The Benefits Of Using An Electric Pump For Quarrying

What Are The Costs And Benefits Of Electric Over Diesel?

Dewatering and slurry pumps have been powered by either diesel or electricity for decades.  Now that the sustainability revolution is underway, the economics, technology and supply-chain demands all point to electricity taking the lead.

There are plenty of ways to get the job done when it comes to quarrying and water processing, as any quarry site manager knows. But if you're looking for practical steps that will make your operation more efficient and reliable, an electric pump is now most often your best bet. 

For a deep dive into the choice between electric pumps vs diesel powered units, download our White Paper Diesel or Electric Dewatering Pumps?”.

But for now, here are five benefits of electric water pumps:

Which Is More Reliable, Electric Or Diesel?

Electric pumps are far more reliable than their diesel counterparts, especially in cold weather or high elevations. Traditionally, basic diesel engine problems could often be sorted by a mechanically minded worker within your quarry, but nowadays with more complex equipment and new regulations, this is rarely practical or safe.

Electric motors have less vibration and lower heat than diesel powered pump equipment. In other words, electric pumps have less chance of breakdowns and malfunctions. You'll spend less time maintaining your equipment and more time getting the job done.

Increase In Production

Because electric pumps are so reliable and require less maintenance than their diesel-powered cousins, they can increase production by allowing you to spend more time working on other tasks. Whether that means spending more time finding new quarries or simply completing more jobs each day, an electric pump will help you get more done in less time – which means more cost savings for your company!

Electric Pumps Are More Efficient

Electrically driven pumps are more efficient than diesel pumps, meaning you use much less power to achieve the same amount of water transfer or head pressure. Despite a century of improvement, even the most modern diesel engines lose 60-70% of their energy through heat, noise and friction, meaning they are only 30-40% efficient.  Compare this to electric motors converting over 70% of energy into mechanical power, for instance the SlurryPro dewatering pump which is driven by an electric motor with 80% efficiency.  Whilst installation of electrically powered equipment might take additional time initially, this is mitigated by saving you the task of repeatedly refuelling.

Reduce Cost

The cost of diesel has gone up significantly in recent years and months, with the perfect storm of oil supply issues coupled with duty rates penalising emission-emitters. In some areas, electric power is already cheaper than diesel!  There is approximately 10Kwh of energy per litre of diesel so as an example of the fuel savings you could make: 

A 45Kwh electric slurry pump running at maximum capacity would require an equivalent diesel-powered pump using around 9 litres of diesel fuel per hour.  At £1.58/litre for fuel it would cost £14.22 per hour, with electricity costs of 17.72p/Kwh calculating to £7.97 an hour – nearly half the running cost.  Considering that running costs are typically over 80% of a quarry pump’s lifetime cost, this makes diesel vs electric one of your easier decisions when budgeting.

The bottom line; changing a diesel pump for a well specified new electric one brings significant cost/profit improvements.  There are many different sizes and types of quarry pump, but an average payback time of 3,000 hours operation is not unreasonable, and that’s going by fuel savings alone.  Ask an Atlantic Pumps consultant for costed recommendations for your particular site needs.

Better For The Environment

Electricity is made from an increasing variety of sustainable sources – wind, solar, hydroelectric dams, nuclear power plants, with green-hydrogen generation on the horizon too. However long diesel will be around for, clean energy will become continually more available and incentivised as we push towards net-zero.  Therefore, an electric pump is a better choice for the environment and business now - and into the future.

Electric pumps have zero emissions and fuel pollution risks on site and require less decontamination when they are decommissioned or recycled at the end of their lifespan. The importance of carbon footprint and emission reduction is well appreciated by companies in the quarrying, mineral processing and recycled aggregate industry.  When you choose an electric pump, you are working towards a greener future for your business and the planet.

If you are looking for improvements in your abrasive fluid transfer pumps or dewatering system in the UK, contact your Atlantic Pumps advisor today for practical, no obligation advice.