We've been writing about different ways to make your oil water separation process easier. Here is #3.
Last time we talked about how, if you use a high shear pump to pump to an oil water separator all bets are off.
Won't work and you'll be creating A MECHANICAL EMULSION THAT WILL NEVER SEPARATE IN YOUR LIFETIME!
Wait a minute, yes there is a way to work around this problem at least partially. A REAL WORKAROUND!
If you can operate your pump on the downstream side of the oil water separator (OWS) you will be pulling or sucking the water thru the separator and not churning it up prior to entering the separation chambers.
Our BRUTE marine oil water separators are set up this way so we can use our high efficiency centrifugal pump on these separators, and not create a separation problem. The cost of doing that is that your pump suction head is reduced, but if you set up a series of back-flow preveneter valves the cost is not too great and considering that you can use standard pumps if your oil water separator is pressurized, all the better and all the easier to do.
Another workaround for this problem is to use a peristaltic pump or what is often called a hose pump. It works the same way your stomach moves food thru your digestive system. “The involuntary constriction and relaxation of the muscles of the intestine or another canal, creating wavelike movements that push the contents of the canal forward." You've seen this in action before but maybe did not recognize it. If you've ever stepped on a garden hose that has water sitting in it your body weight on the hose displaces or pushes some of the water out. These “hose pump” use a pair of motor driven cams to squeeze water out of the hose which is held in the pump housing. These are often used to pump very thick stuff like mud, drilling muds, and even concrete. As such the hose is a consumeable since it will eventually wear out due to the constant squeezing and wear inside as material is moved thru it. It's said that a “hose pump” can suck a bowling ball out of the basement -thru a 1” hose. That really sucks...................hmmmmmmm