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Clackamas pump maker wins national award

Clackamas-based Cornell Pump Co.’s Cutter Pump was judged to be best of the worldwide entries for the fourth-annual Product Innovation of the Year, judged by Pumps & Systems magazine.

The previous three contests were won by companies in Denmark, Ohio and Germany.

The prize covers products entered in the marketplace between Sept. 1, 2011, and Aug. 31 of this year.

Cornell, which employs 135 people in Clackamas County, won for its innovative cutter pump that addresses an issue plaguing many waste water treatment systems in North America — fouled impellers. The spinning portion of a pump is called an impeller — this component pushes the liquid through the pump, and its rotation creates the pressure that propels liquid down the piping.

In wastewater applications, the impeller is often “fouled” by materials such as diapers, cleaning rags, disposable mops and moist wipes. The amount of material that fouls impellers is increasing, led by the quantity of moist wipes that are marketed to adults as well as babies and are purported to be flushable down the toilet.

Cornell created an innovative cutter design, using a stationary and rotating element to reduce masses of solids to a size that will pass through the pump. Less impeller fouling means a dramatic increase in up-time for the pump; in tests of the cutters, savings of more than $31,000 per pump installed have been seen.




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