Applications and Advantages of Air Operated Double Diaphragm Pumps

AODD pumps (Air Operated Double Diaphragm pumps) are commonly used around various industries owing to their minimal design and operation efficiency. They are widely known for their versatility with viscous and abrasive fluids. AODD pumps are the top choice when it comes to situations where conventional pumps are most likely to fail.

Let's dive into the wide range of applications and benefits of the AODD pumps. This blog will also look at one of the top air operated double diaphragm pump manufacturers, ARO.

Applications of Air Operated Double Diaphragm Pumps

Chemical Processing

When it comes to the chemical processing industry, the abrasive, corrosive and dangerous nature of the fluids being handled calls for specifically designed and manufactured pumps. AODD pumps are required to be capable of functioning in such hazardous conditions effectively. ARO's AODD pumps, like the EXP Series, are ideal for these conditions due to their:

  • Chemical-resistant diaphragm materials like long-lasting PTFE (which provides double the service life over standard PTFE) and Santoprene, that can handle a wide range of pH levels and viscosities.
  • Availability in both metallic and non-metallic constructions for enhanced compatibility with various chemicals.


Water and Wastewater Treatment

AODD pumps are frequently used in the water treatment process in the purification as well as decontamination of sewage sludge. They make great constituents in the batch operations of this sector owing to their distinct advantages, demonstrated by ARO’s pumps due to their:

  • Dry priming and dead-heading capabilities that allow for smooth operation.
  • Efficiency despite fluctuating water levels or interruptions in flow, common in batch operations.


Food and Beverage

The AODD pumps utilized in the food and beverages industry must maintain robust hygiene standards laid out by regulatory authorities. Typically, food-grade and regulatory authority-approved materials are used. ARO AODD pumps address the needs of the F&B industry with:

  • Materials that comply with strict food safety regulations, ensuring product quality and consumer safety. ARO’s sanitary pumps offer 20-30% better flow rates than their contemporaries.
  • Simple designs with minimal moving parts that minimize crevices and allows for thorough cleaning to prevent bacterial growth and contamination.


Pharmaceutical Manufacturing

Akin to the food and beverage industry, pharmaceutical manufacturing calls for precision to help create contamination free, safe to use solutions. AODD pumps are common in almost all processes throughout the production, to handle a variety of materials including pastes, creams, volatile compounds and more. ARO's AODD pumps are particularly suited for pharmaceutical applications because of:

  • Diaphragms that create a pulsating flow that minimizes shear stress on the delicate solutions and pastes commonly used in pharmaceutical manufacturing.
  • Models with smooth surfaces and easy-to-clean components, meeting the stringent hygiene requirements of pharmaceutical production.


Oil and Gas

Processes such as transferring of crude oil, injection of various chemicals as well as disposal of water use AODD pumps in the oil and gas industry. One of the main features of the pumps used in the oil and gas processes is their explosion-proof design which protects them in the event of accidents which are common in the industry.

ARO prioritizes safety in oil and gas applications with explosion-proof AODD pumps. These models in their series are designed and certified to meet strict safety standards. They minimize the risk of ignition in environments with flammable or explosive materials.

Advantages of Air Operated Double Diaphragm Pumps

Universal Fluid Compatibility

AODD pumps excel due to their positive displacement mechanism. This design utilizes an elastomeric diaphragm that expands and contracts within a sealed chamber. This enables AODDs to handle a broad spectrum of fluids, from low-viscosity liquids like water to highly viscous slurries and even corrosive materials. This versatility makes them a valuable asset in diverse industrial applications.


Simplified Maintenance Regimen

AODD pumps boast a remarkably simple design with minimal moving parts. This translates to a streamlined maintenance regimen. The reduced number of components minimizes downtime associated with repairs and replacements, ultimately leading to lower maintenance costs.


Favorable Life-Cycle Cost

The economic benefits of AODD pumps extend beyond the initial investment. Their lower upfront costs, coupled with simplified maintenance requirements, contribute to significant life-cycle cost savings. Additionally, the robust design and inherent efficiency of the positive displacement principle lead to long-term cost advantages.


Self-Priming Capability

AODD pumps possess a distinct advantage: self-priming. This implies they can initiate pumping even with fluctuating fluid levels or entrained air within the line. This eliminates the need for constant manual priming, significantly simplifying operation and reducing reliance on external equipment.


Intrinsically Safe Design for Hazardous Environments

Safety is a paramount concern in many industrial settings. AODD pumps utilize compressed air as the power source, eliminating the need for an electric motor. This inherently safe design eliminates the risk of electrical sparks, making them ideal for flammable or explosive environments. This characteristic ensures compliance with stringent health and safety regulations in such environments.


Shear-Sensitive Material Compatibility

The unique diaphragm design of AODD pumps creates a pulsating flow pattern. This inherent characteristic minimizes the shearing forces experienced by the fluid being transferred. Compared to pumps with rotors or impellers, this gentle pumping action makes AODDs well-suited for delicate or shear-sensitive materials that could be susceptible to damage by more aggressive pumping mechanisms.


Dry-Run Capability

Unlike many other pump types, AODD pumps can operate briefly without liquid (dry run) without incurring damage to internal components. This characteristic allows for temporary flow interruptions during operation without requiring maintenance interventions. This can be crucial for processes where short periods without fluid flow are unavoidable.


ARO Double Diaphragm Pumps

ARO is a widely recognized manufacturer of AODD pumps. Most ARO diaphragm pumps are ATEX certified (CE Ex11 2GD X). ARO double diaphragm pumps are known for their minimal and robust designs that target efficiency, accuracy, and ease of maintenance. ARO's EXP Series is a popular choice, offering high flow rates, a wide range of material and porting configurations, and automation capabilities through integration with the ARO Controller.



AODD or air operated double diaphragm pumps stand tall as a critical solution in the processes that employ administration of fluids in an accurate manner. Their production guarantees their ability to handle abrasive, corrosive and hazardous materials without sustaining much damage.

As we move forward in time, AODD pumps and the technology related to them is likely to evolve and advance. The future of industrial pumping does seem bright with the evolution of AODD technology.