Powder and solids blenders produce a uniform mixture of dry or powdery materials. They are designed for industrial and laboratory environments, and provide either batch or continuous blending. Industrial blenders are durable, heavy-duty devices designed for production runs. Laboratory blenders are used to mix, emulsify, homogenize, disintegrate and dissolve samples. With both types of powder and solids blenders, mode of operation is an important specification to consider. Batch blenders use a simple blending method. The blender is filled, the medium is mixed, and the contents are emptied for downstream processing. With continuous-feed blenders, the medium is added continuously, and mixed fluid is continuously removed. Most continuous blenders can run for long periods of time between shutdowns.
Powder and solids blenders are available in a variety of designs. Conical blenders or screw blenders use a rotating screw that progresses around the periphery of a conical hopper. Fluidized-bed blenders feature higher applied-horsepower, faster rotational speeds, and stronger vessel construction. Paddle blenders use a horizontal rotating shaft (or shafts) with fixed arms and attached paddle-shaped feet. Planetary blenders have two blending blades that rotate around individual shafts. Propeller blenders and impeller blenders use vertical blades attached to a horizontal disc. Ribbon blenders use a counter-transport mechanism with an outside right-hand ribbon and an inside left-hand ribbon, each of which is connected to the same horizontal shaft. Single-rotor blenders and twin-rotor blenders are also commonly available. Static blenders and motionless blenders are fins, obstructions, or channels mounted in pipes. Turbine blenders or plow blenders have a circular trough with housing in the center. Ultrasonic blenders and vibrational blenders apply ultrasonic waves to a mixed medium to produce a steep gradient of acoustical pressure. Powder and solids blenders also use agitators, double-cone tumblers, twin-shell tumblers, and horizontal drums.
Product specifications for powder and solids blenders include mounting style, blender location, operating capacity, mix rate, motor speed, applications, user interface, and optional features. Some powder and solids blenders are handheld or portable. Others are stand-mounted or floor-mounted, or designed for benchtop or overhead use. In-line, top-entry, side-entry, and bottom-entry are common choices for blender location. Capacity, feed rate, motor speed, motor power, and blending speed are important performance specifications to consider. In terms of applications, powder and solids blenders can be used to process adhesives, chemicals, construction materials, cosmetics, food and beverages, minerals, paints and coatings, paper and pulp, plastic, pharmaceutical and sanitary products, as well as water and wastewater. The user interface may consist of an analog or digital front panel and display. Optional features for powder and solids blenders include magnetic drives, linings or coatings, timers, programmable controls, disposable or interchangeable rotors, and explosion-proof designs. Extruder feeding, coating, drying, milling, and granulating represent additional capabilities.
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Industrial mixers use a shaft, screw, blades, ribbons, impellers or propellers to mix industrial materials such as adhesives, chemicals, construction materials, minerals, coatings and paints.
Laboratory homogenizers are high-speed, high-shear mixers that reduce samples to uniformed-sized molecules through maceration, cutting, and blending. They are used to process liquids, slurries, or granular substances.
Laboratory mixers are used to mix, emulsify, homogenize, disintegrate and dissolve samples.
Static or motionless mixers are fins, obstructions, or channels mounted in pipes, designed to promote mixing as fluid flows through the mixer.