Proximity Designs Red Rhino Pump
The Red Rhino Water Pump is a mobile, foot-operated pump that allows the user to apply a stepping motion, similar to an elliptical, to draw up water from a well.
The Red Rhino Water Pump is a mobile, suction, foot-operated pump that allows the user to apply a stepping motion, similar to an elliptical, to draw up water from a well. It is a relatively small treadle pump with a suction depth of 7 m. Proximity Designs designed the pump in Myanmar for local farmers as part of its Yetagon range of farm technology products.
As of September 2020, this product is discontinued.Interview with representative
44,455 red rhino pumps have been sold since 2004.
Description of the pump type
Land size irrigation capacity, measured in acres
The amount of water discharged, measured in liters per minute
Maximum length of pipe from pump to the raised tank, measured in meters
The amount of pressure required to pump water, measured in MPa
The maximum length of pipe from the water source, measured in meters
Type of energy used to power the pump
Maximum power requirement, measured in watts
Maximum motor current, measured in amperes
Power required to run the pump, measured in voltage
- A no-fuss, long-lasting, totally mobile foot-powered water pump.
- A treadle pump operator stands on two metal or wooden treadles and steps using an action similar to a step exercise-machine.
- The treadles drive a pump connected to a tube well, which is a length of robust plastic pipe sunk into the ground until it reaches the water table.
- The pump has a maximum depth of about 7.5 metres and deliver up to 5 m3 per hour.
Installation and maintenance can be done by the user. Promoters, agents and distributors get annual training on installation and maintenance and are expected to train users at the time of purchase. Products are designed so that users can install and maintain them without specialised tools, although an agent can help them for a small charge.
Available with purchase, the initial price of the pump includes spare rubber washers and valves, which need regular replacement.
The pumps have a 1 year warranty, but are said to last for at least 4 years.
No third-party testing has been performed, however one farmer reported as part of the manufacturer’s monitoring a 6 times increase in plant production in one year, tripling her income.
Proximity Designs carries out rigorous testing on their prototypes in their lab and in the field while working hand in hand with Myanmar farmers for feedback and iteration.
No specified safety precautions.
Through Proximity Finance they provide growers with ongoing access to credit for irrigation and solar products. Farmers can pay cash or take out a short-term loan from Proximity, which adds about 10% to the total cost. The loan can be just for the cost of the irrigation products, or can include cash to buy agricultural inputs like seeds and fertilizer.
Hawkins, J., 2014, Honouring innovation. Renewable Energy Focus, 15(3), pp. 40-43.
Keller, J., Keller, A.A. and Rye, J.N., 2011. Small-plot Irrigation Products, Design, and Dissemination. Technical Presentation: 2011 Louisville, Kentucky, August 7-10, 2011, American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, p. 1.
Richards, L.J., 2012, Simple designs remove drudgery. Appropriate Technology, 39(2), p. 53.
Rowell, B., Soe, M.L. and Khine, T.T., 2013, Low pressure drip irrigation for commercial vegetables in Myanmar. SEAVEG 2012 High Value Vegetables in Southeast Asia: Production, Supply and Demand, p. 135.
Rowell, B. and Soe, M.L., 2015, Design, introduction, and extension of low-pressure drip irrigation in Myanmar. HortTechnology, 25(4), pp. 422-436.
Shah, T., Alam, M., Dinesh, M., Nagar, R.K. and Mahendra, S., 2000, Pedaling out of poverty: social impact of a manual irrigation technology in South Asia. Colombo, Sri Lanka: International water management institute, Research report No. 45.
Proximity Designs claim that their prototypes undergo rigorous testing that simulates thousands of hours of use in rugged terrain. They are then sent to Myanmar farmers for further evaluation.
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