# SUBJECT : Calculating net positive suction head (NPSH) in non-metric units 11-12.

The definition of NPSHA is simple: Static head + surface pressure head - the vapor pressure of your product - the friction losses in the piping, valves and fittings. But to really understand it, you first have to understand a couple of other concepts:

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Cavitation is what net positive suction head (NPSH) is all about, so you need to know a little about cavitation. Vapor Pressure is another term we will be using. The product's vapor pressure varies with the fluid's temperature. Specific gravity play an important part in all calculations involving liquid. You have to be familiar with the term. You have to be able to read a pump curve to learn the N.P.S.H. required for your pump. You need to understand how the liquid's velocity affects its pressure or head. It is important to understand why we use the term Head instead of Pressure when we make our calculations. Head loss is an awkward term, but you will need to understand it. o You will have to be able to calculate the head loss through piping, valves and fittings. You must know the difference between gage pressure and absolute pressure. Vacuum is often a part of the calculations, so you are going to have to be familiar with the terms we use to describe vacuum.

Lets look at each of these concepts in a little more detail :

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To calculate the net positive suction head (NPSH) of your pump and determine if you are going to have a cavitation problem, you will need access to several additional pieces of information:

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