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There are a number of different types of centrifugal pumps. For the most part, the type of pump selected will be based on the location of the water supply and personal preference.
The most common type of centrifugal pump, used in fire protection, is known as a "horizontal split case". This is because the casing of the pump is split along the horizontal axis of the pump, and the pump shaft is mounted horizontally between the top and bottom halves of the casing. NFPA 20 requires that these pumps have a positive suction, although they can take suction under a slight lift.
Other centrifugal pumps are end-suction or in-line. These pumps, as well as the horizontal split case pump, anticipate that the supply to the pump is capable of keeping the pump casing full of water at all times.
© Hughes Associates,Inc. 2012