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In designing any installation in which a centrifugal pump is used, careful attention must be paid to check the minimum pressure which will arise at any point. If this pressure is less than the vapor pressure at the pumping temperature, vaporization will occur and the pump may not be capable of developing the required suction head. Moreover, if the liquid contains gases, these may come out of solution giving rise to packets of gas. This phenomenon is known as cavitation and may result in mechanical damage to the pump as the bubbles collapse. The onset of cavitation is accompanied by a marked increase in noise and vibration as the bubbles collapse, and a loss of head.

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Last Modified on: 14-Sep-2014

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