Qdos metering pumps selected by Russian automotive plant

After a comprehensive evaluation and trial period, the Russian plant of steel wheel manufacturer, Mefro Wheels, has opted to use the latest Qdos 30 metering pumps from Watson-Marlow Pumps Group at its facility in Togliatti. Selected ahead of diaphragm metering pumps, the Qdos 30 pumps have been fully integrated into a complex process control system at the plant’s water treatment unit.

With over 4000 employees and a turnover of circa €500 million, Mefro Wheels GmbH operates nine plants worldwide, including two in Russia. As a group, it produces more than 20 million car wheels, 3.5 million truck wheels and 1.5 million wheels for tractors, agricultural and construction machinery every year.

Automated operation

The Togliatti facility, which is located some 800 km east of Moscow, was acquired by Mefro from established Russian car manufacturer Autovaz in 2011. Seeking to impart greater levels of automation at the factory, Mefro began to consider peristaltic pump technology for its water treatment unit. In 2012, a presentation of Qdos 30 metering pumps was delivered by Sergey Davidyan, Sales Engineer at Watson-Marlow, after which commenced an intensive period of demonstration and testing on site at Togliatti.

“After careful product consideration, together with colleagues from Camozzi Pneumatics [an Italian manufacturer of pneumatic components with responsibility for automating the wheel fabrication shop], a decision was made to use Qdos 30 pumps with ReNu pumpheads in our water treatment unit,” says a spokesman at Mefro. “The Qdos 30 pumps proved to be excellent both in the demonstration tests and in day-to-day operation.”

High quality

Being a German wheel manufacturer, Mefro has high expectations in terms of pump reliability, metering accuracy and performance characteristics, along with ease of integration, operation and maintenance. Fortunately, the Qdos specification matches up to the most rigorous of demands. For instance, the pumps deliver a flow range from 0.1 to 500 ml/min, and 7 bar, while integrating easily through IP66 manual, analogue and PROFIBUS control options. Featuring patented ReNu pumphead technology which is fully contained for safe, tool-free maintenance. Furthermore, the pump’s metering accuracy clearly caught the eye of Mefro engineers. 

“When compared with some manufacturers of metering pumps, including diaphragm types, we were surprised by the high accuracy characteristics declared in the brochure,” says the Mefro spokesman. “However, following operational measurements, these characteristics were substantiated completely.”

Impressive performance

The Qdos 30 pumps have now been running at Togliatti for over six months. The pumps operate at low flows, with the performance based on process requirements, these vary within a range from 3 to 5 litres per hour. The discharge pressure is determined by the piping length and height to which the liquid is pumped, and is approximately 4 bar. To control performance, a current analogue signal of 4-20mA is transmitted from the central control unit to the input of the Qdos 30 pump.

“It is particularly gratifying that no ReNu pumpheads have been replaced for the entire period of being in service, despite almost constant operation since the time of commissioning,” concludes the spokesman.


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