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Calculating

Pump Head
How to calculate the Pump Head for Open and Closed Systems

6/27/2012 Vemco,Inc.

Ca alculatin ng Pump p Head

B Beforewecandiscusspump phead,wemu ustunderstandthedifferen ncebetweena anopenhydro onicsysteman ndaclosed h hydronicsyste em.Itisimportanttoknowwhetherthepump p servesa anopenorac closedsystem,becausethep pumphead c calculationdep pendsonthetype t ofsystem mthatthepum mpserves.
terruptsforce Inaclosedsystem,thefluidisnotexpose edtoabreakinthepipings systemthatint edflowatanypoint.Inan o opensystem,it i is.Inaclose edsystem,the efluidtravelsthrough t acon ntinuousclose edpipingsyste emthatstartsandendsin t thesameplace ethereisno obreakinthe epipingloop.The T vastmajo orityofhydron nicpipingsyste ed.Themost emsareclose c commonopen nsystemisthe ecoolingtowe erportionofachilledwater rsystem,asde epictedbelow w.Abreakinthepiping s systemoccurswherethewa aterexitsthespraynozzles, ,andisexpose edtoairinthefillsectiono ofthetower.T Thewater c collectsinthecoolingtower rsumpbefore ebeingpumpe edaroundthe eloopagain.N Notethatthec chilledwaters sideofthis d diagram(theright r side)isclosed.Because eitisclosed,an a expansion tankabsorbsanythermale expansionoft thefluid. O Opensystemsdontrequire eexpansiontanks,astheflu uidisnaturally yfreetoundergothermale expansion.

F Figure1:Close edandOpenHydronic H Syst tems W WhatisPump pHead?

UnitsofMeasure:In I theU.S.sys stem,headismeasured m eith herinPSIorin n"feetofhead d"(usuallyabb breviatedto "). "feet" Pump pHeadisthetotalresistancethatapump pmustoverco ome.Itconsist tsofthefollow wingcompone ents:
o

StaticHead d:Staticheadrepresentsth henetchange inheight,inf feet,thatthepumpmustov vercome.It thestaticheadiszerobeca appliesonlyinopensyst tems.Notetha atinaclosed loopsystem,t ausethefluid eofthesystem mpushesthefluiduptheo othersideofth hesystem,sothepumpdoe ononeside esnotneed toovercom meanyelevation. FrictionHe ead:Thisisals socalledpress suredrop.Wh enfluidflowsthroughanysystemcompo onent, frictionresults.Thiscaus sesalossinpr ressure.Comp ponentscausingfrictioninc cludeboilers,c chillers, piping,hea atexchangers, ,coils,valves,andfittings.T Thepumpmustovercomet thisfriction.Frictionhead isusuallyexpressed e inunitscalled"feetofhead."A footoffrictio onheadisequ ualtoliftingth hefluidone footofstat ticheight. PressureHead: H Whenliq quidispumpe edfromavess selatonepres ssuretoavess selatanother rpressure, pressurehe eadexists.Commonapplica ationsinclude econdensatep pumpsandbo oilerfeedpum mps. Condensatepumpsoftendeliverwate erfromanatm mosphericreceivertoadea aeratoroperat tingat5

Ca alculatin ng Pump p Head

PSIG,mean ningthatinad dditiontotheotherheads,t thepumpmustovercomeapressurehea adof5PSIG. OnePSIGequals e 2.31fee et,sothediffe erentialhead inthisapplica ationis5X2.3 31=11.6.Pre essurehead isaconside erationonlyin nsomeopensystems. s VelocityHe ead:Accelerat tingwaterfro omastandstill orlowvelocit tyatthestart tingpointtoahigher velocityatanendingpoi intrequiresen nergy.Inclose edsystemsthe estartingpoin ntisthesame easthe gvelocityequa alsthefinalve elocity,sovelo ocityheadisn nota endingpoint.Thereforethebeginning consideration.Inanopensystem,thevelocityhead distheoretica allyaconsidera ation,butthe epipeline u inhydron nicsaresolow wthatthishea adisnegligible e,andisignor red.(Notethat tthe velocitiesused velocityheadisdefinedbytheformul laV2/2gwhere eVisthefluid dvelocityinfe eetpersecond dandgis thegravitationalconstan nt32feet/second2.Therefo oreattypicalvelocitiesof26fps,thevelocityhead nofafoot.Sin nceheadlosscalculationsa arereallyestim mates,thissm mallfigurebeco omes isafraction insignifican nt).

S So,forhydron nicapplication ns,wecansay ythat: 1. Forclo osedsystems: :Pumphead=thesumofall a frictionpre essuredrops Where: onpressuredr rop=pipingpressure p drop+terminalun nitpressuredr rop+sourceu unitpressured drop*+ Frictio valvepressuredrop p+accessorie espressuredro op. pensystems:Pump P head=thesumofal llfrictionlosse esplusthesta aticliftofthefluidplusthe epressure 2. Forop head. t boiler,chiller,orheatex xchanger,whi ichcreatesthe ehotorchilled dwater. *The"sourceunit"isdefinedasthe S StepsinCalculatingthePum mpHead B Basically,weneed n toplugvaluesintothe eproperformu ulaabove. S Step1:Layoutthepipingsy ystemusinglo ogicalrouting gasdetermine edbythebuil ldingrequirem ments.Notee each t terminalunitand a itsGPM. S Step2:Selectpipesizesfor reachsegmen nt,basedonproper p velocity yandpressur redrop. T ThegraphsbelowarefromtheASHRAEFundamentals F Book.Recom mendedveloc citiesare:
o o

o 2"andUnd der:2fpsmini imumto4fps smaximum PipeSizesof PipeSizesof o over2":.75 5ft.ofP/100equivalentfe eetminimumt to4ft.ofP/10 00equivalent tfeet maximum

W WherePisthe eheadloss(als socalledfricti ionlossorpressuredrop).

Ca alculatin ng Pump p Head

Ca alculatin ng Pump p Head

T Therecommen ndedrangesensure e thatthepipingsyste emwillbequie et,consumere easonablepumphorsepow wer,andbe ndedbasedonthefactthat r reasonablyeco onomicaltoin nstall.Notethattheminimu umvelocitiesa arerecommen tlower v velocitieswillallow a airtoco ollectathighpoints, p withth hepossibleres sultofairbind ding.
O Oncethelayou utandpipesiz zeforeachsectionhasbeendetermined followthesesteps: S Step3:Determ mineFrictionDuetoSource e,Terminalan ndAccessory EquipmentIn ncluding:
o o o

dterminalEqu uipment:Cons sultmanufactu urerscatalogs rselections. Sourceand sorcomputer Accessoryitems i includefilters,straine ers,checkvalv vesormultipu urposevalvesthatcouldha avea significantpressuredrop pthatwouldnot n becovered dundertheeq quivalentfeet tofpipingrule eofthumb. inevalveDPrefer r tocurves sorCvratings s.ACvisdefin nedastheflow watwhichthe evalvewill Todetermi havearesistanceof1PS SIG(2.31feet) ).Sincethepre essuredropis sproportional ltothesquare eoftheflow hefollowingfo ormulatocalc culatethepre ssuredropthroughthevalv veforanyflow wrate: rate,useth PDInFeet=(FlowRate/ /RatedCv)2X2.31

E Example:AvalvehasaCvof o 10.Flowthroughthevalveis21GPM.W Whatistheva alveDPinfee etofhead? PDinFeet=(21/10)2X2.31= 2 10.2 S SpecialConsid deration:PressureDropsIn nPSIandConv vertingPSIto Head S Sometimespre essuredropswill w begivenin nPSIunitsins steadoffeeto ofhead.ToconvertPSIunits stofeetofhe ead: PDinfeet=PDinPSIX2.31 2 E Example:Apla ateandframe eheatexchang gerprintoutsh howsapressu uredropof8.5 5PSI.WhatPinfeetmustb beaddedto t thepumpforthis t item? A Answer:FeetinHead=8.5PSIX2.31ft./P PSI=19.64ft. S Step4:Determ minetheStati icHead(Open nSystemsOnl ly) T Thestatichead dissimplythe etotalheightthatthepump pmustliftthe efluid.Itappliesonlyinope ensystems.Re emember t thatthestaticheadisthedi ifferenceinhe eightthatthepumpwillbe requiredtoprovide. Inthedrawing gbelow,show wingacoolingtower, t thesta aticheightmig ghtappeartobe40.Howev ver,thewaterlevelinthe t towersumpis28abovethe epump,sothe epumpmustonlyprovidea netliftof12 2.Therefore,thestatichea adis12.

Ca alculatin ng Pump p Head

F Figure2,Static cHeightExam mple S Step5:Determ minethePressureHead(So omeOpenSys stemsOnly) If fthesystemis sopen,determ minethepressuredifferent tialrequired,iifany.Dontfo orgettomulti iplypressured differentials inPSIX2.31/P PSI. S Step6:Determ minethe"Wo orstPressureDrop D Loop"an ndEstimateth heFrictionLossforthatLoo opbyUsingE Equivalent F Feet" B Becausefitting gsresultinmo orepressuredrop d thanplain npipe,weacc countforthem mbyusing"eq quivalentleng gth."The e equivalentlengthofapiping gcircuitisthe eactualmeasu uredlengthpl usanallowan nceforallthefittings(elbow ws,tees, v valves,etc.).

Longmethod m forde eterminingeq quivalentleng gth:

T Thetablebelo owliststhenumberofequiv valentfeetofpipingforvar iousfittingsandaccessories:

Ca alculatin ng Pump p Head

T Tousethisme ethod,addthe eequivalentle engthofeachitemintheflu uidspathtoth heactualleng gthofpipingtogetthe t totalequivalen ntfeetofpipin ng.

Shortc cutmethodfo ordeterminin ngequivalentlength:

D Designersofte enskiptheabo ovemethodandsimplymultiplytheactu ualpipingleng gthtimes1.5t to1.75togetthe e equivalentleng gth.Thisprov videsspeedan ndareasonabl lyaccuratees timationfor" "typical"hydro onicpipingsys stems.As w withanyruleof o thumb,how wever,watchout o foroddballsituations(t theboilerroom mis2blocksa awayfromthe ebuilding,a p pipingsystemwithanextremenumberoffittings,etc).Insuchsitua ations,thelongmethodpro ovidesbettera accuracy. N Nowmultiplythefrictionlo ossper100of fpipingfromtheASHRAEc chartstimesth heequivalent tlengthinthe e"worst" lo ooptogetthe etotalpipingfrictionloss.Selecttheworstloopbyins spection,ifpo ossible.Calcula ateseveralbr ranchesif t thereisadoub bt.Thefriction nintheworst tloopisusedasthefriction nhead.

Ca alculatin ng Pump p Head

F Figure3,Wors stPressureDr ropCircuit N Notethattheworstloopissimply s thatth heloopthatre esultsinthela argesttotalpre essuredrop.D Donotaddpre essuredrops f fromotherpar rallelloops.In nthedrawingabove,assumethatthepre essuredropth hroughCoil3a anditsvalvea arehigher t thanthepress suredropthro oughCoils1an nd2.Assumingthatthebra anchpipingforallthreecirc cuitsissimilar, ,the"worst c case"totalfric ctionlossloop pisshowninlightblue.Itwo ouldbeerron eoustoaddthepressuredropsofthepipingshown inblack. N Notes ecircuitswithlesspressuredropthanthe e"worst"circu uitwillbebala ancedinthefi ieldbypartiallyclosing 1. Those balanc cingvalves(no otshownabov ve). 2. Ifther rearedifferen ntpipesizesonthecircuit,the t circuitma yhavetobea analyzedinse ections,becausethe pressu uredrop/footmayvarybysection. s Thisis sonegoodre asonforselec ctingallpiping gatthesamepressure dropper p 100.Itsim mplifiestheca alculationscon nsiderably. S Safetyfactors Y Youmaywishtoaddasafet tyfactortothecalculatedhead h fortwor reasons:

Jobsiteconditionsmay m notallow wdirectrouting gofpipingas shownonthe eplan.Extrale engthandextr raelbows tion. resultinaddedfrict Thein nteriorpipewallsbecomero oughovertim meduetocorro osion,especia allyinopensy ystems,where efreshwater makeu upbringsinasteadysupply yofcorrosioncausingoxyge en.Thisincrea asesfriction.V Varioussource es recom mmendtotalsa afetyallowanc cesof1525% %forfrictionca alculations.Notethatthefrictiontablesassumecold water r,whichresult tsinmorefrict tionthanhotwater.Theref fore,ifyouare edesigningahotwatersys stem,you alread dyhaveasafe etymarginof faround12%.Becarefulof excessivesafe etyfactors.Th heyresultino oversized pump pimpellerstha atcausewaste edenergy!

P PressureDrop pCorrectionsfor f Glycol. S Somesystemsutilizeeitherethyleneorpropylene p glycolmixturesin nlieuofwater r.Thesefluidsresultinhigherpump h headsthando oeswater.Fordiscussionsof ftheeffectsof o glycol,conta actyourlocalVemco,Inc.o office w www.vemcoin nc.com

Ca alculatin ng Pump p Head