Hygienic Pumps New Hygienic Pumps for the Pharmaceutical, Food and Beverage Industry

Author Dr. Jörg Kempf

What is going on at hygienic pump specialists Hilge, now present in the market as GEA Hilge after the acquisition by the GEA Group? Recently, the company gave the trade press a glimpse into its goals and objectives and also introduced a new hygienic pump.

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Versatile and adaptable: The new hygienic pumps GEA Hilge Hygia stand out thanks to a high degree of flexibility.
Versatile and adaptable: The new hygienic pumps GEA Hilge Hygia stand out thanks to a high degree of flexibility.
(Source: GEA Hilge; © Vera Kuttelvaserova/Fotolia.com; [M]-GötzelHorn)

It’s been around a year and a half that the name on the door signs in Bodenheim/Germany’s Hilgestraße has changed: Visitors are now greeted by the GEA logo where Grundfos once flaunted. In the time immediately after the acquisition, everything seemed to be relatively quiet at the hygienic pump specialists. Yet, in fact everyone was sedulously busy behind closed doors establishing new objectives under the GEA roof. These doors have been opened at the beginning of this year.

In a press conference, Bastian Tolle, who, as Head of Product Group Management for Flow Components at GEA, is responsible for the segments of hygienic and aseptic valves, cleaning technology and pump technology, specified the line of approach: With Hilge now under the GEA Group umbrella, the focus will shift back to pharmaceuticals and food sectors, away from the building- and water technology focus that dominated under the aegis of Grundfos.


The objective of GEA is to be the number 1 in the area of hygienic pumps. Certainly a ambitious goal, says Tolle, but now the first step is to become one of the top three suppliers as soon as possible. The conditions are favorable: Hilge and GEA complement each other perfectly. Whereas GEA, as a leading provider of process technology, possesses a wide portfolio of hygienic components, however, only a limited pump portfolio (Tuchenhagen) and a limited, specialised pumps applications know-how, Hilge brings along a wide range of pumps, a highly specialised pumps applications expertise as well as wide variety and flexibility.

“GEA was not known as a pump supplier in the market”, says Tolle. But that has fundamentally changed now — and the company will be well-prepared for the future like that.

The Correct Solution for Each Application

A future for which the company has prepared well in the previous year. In fact — to respond better to process as well as user requirements — GEA has combined the hygienic pumps offer from Tuchenhagen and Hilge into two product groups. The motto is: To be able to offer the correct solution for each application.

  • The Varipump series was optimised mainly for demanding applications in biotechnology, pharmaceutical industry and the dairy industry and offers high flexibility. The pumps are suitable for extreme operating points (e.g. high system pressures, high medium temperatures, liquids containing solids) and are optimised individually. They stand out thanks to high surface finish, the lack of cast parts and high-value materials.
  • The hygienic pumps of the Smartpump series on the other hand are designed for frequently used operating points in normal use conditions and thus highly standardised, easy to configure, cost-effective and deliverable in the short term.

The latest Varipump representative — which resulted directly from a revision of the pump lines — is the single-stage, normal-priming centrifugal pump GEA Hilge Hygia, which combines the former series Euro Hygia and F&B Hygia and their advantages. Its speciality are the highest requirements of hygiene and flexibility.

The pump series is offered in two different sizes and stands out by its high surface finish. Furthermore, it is also available in completely non-porous material — without cast parts in the product contact area. With the new motor connection setup — which uses a standard motor instead of a Bloc unit — the pump can be equipped in modular principle with the most varied motors, thus fulfilling international standards and specifications. In addition to DIN-, ASME- and ISO-connections, a variety of special connections can be delivered. Different impeller geometries (half-open, closed, vortex) ensure that the pump, depending upon the application, always runs in the optimal operating point.

First of all, the new, robust stainless steel bonnet stands out, which was taken over form the GEA Hilge TP Kit and protects the motor from spray water and mechanical stress. Thanks to a comprehensive range of mechanical seals, the widest variety of pumping media and applications can be operated. In this, the single-acting, internal mechanical seals are arranged optimally in the pump room (that is, in the pumping medium), which causes good cleaning as well as effective cooling and lubrication. Other optimal features are the stable quench seal and the drain valve by GEA Tuchenhagen. Naturally, the high requirements of EHEDG, FDA and QHD are fulfilled. A complete documentation and current certificates provide the necessary legal certainty.