Iconic submersible pump celebrates five decades

April 04, 2017

Iconic submersible pump celebrates five decades

Efficiency, performance and durability wrapped in stainless steel. The popular SP pump from Grundfos still sets the standard for submersible pumps worldwide. This year the pump celebrates its 50th anniversary, and even though advanced improvements and new application options have been added, the original construction principle is intact.

Hidden beneath the ground the iconic SP pump supplies hundreds of millions of people across the globe with groundwater every day. The pump has been on the market for half a century, and continuous technology development has ensured the SP pump solid ground in the digital age. Advanced additions for controlling, monitoring and applications make the SP a modern classic.

“The SP pump remains a top product in our portfolio, which definitely says something about how innovative the original design was. The combination of design and material is still considered to be optimal, and through research and development, we have managed to keep the position as a product leader in regards to energy efficiency and opportunities for improvement,” says Søren Skjalm-Rasmussen, Director of Grundfos’ Water Utility Business Development.

In total there have been produced the staggering amount of four million SP pumps, since Poul Due Jensen presented the first edition in March 1967. The pump was the world's first submersible pump made entirely of stainless steel, and it quickly
became famous for its durability and efficiency. The pump even won a prestigious
design award for a harmonious balance between technology, function and form.

Part of future water solutions
In addition to drinking water supply the SP pump is also a preferred product for irrigation, where new digital solutions can give farmers the opportunity for remote control and monitoring of the irrigation system. The stainless steel construction makes the SP pump very resistant, therefore it is also used in mining, wherein a rough environment makes great demands on the durability of the pump. These days, there is also an increasing focus on not only energy efficiency, but also water efficiency.

“We must make sure that we use the groundwater resources that are available as wisely as possible. The potential of digitalizing irrigation systems is big and because the SP pump is an obvious candidate to be part of these solutions, it can play a crucial role in solving the serious water challenges the world is facing”, says
Søren Skjalm-Rasmussen.

Milestones on cutting-edge technology
Since 1967, the journey of the SP pump has featured several developmental milestones for Grundfos’ submersible pump program. In 1982, the introduction of the spline shaft in pumps for private water supplies cut down significantly on production time and material consumption, and in 1992 motors with built-in micro frequency converters were launched. When the latest generation of SP pumps with the name

SP7/9/11/14 was launched in 2014, the energy efficiency was taken to a whole
new level. Not only did it live up to, but it exceeded EU requirements for
energy efficiency of water pumps.

Many new application opportunities have also been added. With the Grundfos Solar Inverter (RSI) it is e.g. possible to connect the SP pump to solar cells and
thereby utilize sustainable energy, also in areas where a stable power grid is
not available.

It is estimated that there are currently about 1.3 million SP pumps installed
worldwide. The many new additions and application options makes the SP pump a
thriving classic, which now has proven its viability throughout 50 years, and
which undoubtedly will be a cornerstone of the Grundfos pump range for years to
come.


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