Exploring the Different Types of Pumps for Irrigation

Water pumps are commonly used machines in agriculture to supply water for crop irrigation. These devices use mechanical force to move liquids or gases from one place to another. By increasing the pressure of the fluid, pumps can carry water from a low-pressure region to a high-pressure one, allowing it to flow against the force of gravity.

Pumps are typically constructed using sturdy metals or alloys like stainless steel, chromium, or nickel to ensure durability. They can be powered by different means, including electricity, wind, or manual operation.

Given their importance in agriculture, pumps are essential devices for irrigating crops. Various types of agricultural pumps are available for irrigation, with some designed to meet specific agricultural needs.

Types of Pumps in the Agriculture Sector

Two main types of pumps are used in agriculture: positive displacement pumps and dynamic pumps.

1. Positive Displacement Pumps

As the name implies, positive displacement pumps displace or move water from one place to another using mechanical energy. They consist of suction and discharge sides, with the fluid entering through the suction valve and exiting through the outlet valve. Pumps use motion to trap fluid in a compartment, then discharge it through a nozzle. Each working cycle of the pump displaces a fixed amount of fluid, making them constant volume pumps.

However, a safety valve with positive displacement pumps is important because it can handle extremely high-pressure fluids. They are typically operated manually and cannot pump water from deeper levels. Nonetheless, they can be used with all types of crops.

Advantages of Positive Displacement Pumps

Positive displacement water pumps offer several advantages that make them suitable for various applications, including:

  • Delivering very high pressures.
  • Handling fluids of high or low viscosity, with the flow rate increasing as the fluid’s viscosity increases.
  • Having high efficiency.
  • Maintaining a constant rate of flow despite changes in pressure.
  • Being very durable and inexpensive.
  • Handling air or gas contamination in the liquid flow.

Applications of Positive Displacement Pumps

These pumps find a variety of applications in agriculture and other industries. Some common uses of these pumps include:

  • Irrigating fields can pump water from a low-pressure source to a higher elevation.
  • Pumping spray paints, oils, and high-force washing applications in various industries.
  • Transporting oil or gas through pipelines, as positive displacement pumps, can deliver high pressure steadily.
  • Manufacturing chemicals, as these pumps can handle corrosive, abrasive, and viscous fluids, making them useful for processing chemicals.
  • Transporting slurry or waste in waste treatment plants, as these pumps can handle thick, solid-laden fluids that would clog other pump types.

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2. Dynamic Pumps

Dynamic pumps are another type commonly used in agriculture and other industries. Unlike positive displacement pumps, dynamic pumps increase the kinetic energy of the fluid by mechanical motion. The most common type of dynamic pump is the centrifugal pump, which consists of a rotating impeller that accelerates the fluid and directs it into the discharge pipe.

One advantage of dynamic pumps is that they can handle fluids with solid contaminants, such as sandy or saline water. In addition, they are often fitted with filters to remove these contaminants before the fluid is pumped. As a result, dynamic pumps can be used for various applications in agriculture, including irrigating crops and transferring water between tanks.

3. Centrifugal Pumps

Centrifugal pumps are another pump implemented in agriculture, particularly for irrigation. It uses a rotating impeller to move fluid through the pump. The impeller draws the fluid by applying centrifugal force to expel it through the discharge valve.

Centrifugal pumps are typically submerged in water, with the rotation of the impeller transferring kinetic energy to the fluid from the motor. These pumps are usually powered by electrical energy, which can come from various sources such as the public power supply, solar panels, wind turbines, or hydroelectric generators.

Water Pumps

Pumps that fall under the category of centrifugal pumps for agriculture:

A. Submersible pumps

Submersible water pumps are a type of centrifugal pump installed below the water’s surface, typically in a well, lake, or pond. These pumps are designed with waterproof components and do not require priming.

Submersible pumps can be single-stage or multi-stage, depending on their number of impellers. Multi-stage submersible pumps comprise several single-stage pumps in series and can generate higher pressures and flow rates.

Submersible pumps are typically powered by electrical energy but can also be powered by solar, wind, or hydro energy. These pumps are particularly useful when the water source is shallow and are known for their high efficiency and reliability.

B. Turbine Pumps

Turbine pumps can be installed both above ground and underwater. They are commonly used with wells, lakes, or ponds. The vertical turbine pump is the most common type. However, they have lower efficiency compared to submersible pumps. Turbine pumps are usually operated by electrical energy and can be operated by solar, wind, hydro, etc. They can be used typically when the water source level is low.

C. End-suction centrifugal pumps

End-suction centrifugal pumps are also widely used for irrigation as they are efficient and can handle various flow rates and pressures. They are also known as single-stage pumps, as they have a single impeller that is used to increase the velocity of the fluid. End-suction pumps are commonly used for small to medium irrigation applications, such as watering gardens, lawns, or small agricultural fields. They are easy to install, maintain, and repair and can be operated by electric or diesel engines.

D. Jet Pumps

Jet pumps, also known as hydraulic lifts or surface pumps, are typically used for pumping water from wells or other water sources where the water level is too low for other types of pumps to operate. They create a high-speed jet of water that creates a partial vacuum, which draws water up through a suction pipe. While they are less efficient than other pumps and have a lower flow rate, they can be useful in certain situations where other pumps cannot be used.

Advantages of Centrifugal Pumps:

  • They have a simple design.
  • They are less prone to leaks.
  • They have a less frictional loss.

Applications of Centrifugal Pumps:

  • They are commonly used for irrigation.
  • They can handle hazardous liquids.
  • They are used in mining, petrochemicals, and household appliances.
  • They are used in hydraulic control systems.
  • They are used by firefighters and in residential buildings to fill tanks with water.


So, when choosing water pumps, you can go for the centrifugal pumps, the most common type used in irrigation and other industries due to their simple design, minimal risk of leaks, and low friction loss. Submersible and turbine pumps are also efficient options for water sources located underwater. End-suction centrifugal and jet pumps have limitations but can be useful in certain scenarios. Different types of pumps have unique advantages and are suited for specific applications. As a leading pump manufacturer, we can provide various types of pumps to suit your requirement.

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