Submersible Pump

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submersible pump

[səb′mər·sə·bəl ′pəmp]
(mechanical engineering)
A pump and its electric motor together in a protective housing which permits the unit to operate under water.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Submersible Pump


a pump, usually of the vertical type, installed in boreholes, mine shafts, or tanks below the level of the liquid being pumped. This arrangement allows a liquid to be raised from great depths, provides for cooling of the pump components, and in some cases enables a liquid with a gas dissolved in it to be raised.

Submersible sucker-rod pumps and submersible rodless pumps are distinguished. A submersible sucker-rod pump is driven by a self-contained motor located above the level of the liquid, with a rod acting as the connection. A rodless submersible pump is housed in a unit that also contains the motor. Pumps of this type are usually driven by electric motors, although hydraulic motors are sometimes used. The motor is located below the level of the liquid and the power is usually supplied through a special electric cable that is suspended in the well.

In Russia, in the early 20th century, A. S. Arutiunov developed the first submersible pump unit, consisting of a multistage centrifugal pump and an electric motor. During the 1930’s, a rodless submersible pump with a hydraulic drive was proposed in the USSR by M. I. Martsishevskii. The following types of submersible pumps are used in industry: sucker-rod piston; rodless centrifugal; single-screw; diaphragm, with electric drive; and piston, mostly with hydraulic drive. Submersible pumps are built with small outside diameters (63–400 mm) and thus can be used in wells with a small cross section. High-power pump units may be tens of meters long, pumping to 1,000 cu m of liquid per hour and with a pressure head to 4,500 m.

Submersible pumps are used in oil production and in supplying water for agriculture and industry. The type most widely used in the USSR is the submersible centrifugal pump with electric drive, used in oil production and in vertical pumping of water. In other countries, submersible pumps of the piston type with hydraulic drive are also used.


Bogdanov, A. A. Pogruzhnye tsentrobezhnye elektronasosy dlia dobychi nefti. Moscow, 1968.
Baldenko, D. F., and M. G. Bidman. Odnovintovye nasosy v SSSR i za rubezhom. Moscow, 1972.
Kazak, A. S., I. I. Rosin, and L. G. Chicherov. Pogruzhnye besshtangovye nasosy dlia dobychi nefti. Moscow, 1973.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

submersible pump

A type of pump designed with an integral motor and liquid-handling section in a watertight casing that can be lowered directly into the liquid to be pumped.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Architecture and Construction. Copyright © 2003 by McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
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Summary: Electric submersible cables are used to provide power from surface power sources to the downhole electrical submersible pumps. These pumps are mainly used in the artificial lift of oil and gas resources, offshore drilling rigs, irrigation, mine dewatering, drinking water supply, sewage treatment plants, industries, fountains, sea water filtration plants, swimming pools, and aquariums.

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