Afridev Hand Pump
UNICEF, UNDP, World Bank, and Malawi Government
A conventional lever hand pump to collect water from boreholes.
The Afridev Hand Pump is a conventional lever action handpump. It is designed for heavy-duty use, serving communities of up to 300 persons.
This product is currently distributed in many countries in Africa and across several countries in Asia including Laos, Vietnam, and Cambodia. Pakistan and Afghanistan have started to adopt the design with different names including Indus, Kabul and Pamir Pump.
SK Industries, among other local manufacturers varying by region. In Pakistan and Afghanistan, derivatives of the Afridev Pump have been developed and distributed using different names including Pamir Pump.
Goal 6: Clean water and sanitation
Communities that do not have access to a reliable water source.
All steel parts can be locally manufactured. The specifications of each individual part from SKAT with engineering drawings are available online in the Afridev Handpump Specification document. Underground components must be manufactured by local companies who manufacture PVC-U pipes and have engineering processing knowledge. Pumps can be mass manufactured.
Individuals can purchase pumps from local manufacturers directly.
100,000+ since the 1980s Correspondence with designer
Description of the pump type
Power required, measured in watts
Manufacturer-specified discharge rate, measured at a specific head
Maximum depth of water the pump can pull
Piston nominal diameter, measured in centimeters
The Afridev is a conventional lever action hand pump which is corrosion resistant and easy to install. Its configuration includes an:
- ‘Open top’ cylinder: the piston can be removed from the cylinder without dismantling the rising main)
- Retractable foot valve
- Pump head, handle and pump stand: galvanized steel
- Pump rods: stainless steel or FRP rods (fibre glass reinforced plastic)
- Plunger and foot valve: brass or plastic
- Rising main of PVC-U pipe (Ø 63 mm)
- Cylinder of PVC-U pipe with brass liner (Ø 50 mm)
Suitable conditions for use of hand pump:
- Type of well: borehole or dug well.
- Depths to be used: 10-45 m
- Cylinder diameter: 50 mm
The diagram identifies the key components of the Afridev Hand Pump.
Its features and functions are further outlined in the following diagram:
The Afridev Pump has high potential for community-based maintenance. Rural Water Sanitation Network provides technical support in an extensive manual which outlines guidelines for weekly, monthly, and yearly checks of the pump.
Most components can be locally manufactured. The neoprene rings used as piston seals may not be locally available as they are much more difficult to manufacture.
With regular maintenance of parts, the entire pump can last about 15 years. Neoprene rings used as piston seals wear out in about 1 year. The pump requires the rings, so unless they can be manufactured locally, the pump becomes unusable. According to RWSN, the handpump is guaranteed for 12 months from the date of installation, or 18 months from the date of supply, whichever is earlier.
The Afridev Pump is a public domain pump defined by RWSN specifications noted in the vetted performance section.
Technical data published by Rural Water Sanitation Network relating to performance measurements are as follows:
- Maximum Stroke: 225 mm
- Approximate discharge (75 watt input): 1.4 m³/hr (10 m head), 1.1 m³/hr (15 m head), 0.9 m³/hr (20 m head), 0.7 m³/hr (30 m head)
- Pumping lift: 10 – 45 m
- Population served per unit: ~ 300 people
- Households per unit: Up to 50
No known hazards
The pump requires a concrete slab to be constructed underneath the pump to reduce the amount of loose, contaminated water that would otherwise flow through the soil and down into the water supply.
Mann, E., 2003, Sustainable water supply for a remote rural community in Mozambique, Greener Management International, 42, pp. 58-66.
Chavula, G., Chilima, G., Mulwafu, W., Nkhoma, B., 2015, Community based management approach in the management of water resources by different organizations in the Lake Chilwa basin, Malawi, University of Malawi – The Polytechnic
Colin, J.,1999, VLOM for rural water supply: lessons from experience, Water and Environmental Health at London and Loughborough, 162
Stewart, E., 2003, How to select the proper human-powered pump for potable water, Michigan Technological University
Every country in sub-Saharan Africa has experienced handpump standardisation, either formally or informally. Below is a list of known product compliance with regulations:
- Regulation: Ghana, Mali, Niger, Nigeria
- Endorsement: Angola, Benin, Malawi, Mozambique, South Sudan
The product is also compliance with regulations in Afghanistan and Pakistan for Afridev variants. Correspondence with designer
An early version of the Afridev was tested during the 1980s World Bank/UNDP handpump project in both the lab and the field. Correspondence with designer
A number of projects have utilised the Afridev Hand Pump.
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