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Peristaltic pump


A peristaltic pump is a type of positive displacement pump used for pumping a variety of fluids. The fluid is contained within a flexible tube fitted inside a circular pump casing (though linear peristaltic pumps have been made). A rotor with a number of 'rollers', 'shoes' or 'wipers' attached to the external circumference compresses the flexible tube. As the rotor turns, the part of tube under compression closes (or 'occludes') thus forcing the fluid to be pumped to move through the tube. Additionally, as the tube opens to its natural state after the passing of the cam ('restitution') fluid flow is induced to the pump. This process is called peristalsis and is used in many biological systems such as the gastrointestinal tract.



Peristaltic pumps are typically used to pump clean or sterile fluids because the pump cannot contaminate the fluid, or to pump aggressive fluids because the fluid cannot contaminate the pump. Some common applications include pumping aggressive chemicals, high solids slurries and other materials where isolation of the product from the environment, and the environment from the product, are critical.

High and low pressure pumps

Higher pressure peristaltic hose pumps which can typically operate against up to 16 bar, typically use shoes and have casings filled with lubricant to prevent abrasion of the exterior of the pump tube and to aid in the dissipation of heat, and use reinforced tubes, often called 'hoses'. This class of pump is often called a 'hose pump'.

Lower pressure peristaltic pumps, typically have dry casings and use rollers, use non-reinforced tubing. This class of pump is sometimes called a 'tube pump' or 'tubing pump'.

Peristaltic Pumps


Because the only part of the pump in contact with the fluid being pumped is the interior of the tube, it is easy to sterilize and clean the inside surfaces of the pump. Furthermore, since there are no moving parts in contact with the fluid, peristaltic pumps are inexpensive to manufacture. Their lack of valves, seals and glands makes them comparatively inexpensive to maintain, and the use of a hose or tube makes for a relatively low-cost maintenance item compared to other pump types.


It is important to select tubing with appropriate chemical resistance towards the liquid being pumped. Types of tubing commonly used in peristaltic pumps include:

Trade names include Tygon and Viton.

Typical applications

  • Dialysis machines
  • Open-heart bypass pump machines
  • Infusion pump
  • AutoAnalyzer
  • Sewage sludge
  • Aquariums, particularly calcium reactors
  • Analytical chemistry experiments
  • Carbon monoxide monitors (e.g. at Longannet power station)
  • Industrial dishwasher rinse aid dispensers
  • Food manufacturing
  • Beverage dispensing
  • Pharmaceutical production
  • Tabletop decorative fountains and waterwalls
This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Peristaltic_pump". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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