Date: 20 Apr 2014 (Latest version)

Peristaltic Pumps

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Synonyms

Diaphragm pump; Flexible member pump; Membrane pump; Valveless pumps

Definition

Peristaltic pumps are mechanical displacement pumps that induce flow in a fluid-filled, flexible-walled conduit through peristalsis – transport due to traveling contraction waves. While macroscale peristaltic pumps appear in a variety of configurations, micropumps based on this principle almost exclusively use the sequenced contraction and expansion of a small number of discrete actuators – typically three – placed along the fluid channel.

Overview

Peristaltic pumps emulate the biological process of peristalsis, in which material is moved through the esophagus or other anatomical passage by the contraction of smooth muscle in rhythmic waves. Figure 1 is a schematic of a typical rotary peristaltic pump, as implemented at the macroscale, in which a set of revolving contact elements creates a traveling compression wave in a section of a flexible tube. Figure 2 is a schematic of a macroscale implementation ...