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Rand-Air is ‘pumping’ in the agricultural sector!

As the established leader in the local portable air compressor and generator rental market, Rand-Air maintains an excellent reputation, based on its ethos of exceeding customers’ expectations and through the regular training and development of its people.

Henry Fourie, Business Development Manager at Rand-Air, explains that when it comes to rentals, the company provides TUV-certified oil-free, diesel or electric air solutions; as well as power and lighting solutions, and more recently, pumps.

“Although we have full access to the entire equipment range of our international parent company Atlas Copco, as part of Atlas Copco Power Technique in the Speciality Rental Division, our focus is on serving specific vertical target and also niche market sectors,” Fourie says.

Rand-Air therefore hires to specialist contractors within the oil and gas, mining and manufacturing industries; as well as the food and beverage, and some construction projects.

“We are very excited to announce a new pump range from Atlas Copco Power Technique, which is very well suited for use in the agricultural sector,” Fourie advises.

“There are two types of pumps in the new range: the Weda electrical submersible pump, which features low to medium heads. The other type of pump is the PAS/VAR diesel-driven variety,” he explains.

“The impellers on the pumps are coated and highly durable, making them able to withstand corrosive materials, to a point. They also offer good high and low flows, with high heads which enable easy evacuation of material up an incline. This makes them very appropriate for use in agricultural and chemical applications.”

Fourie adds that Rand-Air’s customers will most likely require pumps ranging from 20 kW to 75 kW; and that multi-stage pumps can also be provided.

“These diesel-driven pumps are ideal for the agricultural and construction sectors, in areas where power is not available if, for example, there is a requirement to pump water into sludge or storage dams. These hard-wearing, robust pumps can be taken to site, off-loaded with a crane truck and the customer can start pumping immediately.”

With excellent solids handling, the pumps can be used in a variety of applications. “In the past, pumps would typically break down and need to be replaced or repaired, meaning that there was downtime in agricultural operations.

Fourie points out that, particularly in this time of the Covid-19 pandemic-induced national lockdown and concerns around food security, any downtime can have disastrous implications for agricultural production.

“If, for example, a farmer cannot get water to irrigate a field, this could potentially impact his crop yield very negatively.

“Our new range of pumps is an excellent value-add to the agricultural sector, and we can supply the equipment on-demand, at any time,” Fourie points out, emphasising that the benefits of easy access to these products is immense, regardless of the size of the farm.

“In the scenario where a pump has gone in for repairs, we can hire out a durable temporary replacement pump that can run 24/7, ensuring that crops are not impacted or lost. Designed for continuous operation, these robust pumps can run uninterrupted as long as there is fuel in the system,” he says.

In conjunction with Atlas Copco’s Power Technique business division, Rand-Air will be hiring the new range of pumps locally.

Also of relevance to the agricultural sector is Rand-Air’s diesel generator range, available from 20 KVA up to 1.1 MVA for a single unit; and up to 4 MVA when in parallel, according to Fourie.

He points out that in both the wine and citrus industries during harvest, packing houses require uninterrupted, additional power to ensure smooth production.

“They are limited by the amount of grid-based power available, and if they need to expand their supply to run more production or packing lines, we can add on a generator to their existing mains supply to meet their demand.”

He adds that the same applies to the refrigeration facilities: “With cold storage units, if there is a power outage, the produce will deteriorate. We can literally plug in a generator and save a consignment, ensuring the safety of the produce. This is therefore an excellent contingency option for the agricultural sector,” he says.

“Notwithstanding the recent national lockdown, we have been busy. Given our service excellence and innovative technology – and additions such as the pumps we now offer – Rand-Air is strategically well-positioned to serve our customers as the market demand increases – including in the agricultural sector.”

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