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Tumble Blending - Getting the Mix Right in Your Industrial Mixer

Views: 22     Author: Site Editor     Publish Time: 2023-11-02      Origin: Site

Can you mix powders in a blender?

Tumble blenders are ideal when product mixes require gentle handling. Traditional wisdom states that if you need to blend sticky powders or tough, lumpy ingredients, a high-shear blender would suit your needs better.

Achieving the perfect blend is essential when making a high-quality product for the discerning consumer or to meet regulatory controls. To do that, you need the most suitable equipment for the job: a blender that is ideally suited to your recipes, your production line, and your customer's demands. If you've already started the search for an industrial mixer for your premises, you'll have discovered a range of different styles from ribbon blenders and high-shear blenders to tumble blenders. In this blog, we explore the world of tumble blending, what it is, how it works, and the benefits it can bring to your business…

What is Tumble Blending?

A tumble blender is a rotating mixing machine that comes in a variety of styles, including the IBC (Intermediate Bulk Container) Blender, the V-shaped blender, and the 3D powder mixer. this kind of powder mixer is widely considered to be a low-impact mechanism for blending.

Regardless of geometry, the tumble blender usually turns at an operating speed of between 5 to 25 rpm, depending on the ingredients to be blended.

Regardless of the specific shape of the powder mixer chosen, depending on the output of the mixed powder, the machine can choose different volumes from 1L to 30,000L, depending on the output of the ingredients to be mixed.

How does a Tumble Blender Work?

Tumble blenders encourage product to do just what the name of the blender suggests – tumble. Diffusion is therefore the main mechanism for mixing as particles roll, cascade and fall over each exposed surface as the vessel rotates on a horizontal axis. In a V-shaped blender, the batch is continuously being split and recombined across the two sides of the vessel.

To take advantage of this mixing and flow pattern, raw materials are typically loaded into the vessel in layers rather than side-by-side.

As tumble blending is low shear, it’s especially well-suited to mixing dense powders, fragile solids, and abrasive materials such as bakery mixes, cereals, and milk powders. It’s also regularly used when blends contain trace components or when using ingredients that are different in size and density.

Tumble blenders deliver highly accurate and repeatable mixing of recipes which therefore suits any applications using regulatory standards.

Aimed at mixing different materials from different batches and preventing cross-contamination. Our IBC bin mixer can solve this problem very well. For example: a 1000L IBC mixer can be equipped with a 100-1000L hopper and used to mix different weights and types of powders.

Tumble Blender Video

Why Choose a Tumble Blender?

Tumble blenders are ideal when product mixes require gentle handling. Traditional wisdom states that if you need to blend sticky powders or tough, lumpy ingredients, a high-shear blender would suit your needs better. But some of today’s manufacturers of tumble blenders have added this high shear element in the form of Intensifiers which are fitted to the blender to apply force to the material and break agglomerates. This has expanded the range of tumble blending to accommodate recipes that have a higher fat content – indeed the bakery industry is able to use this technology for single-stage mixing.

Tumble blenders are easy to control, some offering variable frequency drives to allow a soft, slow start when they’re fully loaded. The rpm rate can also be adjusted so that the cascading motion of the product can be carefully controlled. You can even program them to stop automatically after a specific number of revolutions.

There’s Tumble Blending and There’s Hywell Tumble Blending

The greatest success story for tumble blending lies with the IBC blender.  It offers full manufacturing flexibility to its customers. Because the IBC itself becomes the blending vessel there is no product contact with the blender so recipe changeovers can be instantaneous. Simply load on the next IBC without worrying about cleaning and cross-contamination. Ingredients can be prepared within the IBC off-line, moved to the industrial mixer, and blended in-bin before being transported, within the same IBC, to the packing line. This makes for the leanest and most efficient production process available.

View our short film to see how a Hywell system compares with a traditional fixed-line mixer system. Both are producing the same recipes and batch sizes but the time savings are obvious.

With the Hywell IBC blender, we see our customers being able to mix 3-4 batches per hour without any downtime in the mixing process. A dramatic uplift from the 1 batch an hour they were making with their traditional ribbon blender.

The small footprint that the Matcon IBC Blender occupies has the additional benefit of saving building space, which is of particular note if clean rooms need to be created to house the industrial mixer. In addition, a single IBC blender can accommodate the full range of Hywell IBCs so there is no need to purchase additional mixers to match different batch sizes. A saving on both the blender cost and space costs too.

You can fully assess whether a tumble blender is right for you by requesting a blending trial from Hywell at one of their testing plants. You can use your own raw ingredients to closely simulate your production process.

We are further enhancing this service by offering the latest in sampling technology using NIR (near-infrared spectroscopy), which identifies the point at which a batch reaches homogeneity.  By using NIR we are able to give results in real-time and remove the use of invasive sampling. This data can be used back in your factory to prevent over-mixing and keep blend times to a minimum.

Bin Tumbler Powder Mixers Advantages

Hywell machinery bin tumbler mixers had the following advantages over conventional solutions.

1. Excellent homogeneity of the bin tumbler powder mixer - all the product is collectively in flow all the time

2. Protecting particle integrity of the bin tumbler mixer - gravity enabling minimal, equal forces

3. Short mixing times of the bin tumbler mixers - due to lack of friction, no temperature rises or even topical hot spots

4. Quick and easy to clean the bin tumbler mixer - to provide good hygienic security

5. Low energy consumption of the bin tumbler powder mixers

6. Simple operation ensures safe and reliable production

7. It is provided with the multiple safety interlocking mechanisms

8. IBC blending machine intelligent PLC control and graphical HMI

9. It is provided with a built-in automatic fault self-diagnosis system

10. Flexible to transfer the materials with a trolley IBC bin

11. Mixing time and rotating speed adjustable through the touch screen

12. IBC bin blender auto position, auto record printing, failure report, and alarm

13. Interchangeable IBC container suitable for various kinds of materials

14. Automatically finish all actions such as clamping, lifting, mixing, etc

15. The whole machine's novel design, compact structure, good appearance, and evenness of mixing reach 99%.

16. Highly polished inner and outer surfaces of the barrel, no deadcomer, easy to discharge materials, easy to clear, no cross-contamination. Confining the requirement of GMP.

Applications of Powder Tumble Blending

So, where will use the bin blender? What are some of the things that a bin blending system can do?

To give you a better understanding, here are the most common industrial applications of bin blenders:

Blending different materials

The bin blender working principle ensures that it blends different materials to the utmost levels.

It performs blending roles in different industries including food, cosmetics, and pharmaceutical among others.

Prevent contamination

It thoroughly mixes different content until you achieve a perfect mixture.

Normally, a blending process can result in the contamination of different materials.

The good news is bin blending can prevent contamination. because different batches or different materials use separated blending containers.

Consult Your Hywell Machinery Expert

We help you avoid the pitfalls to deliver the quality and value your fo need, on-time and on-budget.


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