To enable the Thermofluidics NIFTE to pump water from deep wells, or to enable it to pump water in a single stage to over 100 metres, Thermofluidics is developing a new Hydraulic Ram technology, invented by Tom Smith, called a High Pressure Double Acting Hydraulic Ram pump (DAHR pump).
Although conceived initially as an optional add-on for the NIFTE, it may also be driven by other types of reciprocating pump, such as treadle pumps and hand pumps, as well as being modifiable to work in conjunction with an internal combustion engine.
The Hydraulic Ram will integrate well with Thermofluidics’ NIFTE pump and we predict that the combination of the NIFTE and DAHR pumps will offer the most cost effective, innovative and environmentally sustainable high head pumping solution for individual farmers, businesses and communities.
The Thermofluidics Hydraulic Ram technology will have many potential applications in water supply for drinking and sanitation as well as agriculture. These will include deep-well/borehole pumping applications and pressurising surface water for long distance horizontal or vertical water transport.
Thermofluidics has developed an alpha “proof-of-concept” prototype, simultaneously in our laboratory in Oxford and at our U.K. field trial site in Mid-Devon. If U.K. tests are successful, we plan to develop this jointly with the Centre for Irrigation Technology in Fresno, California later in 2011.
To see a video of the latest Hydraulic Ram prototype see here. The video shows a Beta prototype DAHR pump operating in a stairwell pumping a 30 metre total head (15 metres above/below ground level). A video of the Beta prototype DAHR pump specially narrated by Tom Law, Thermofluidics’ Chief Prototype Engineer, is shown here.
A film of an earlier (alpha) prototype, with a description of the working principle can be viewed here.