The Best Pump for Moving Heavy Slurry

Learn about the challenges involved with pumping heavier slurries and the top pumps used for heavy slurry applications.
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EDDY Pump’s unique pump design originated in 1984. Throughout the years the EDDY Pump has been put to the test in countless applications involving heavy slurry. Time and time the EDDY Pump has provided value greater than that of traditional pumps in heavy slurry applications. The large internal flow path enables the pump to pass extremely large solids, and the recessed rotor reduces the potential for wear due to the abrasive nature of heavy slurry. Added to this, the unique ability to provide a turbulent flow means that the operation of the EDDY Pump avoids allowing heavy slurry to settle at the bottom of the liquid path, which can decrease potential clogging issues internal to the pump.

This article includes:

  • Difficulties Pumping Heavy Slurry
  • Selecting a Pump for Heavier Slurries
  • Selecting a Motor for Heavy Slurry
  • EDDY Pump – The Best Pump for Heavy Slurries



Difficulties Pumping Heavy Slurry

Slurries are very difficult to pump, and many traditional pump types are not suited for this type of application.  Heavy slurries are abrasive, solid laden, highly viscous, and much heavier than water.  Although pumping slurry is very difficult, pumping heavy slurry is much more challenging due to the increased weight of the material.  This type of application is extremely difficult for water pumps and other types of centrifugal pumps because they are not designed to pump heavy slurries.  Water pumps and centrifugal pumps are commonly misapplied to slurry and heavy slurry applications, but are more suited for applications that involve thin fluids. Ultra duty mud and slurry pumps are specifically designed for the harder to pump, heavier slurries found in many industrial settings such as mining, manufacturing, and construction applications.

Compare Weights of Materials

Unit of Measure Type of Material Weight
1 Square Meter Water 1 metric ton
1 Square Meter Mud 1.73 metric tons
1 Square Meter Sand/Water 1.92 metric tons
1 Square Meter Concrete 2.5 metric tons

Applying a Slurry Pump to Heavier Slurries

When pumping heavy slurries it is critical to maintain a constant flow through the pipeline, the flow of the material must flow at a specific rate given the type of slurry material that is being pumped.  The specific velocity of flow can be measured in feet per second.  The continued movement of the material through the pipeline assists with avoiding settling at the bottom portion of the piping. Applying the pump correctly requires pre-planning and determining what the critical flow rate must be given the heavy slurry material being pumped.

The critical flow rate is also defined as a flow that involves turbulence, or is described as turbulent, not laminar.  In this regard, critical flow rate is relational to the specific velocity of the fluid that achieves a turbulent flow.  This turbulence of the fluid is important to avoid settling of the material in the pipeline.  Critical velocity changes due to the density and coefficient viscosity of the fluid.  Although determining critical velocity of a heavy slurry is beyond the scope of this article, it is important to note that the EDDY Pump is designed to produce a turbulent flow due to the unique design of the rotor.  Traditional pumps in slurry applications, such as centrifugal pumps, produce a laminar flow which is counterproductive and one reason they are not as well suited for heavy slurry applications as an EDDY Pump.

Red Mud - Bauxite - EDDY Discharge Line

Selecting a Pump for Heavier Slurries

To avoid selecting and misapplying the wrong pump for a heavy slurry application, there are some important considerations that must be adhered to.

  • The pump chosen must be capable of generating a turbulent flow that can maintain the suspension of the slurry to avoid settling the slurry at the bottom of the piping.
  • Another important factor in selecting a pump is selecting one designed with a large flow-through liquid path that allows easy passage of heavy slurry.  This alone helps to determine what types of pumps are well suited for heavy slurry applications and what types are not.
  • Strong suction at the inlet port of the pump is important so that the pump can draw the heavy slurry into the pump so that it can move the fluid downstream.
  • The most appropriate materials of construction are important to avoid extensive wear due to the abrasive characteristics of heavy slurries.

Selecting a Motor For Heavy Slurry

With heavier materials, the motors driving the pump will be pulling much more power compared to move the same quantity of a lighter, less dense material. This requires a larger pump motor that can handle heavier materials without wearing down. The amount of power a pump requires is calculated from the discharge head, flow rate, and specific gravity of the material to be pumped. It is vital to verify that the power rating of the selected pump is higher than the calculated power required after considering reasonable variations in operating conditions.

Slurry pumps can be powered hydraulically or electrically. While there are pros and cons to each type of motor, one motor may be preferable over another simply due to logistics. The motor needs to be matched for the pump and the application for optimal performance.



EDDY Pump – The Best Pump for Heavy Slurries

The EDDY Pump is unique in comparison to other heavy slurry pumps on the market. Eddy Pump technology is based on the principle of Tornado Motion of liquid as a synchronized swirling column along the center of intake pipe that induces agitated mixing of solid particles with liquid, creating suction strong enough for solid particles to travel upwards into the volute and generating pressure differential for desired discharge.  The eddy current is caused by the pressure differential generated by the rotor, and strengthened by turbulent flow patterns in the volute and suction tube.  The EDDY Pump is also designed with an extremely large flow path that allows heavy slurries to flow through the pump without becoming clogged.  The large flow through design also allows the passage of large solids that are almost the size of the inlet port of the pump.  

Added to the many features and benefits of the EDDY Pump, the pump is available with the highest quality materials of construction to ensure the pump can withstand the extensive wear and abrasive characteristics of heavy slurries.  Proven in countless heavy slurry applications, the EDDY Pump is the premier slurry pump available.

Best Applications – Industries Most Served

The EDDY Pump Corporation is a premier manufacturer of pumping and dredging equipment.  If you are pumping or dredging slurry, high solids, extremely viscous material, paste, high abrasives (sand & gravel) and material filled with solids, then you found the best suited product for the job.  Go to:  or Call Us!

Mining, Fly Ash, Coal Ash, Oil, Fracking, Gas, Wastewater, Pulp and Paper, Chemical, Energy, Water Municipalities, Irrigation, and Dredging Companies.  For Access to Complete Product Line Go to: 


Why EDDY Pumps Are Better – Highlights

This video shows how EDDY Pump transports high slurry and abrasive materials. Featured dredge pump equipment includes the Remote Operated Subdredge, Diver Operated Pump and a Excavator Attachment Dredge Pump.

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Let our sales or engineering support help in your grit pump and wastewater equipment selection. Call (619) 258-7020