Evaluating the Effectiveness of Lancaster Products K-Series High Shear Counter-Current Mixers in Ceramic Processing
In typical ceramic processing applications, mixing / milling is performed using processes such as ball milling, which is a lengthy and energy-intensive process, often requiring processing times as long as 12 – 24 hours.
Could you achieve similar mixing in far less time?
A Simple Study
- Mix the components of a solid state reaction system and evaluate phase composition, particle size, and homogeneity (not shown here) of the heat treated powders (calcium carbonate and titanium dioxide.)
- Compare ball milling at set increments (3,6,12, and 24 hours) with powder sampled from the K-series mixer at shorter times (30 min. or less.)
Comparable mix quality and reduction in particle size in 10 to 20 minutes of mixing in a high shear, counter-current mixer yielded similar results as 3 to 6 hours of ball milling time.
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This is the third video in our lab and testing series. The Lancaster Products Lab is equipped with a production-sized K4 mixer to test and optimize mix recipes at full scale. In this video, we are testing a clay type of material for pelletization.
The K4 mixer introduces a third tool, the low-speed plow, which, along with the rotating pan, transports material to the high-speed rotor. You can see how the high shear counter-current movement creates a rolling action which agglomerates the materials into pellets. The K4 mixer has a bottom discharge; the plow allows for the rapid and complete evacuation of the mixing cavity. After the mixer is fully evacuated, the bottom discharge closes, and reseals ready for the next batch.
This is the second video in our lab and testing series. The Lancaster Products lab is equipped with a small production-sized K3 mixer to test and optimize mix recipes at a prototyping scale. In this video, we are testing a clay type of material for pelletization.
Looking inside of the mixing cavity, you see the counter-current mixing action. The pan rotates clockwise, and the high shear mixing tool spins counterclockwise. The mixing pan actively transports material to the primary mixing tool. Slowing the action down gives us a good view of how the Lancaster mixing action creates a tumbling that promotes agglomeration by rolling the particles much the same way as a snowball growing larger by rolling down a hill.