Rotodynamic Definition

What is a Rotodynamic Pump?

A rotodynamic pump is a pump that uses the rotation of an impeller or propeller to impart velocity to a liquid.

Pumps that use rotation to move a liquid are commonly referred to as centrifugal pumps. However, in some cases, the use of the term centrifugal to describe these pumps is inaccurate. In particular, pumps that use mixed and axial-flow impeller designs with a very high specific speed do not produce a flow pattern that fits the centrifugal definition (“out from the center”).

The term rotodynamic is an inclusive term that covers true centrifugal pumps as well as pumps that use rotation to create energy that do not meet the definition of a centrifugal pump. The term dates back at least to 1994 and has experienced a resurgence in popularity after its adoption by the Hydraulic Institute.

In common usage, the term centrifugal is still often used to refer to all types of pumps that use rotation to impart energy to a liquid, but the term rotodynamic is a more technically-correct term used within the water pump engineering community.