Continuous, recycle and batch emulsification kinetics using a high-shear mixer
Authors: Sergio Carrillo De Hert, Thomas L. Rodgers
Journal: Chemical Engineering Science
Publication Date: 13 April, 2017
Department of: Chemical Engineering and Analytical Science
The explicit link between different rotor-stator mixer configurations
Everyday products we need, such as pharmaceuticals, personal care products, and foods, are carefully formulated to have the desired properties and performance. Often this requires mixing immiscible liquids, such as oils and water, to obtain an emulsion. Emulsions are macroscopically homogeneous phases, but consist of dispersed droplets at a microscopic level. Rotor-stator mixers are widely used to emulsify immiscible liquids, and methods to reliably predict their performance are key to improve productivity, reduce waste, and overall increase the sustainability of the processes.
For production these rotor-stator mixers are used in three typical arrangements; a continuous inline design, a recycled inline design, or a batch vessel design. Researchers at The University of Manchester have developed a model that allows the evolution of the droplets production and their size with time to be predicted. This research has proven, for the first time, the explicit link between the three typical arrangements, which allows prediction of the product’s properties based on the conditions used to produce it. Furthermore, this analysis allows direct conversion of emulsion production from a batch to a continuous system, allowing industry to take advantage of more efficient production methods.
- Rotor-stator mixers are single-shaft mixers with an impeller rotating (rotor) in close proximity to a stationary housing (stator).