team’s ideas for the plant included a “warm room,” where raw liquids that require a higher ambient temperature would be stored in 17 tanks, and a “clean room,” where EMCO can blend and package food-and pharmaceutical-grade products. For these areas, Mr Cervantes recommended various models of air operated double-diaphragm (AODD) pumps from Wilden. Since 2008, Wilden has been a leading brand from PSG, a Dover Company.

The warm room features 17 storage tanks that contain a range of different chemicals, from hazardous to viscous, the loading and unloading of which are accomplished with Wilden Advanced Series FIT AODD Pumps.

Mr Serdar, who designed the layout and installed the equipment in the warm room, used two inch bolted stainless steel PS800 Advanced Series FIT models designed by Wilden to “drop in” to existing AODD pump piping configurations. The Advanced FIT AODD pumps also improved the warm room’s operational efficiency and cost-effectiveness as they feature the new Pro-Flo SHIFT Air Distribution System (ADS), offering up to 60 per cent savings in air consumption.

Higher flow rates

The Advanced FIT pumps offer higher flow rates and pumping efficiency, which will further enhance the air-consumption performance of the Pro-Flo SHIFT, or any ADS the pump may be fitted with. Finally, the optimized wetted path of the FIT pumps reduce fluid pressure drop during the pumping process, giving the pump the ability to produce higher flow rates in relation to energy consumption.

“We wanted better product containment and the Wilden Advanced Series Pro-Flo SHIFT FIT has been a foolproof pump that has given us great performance with no worries,” said Mr Serdar. “We chose these Wilden pumps because we wanted an economical fit for this application and they were the most cost-effective because of the energy savings.”

EMCO's decision to construct a clean room at the new facility will better position the company as a hygienic manufacturer when expected modifications to US Pharmacopeial Convention (USP) and US Food & Drug Administration (FDA) regulations come into effect in 2015. Emco is using two Wilden Hygienic Series (HS) AODD models in the clean room.

“We decided to build the clean room to ISO-certification standards and not many manufacturers even have a true clean room right now,” said Mr Korman. “When the new rules arrive we will be positioned where no-one else will have what we have. The moral of the story is that if you team up with the right people and design systems per the requirements, you’re going to get a great result.”