GIW is proud to feature Robert Visintainer – VP of Engineering, Research & Development for GIW Industries. Mr. Visintainer is an integral part of our slurry pump development team. In this interview, he shares how the GIW Hydraulics Lab is improving the slurry pump industry and honoring our commitment to sustainability.
How does the GIW Hydraulics Lab benefit our global customers as they seek ways to improve all areas of their slurry transport?
In serving our global customers, the GIW Hydraulics Lab has always focused on developing best-in-class slurry pumps and a better understanding of how the slurries behave in our customers’ systems. These are complementary because the two work together to determine how the system operates, how efficient it is, and how well it achieves the end it’s been designed for.
How does GIW’s R&D help build customer relationships and establish the company as a long-term pump provider and service partner?
GIW doesn’t just send our products out into the world and hope for the best. We work with our customers to continually improve those products and improve the operation of their systems. The relationship is key to the development, and the development builds the relationship. This has always been the GIW way.
How do product development and innovation contribute to GIW’s commitment to sustainability?
The extraction of metals and mining, in general, is really key to sustainability. GIW supports sustainability in the industries we serve by improving the efficiency of our products. For example, obtaining metals like copper is essential to moving us to an electric economy. More importantly, by helping our customers better understand how to use our products to improve the efficiency of their systems, we can help them achieve their goals for their sustainability as part of our sustainability mission.
What does the GIW Hydraulics Lab do to make GIW a better slurry pump company?
At the end of the day, the primary purpose of a slurry pump is to transport slurry, so understanding how slurries behave is key to developing quality designs. Imagine that you want to design a race car. You want to have a test track to test your designs before you take it to the racetrack. Otherwise, you will take it to the race and hope for the best. At GIW, when we send our pumps out into the field, they’ve been proven in the test track of the GIW Hydraulics Lab.
What makes GIW’s Hydraulics Lab unique?
Our most important resource, and our greatest strength, is our people and the know-how they’ve developed over many years of testing slurry pumps and pumping slurries. We’ve pumped just about every slurry that our customers transport over the last 45 years, and I can tell you from experience, anyone can put a slurry into a pipeline and pump it around and maybe collect some data.
But to do it in a way that maintains the integrity of the slurry, collect some valuable data along the way, and then know what to do with it afterward, that is a combination of skill that can be done very well or very poorly. In the GIW Hydraulics Lab, it’s done very well.
About Robert Visintainer
Robert Visintainer, P.E., Vice President of Engineering, Research & Development for GIW Industries, has worked in the design, testing, sales, and manufacturing of centrifugal pumps since 1981 — with a particular focus on slurry wear prediction methods and all aspects of slurry pump hydraulic and mechanical design. A graduate of the Georgia Institute of Technology, he holds degrees in Physics and Mechanical Engineering.
Mr. Visintainer was recently named the 2021 recipient of the Henry R. Worthington Medal by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME). The award recognizes his achievements in the field of pump machinery, systems, and concepts.
Mr. Visintainer has contributed to many developments and innovations in slurry pump design and the modeling of concentrated solid-liquid flows. His contributions include designs for industry-leading two-phase computational fluid dynamic (CFD) models for pump wear prediction, experimental methods for measuring solid-liquid flows within pumps and pipelines, models for predicting their performance, wear mechanism research for materials development, and centrifugal pump theory for viscous slurries and the handling of solid-liquid-gas mixtures. He has contributed to hundreds of pump designs installed worldwide in the mining and dredging industries.