High Shear Mixer: The Comprehensive FAQ Guide in 2023
If you are here, that means you are looking for High shear mixer to make all your dreams come true: a machine that is effective, efficient, versatile, or should I say: an all-rounder! No need to go anywhere else, as this buying guide will take you in the world of High Shear Mixer to understand each and everything regarding these machines.
Not only the general things like benefits, drawbacks, components or types, but you will also learn the quality factors including all the specs and features required to help maintain, troubleshoot, and utilize it in the best way possible.
Let’s Just Begin.
1.What Is A High Shear Mixer?
Aipak High Shear Mixer
Though you may have an idea of what a High Shear Mixer is, it is good to understand what exactly this equipment is.
As the name suggests, it mixes things, but what makes it different from its counterparts is the way it is built, as well as the way it works.
But to understand this better, one should go deeper to the origin, that is, a simple High shear mixer.
Earlier High shear mixers were known in industries to perform the basics of what a modern High shear mixer can do today.
They take in materials, or substances in either solid, liquid, or gas form to engage in several processes known as blending, emulsification, homogenizing, or simply mixing.
Though blending and mixing are almost the same, the latter one involves more pressure and faster process.
Emulsifying two mixtures, particularly two un-mixable liquids, is a process to combine them into one suspension.
One example of this would be the mixing of oil and water. Though both the substances are non-dissolving in each other when put together, High shear mixer can break down oil into small droplets to suspend them into the water, thus making them a homogeneous mixture.
Another important process that these mixers are capable of is Dispersion which breaks down solids into small particles to distribute them uniformly in another substance.
It is done by separating solid particles from each other first, and then scattering them in other substance to give the mixture a final form.
Thus, High Shear Mixers are machines that excel in mixing, blending, emulsifying, and dispersing substances.
They are better than their traditional forms because they can cover more in less time, with quality and performance increased too.
Other names for them are rotor-stator style mixer, high shear reactor, high-speed mixer and high shear homogenizer.
It is significant to note that traditional mixers lacked in the proper mixing of substances, and High Shear Mixers are preferred in the processing industry because along with the finest fusion of materials, they also offer their users clean manufacturing, something which was absent in their ancient counterparts for a long time.
2.What Are the Benefits of High Shear Mixer in Pharmaceutical Business?
Capsules-Photo Credit: Vector
The right equipment is the one that is filled with more profit and less loss, simply stated, provides more value.
And an appealing name in this regard is High Shear Reactors which are packed with all the benefits you would look in factory mixers.
Though all the industries gain a great deal of value with these machines, pharmaceutical enterprises, in particular, has enormously flourished under their shade.
Since the pharmacies are responsible for the production of drugs to be used as medications, the need for a prime and first-rate blender was fruitfully fulfilled by these reactors.
There is a long list of advantages a pharmaceutical industry gets with High-Speed Mixers including the successful formulation of antibiotics and other medications as well as healthy ophthalmic preparations.
Following are some of the benefits of High Shear Mixer in pharmaceutical business:
1. Uniform distribution of granules
A good High-Speed Homogenizer offers quality above everything.
When traditional mixers were incapable of proper mixing of different substances, modern shear mixers excel in homogenisation, even when the particles to be mixed are hard and rough.
The pharmaceutical industries benefit well from this fine granulation as even the stickiest products can be suspended together without an inconsistent fusion.
This helps in achieving premium tableting properties with a fine dispersion of particles.
2. Stable, and secure inhalants and particles
Other than excellent homogenizations of granules, reactors are also ideal for keeping all the mixing processes risk-free and secure.
Earlier mixers, though used to provide a good deal of suspension, lacked in the safety of their users as harmful chemicals and injurious gases can easily damage human’s skin and even the body.
Thus, different sections of pharmaceutical businesses evolved a lot with the safe manufacturing of different tablets and drugs.
3. More output with less binder solution
Now, this is the point you should focus on.
Often the rule of thumb is: the more you add, the more you get. But this theory has been failed by effective modern rotor-stator style mixers as they require less binder solution for the production of a new substance.
A binder is anything that acts as an agent between two materials to form a final product, either mechanically or chemically.
When it comes to pharmacy, this saves not only the over-use of binder ingredient but also offers more output for desired granule formation.
4. Less time for granulation
The multifunctioning of advanced mixers doesn’t confine itself to only the previous point, rather it also helps achieve the finest homogenization in as minimum time as possible.
Thus, with the latest quality reactors, you will get excellent granulation in less time than their counterparts along with double protection, less requirement, and more uniform, a stable outcome!
The less-time consuming is one feature of modern-day reactors which completely cancelled out traditional turbines and propellers.
5. Less-friability with deeper compression
Moisture Free Powder- Photo Credit: PharmaWorld
Pharmaceutical industries, unlike other businesses, are considered to more be vulnerable to failures because the drugs and medications tend to cure patients.
Thus, any loss in them will result in loss of the human race due to contagious illnesses and viruses.
Though this demands pharmaceutical sectors to be more careful in the manufacturing of drugs, at times, certain factors may result in devastating production of tablets such as friability.
In medical terms, friability refers to a tablet’s strength, especially the uncoated ones, to disintegrate and crumble.
The lesser the compression of tablets, the sooner they are suspected to be pulverized.
This is highly affected by the amount of moisture a drug contains, thus results in lesser thickness than required.
Though all of this can almost destroy a pharmaceutical business, the latest high shear mixers are always there to save them with their great densification and less-friability of particles and granules.
This heightens the need for these reactors as they benefit more than any of their traditional fellow.
6. Deeper dust suppression
Safety, in High shear mixer, not only matters when during the process, but also when the process is not even started.
Workers, while manufacturing, are in constant danger to different dangers.
High shear mixer may protect from chemicals or gases, but the truth is that very few of them can hold the power over dust generation.
Doesn’t matter what quality a reactor is, when it comes to adding raw substances in it, the desired outcome cannot be achieved without a messy and untidy machine.
Since the drugs and tablets are made with chemical substances, this becomes toxic for workers as dust is released by homogenizer once the manufacturing process starts.
This challenging job of mixing ingredients is made simple and comfortable by, once again, today’s advanced High Shear Granulators which come with the ability to obstruct dust particles to workers by using reduced dust suppression.
7. The effective process with predictable end-point
Last but not the least, by using these Granulators, you will also get the benefit to having an estimated time when the manufacturing process will be completed, henc getting comfort over time.
And end-point is the one when the desired results are reached and the required form of the final product is obtained.
In pharmacies, this gives lots of benefits regarding the proper formulation of drugs.
Other than the above-mentioned advantages, pharmaceutical industries are also profited by the use of High Shear Mixers:
- Enhanced operator safety: No question modern reactors offer a stronger grip on their performance.
- Flexibility to clean components quickly and effectively: This has given pharmaceutics a boost as brief cleaning simply means rapid restarting of homogenization once the previous one is finished.
- No extended downtimes: No concerns about the sudden decline of machines and no prolonged obstructions in processes, something which was very common in traditional machines.
- Continues input of raw material with steady output: Old mixers cannot compete with contemporary High-Speed Mixers in this one. You don’t have to wait or stop the process in the middle, rather you can keep on adding raw material and the result will still be great.
- Perfect homogenization, emulsification, and dispersion: Everything is nice and done with up-to-date machines.
- Less energy: fewer expenses: Today’s mixers not only take less time in processing but also less energy, which makes them favourable all across the globe.
- Rapid retooling: This goes hand-in-hand with quick processes as it offers a great deal of comfort.
- Sealing effect: This provides a protective case for the drugs to not be lubricated by dirt or grease.
- Low costs: This benefits in the long run, as having a machine that homogenizes in a single pass, with less energy usage and less binder solution will eventually result in substantially low running costs.
- Easy to install with almost no maintenance required: Here, ‘almost’ means you won’t find any difficulty in fitting and installing High Shear Granulatorsas they are built with an automated nature that doesn’t need daily maintenance.
- Safe from rust and corrosion: Finally, but most importantly, one reason behind the favourability of modern factory mixers is that their mechanical body is made of stainless steel which, other than increasing their sturdiness, also protects them from harsh elements such as rust and corrosion. Thus, any investment in these mixers will be a long term one!
3.What Are the Drawbacks of High Shear Mixer?
There is no doubt a High Shear Mixer is better than any of its traditional or contemporary counterparts,
but that doesn’t mean it is an excellent tool in all ways.
It does offer better quality and performance than any other mixer, including less time, less energy, fewer efforts, with better homogenizing, more protection, and rapid actions.
However, there are still some aspects in which you will notice a slightly lesser degree of advantage, though most of them can be avoided with appropriate use of the reactor.
Following are some of the drawbacks of High Shear Mixer which, if not carefully understood, may later result in extreme outcomes.
1. Less compressive granules in comparison to Low Shear Mixer
High shear mixer part
The difference between high and low sear mixers is something that you’ll learn later.
However, when it comes to the granulation process, a High Shear Mixer can be considered as providing less refined homogenization against a low shear mixer.
This, though, doesn’t impact the ability of a high shear reactor to produce a uniform distribution of particles.
2. Restrictive functioning parameters
Some users claim that though the latest reactors are full of quality and comfort, they also come with limited operations.
This, entirely, is untrue as you can always update your machine according to new demands and needs.
Modern-day mixers also come with many advanced features, but surely, they come at a price.
3. Fragile particles may result in mechanical deterioration
This is the reason why you should always choose a sturdy mixer, even if it is a Rotor-stator style mixer.
Delicate particles, during the distribution process, may harm the mechanical body of your mixer if not operated carefully.
4. The unstable temperature may result in deterioration of thermolabile materials
Till now, it must be clear that High shear mixer is a machine that uses mechanical energy to perform processes to mix different materials to one substance.
A thermolabile can be defined as any substance that may subject to any changes due to change in temperature.
Thus, a sudden temperature rise can badly result in chemical degradation, which, in return, destroys all the process.
5. Over-wetting the granules may contribute to larger concentrations
Granules-Photo Credit : West London Models
This is an obvious fact: careless/improper use of a high-speed mixer will undoubtedly impact the shape of the final product.
And thus, if the granules are over-wetted without proper focus, they can completely spoil the desired results.
6. Excessive material loading may lead to the destruction of mixer
Again, as said earlier, if you will not use your granulator with proper care and according to the right instructions, you may end up not only with a failed formulation but also with a deteriorated machine.
7. Binder ingredient: type and quantity may damage the reactor
This is why you should always keep in mind whether the High Shear Mixer you are going to invest in is capable to deal with the binder solution of your products.
Certain types of binder agent may affect the material body of your mixer, the same goes for quantity as an over-addition can also result in a deteriorated machine.
So, be careful.
8. Design and speed of your mixer
This is simple: the quality of your mixer should be under the intensity of your product.
If the two goes well, you’ll get more benefits. Keep in mind that the speed of bladed and the impeller are also important in this regard, and be given adequate attention.
That’s all! Remember that most of the drawbacks mentioned here are not always the negative points, and can be avoided with proper care and use of more advanced granulators.
4.What Are Different Types of High Shear Mixer?
Now that you have seen how much profitable modern mixers can be, now is the time to look deeper and see which shear mixer will suit you best according to the needs and requirements of your product, as certain types may be suitable for certain products.
Also, you can customize High shear mixer as per your needs and demands.
Typically, modern-day mixers differ in their versatility and functioning, as well as in their size and design.
The types are as follows:
- Batch High Shear Blenders
- Inline High Shear Mixers
- Power Induction High Shear Mixers
- High Shear Granulators
- Ultra-High Shear Inline Mixers
The explanation of each type is right here:
1. Batch High Shear Blenders
Aipak HDT Series Bin Blender
Also known as Batch Blenders, these blenders are widely famous for their larger capacities.
They don’t just take in large volumes, but also perform the mixing processes thoroughly, let it be homogenizing, dispersion, emulsification, disintegration, or simple blending of substances.
Typically, a Batch High Shear Mixer is capable of processing up to 8000 gallons which is a huge quantity.
When it comes to components, a large vessel or tank is an essential part of these mixers.
Other than that, a robust, high-speed motor with sharp blades and a sturdy shaft are also attached to maximize their functioning.
The shaft is connected to a high shear industrial laboratory work head which, with the help of an internal rotor, spins inside a panel or stationary stator.
Now comes the important part. Since Batch Blenders take in large volumes of materials, their ‘charging’ or mixing is usually operated at the top of the machine.
That being said, these mixers are fitted to the top of the vessel into a ‘mixing tank’ which consists of High shear mixer to operate.
One thing to remember is that such a blender can also be configured in different shapes: they can either be equipped on a stationary hydraulic floor stand that is positioned over other containers or vessels to add in the substances.
Capsules-Photo Credit: Pharmaceuticals
Or one blending head, servicing many vessels, may be installed and suspended for even finer processing.
Now, if talk about durability, Batch Shear Mixers are well-renowned for their faster processing powers than Inline blenders while keeping same both the material intake as well as the power rate.
Thus, they are ideal for industries which require more-than-usual faster operation along with a wider space.
The only drawback that you may find is in the cleaning aspect.
Since substances are mixed in much larger volumes, some, especially sticky ones may create a little mess in the tank.
This will require rapid cleaning before the blending of the next batch, otherwise, the new formulation will be contaminated from the previous products.
This problem can be easily solved by employing CIP (Clean in Place) systems in High shear mixers which are designed with the cleansing operation included as a part of their job.
Some advanced reactors also come up with the facility to ‘run dry’ as they operate, thus almost finishing all the work on their own.
This further contributes to the formulation of more substances as all the obstructions are eliminated!
2. Inline High Shear Mixers
Another type of modern mixers is Inline mixers which, if explained in one word, are excellent for continuous mixing.
This makes them valuable for industries which work with either fluids or powders since these mixers excel in blending substances for a long time without having any extended downtimes.
As for the benefits, these mixers are full of them.
High Shear In-Line blenders are incredibly effective and quick in service and can minimise blending periods by up to 90%. Thus, making any formulation process light-hearted and stress-free.
Whether it is the dispersion of solids, or emulsification of liquids, or simple homogenization of various substances, Inline mixers are built to handle every situation.
While the working principles of an Inline blender are no less effective than any of its parallel alternatives, they outdate all other options with their steadily compatible work-heads.
No difference between the work head is attached to an Inline mixer and the one that comes with a High Shear Batch Mixer and thus can be configured with different types of rotors as per need.
You should note that the basis of these reactors is operated by centrifugal force through which the machine moves continuously.
And this movement is obtained through pipework when the substances are added in the tank to start the recirculation.
The simplest design of Inline mixers includes a vessel and the storage and mixture of all raw materials are achieved using it.
This highly goes in conjunction with the strong power motor and the chamber that houses an inlet and an outlet at both ends.
You can always track the substance mixture and even alter the processing parameters as required.
There is not much difference between Batch Blenders and Inline ones, though the former one is best for large volumes while the later one facilitates for constant movement.
However, one thing that you’ll see in Inline mixers is that they come with closed chambers which eliminates maximum chances of dirt generation, something that is less present in Batch mixers.
Other benefits that you’ll get with Inline mixers over Batch ones is a stronger grip on their controls.
Also, they take less space and are very efficient when it comes to equilibrium mixing of substances. All the formulation will be completed in as little time as possible.
Once the required dispersion level is achieved, recirculation stops and High shear mixer then transfers it to downstream processes.
3. Powder Induction High Shear Mixers
Powder Induction High Shear Mixer
Powder Induction High Shear Mixers are another type of modern granulators.
What stands them out is their smooth working on the surface level, as compared to the alternatives which often work with top-mounted vessels.
Also knows as Inline Powder Induction Mixers, these blenders are a perfect all-in-one package: they are flexible to operate, have greater capability, and are portable.
The working of these mixers is smooth and straightforward.
That being said, they are built with vacuum systems that further add to their features.
The job of a vacuum pump in Powder Induction Mixers is to use a hopper to add powders into liquid substances.
Since earlier industrial mixers failed to thoroughly mix powder materials into other substances, it was nearly impossible to achieve a smooth homogenization without the formation of lumps.
It would not be wrong to say that these mixers tend to the most difficult task.
Since the incorporation of powder in liquid quickly leads to clumps, which, if not mixed properly, will completely ruin the shape of the final product.
That is why these mixers are designed to carefully add powdered substances into the liquid at a slow rate to achieve a non-lumped mixture.
Yet another problem can also stand out when the powder is added too slowly because first, it takes too much time to blend all the mixture.
Secondly, most of the times, the completion phase is reached too early with the lumps of undissolved particles still hovering in the mixture.
This incomplete homogenization, can not only result in the failed product but also put a big loss to the industry.
Bin Mixer of Aipak
Degradation of both substances and the mechanical body of High shear mixer is another constant threat in case of these reactors.
By adding powder too fast, or too slow, both can imbalance the temperature rate which can further lead to harmful chemical reactions.
Especially if the factory mixers have close chambers, any difference in variation will result in a total loss.
Once the mixture is spoiled, it cannot be used any further and will be all wasted.
That is the reason modern Powder Induction High Shear Mixers come with designs that allow the user to have better control over the power.
This helps a lot in situations when the desired mixture has deteriorated with thick lumps or too thin fluid form.
Though proper care is still required, advanced mixers are capable of powder incorporation to a consistent rate without ruining all the process.
4. High Shear Granulators
High Shear Mixer Granulators or High Shear Granulators are one of the most significant types of factory mixers, perhaps because granulation was never so simple without their assistance.
Unlike other mixers that focus on processes such as emulsification, dispersion, or homogenization, a Granulator focuses on a process known as Agglomeration.
This process doesn’t include mixing of any solid into a liquid, or vice versa.
Rather, it involves a single solid substance and the liquid only assists in the formation process.
It is also known as Granulation process or Wet Granulation.
Since liquid in this procedure acts as a binding agent, the desired result is achieved in the form of granules, which are strong and dense shaped particles also called agglomerates.
The initial powder, which later is to be converted into a granular product, is referred to as fine powder or native powder.
Earlier propellers, though were capable of this conversion, lacked in the proper elimination of fluid to make the final product.
However, with today’s High Shear Granulators, you can not only successfully perform Agglomeration, but also, they come with the proper equipment to do the irreversible action: converting particles into a fine powder.
Now, let me take you to the bottom of this process. It involves three phases.
The first one is the Wetting phase, which is done by generally mixing the native powder into the binding agent, that is, a liquid.
This incorporation will lead to the formation of dense granules or thick agglomerates, which are called as Nuclei.
The Nuclei are nothing but small masses of powder sticking to the molecules of the liquid.
Now, the proper Agglomeration will require the thorough blending of both the substances, and for that, the Growth phase is required.
Nothing much happens in this phase, as the dense granules already formed collide with each other due to the mechanical mixing of High Shear Granulators.
When the thick agglomerates strike each other, due to the binding agent, they become thicker.
Lastly comes the Breakage phase when the shear granulator has made all the little powder masses a denser mixture.
It must be noted here that no uniform distribution of masses will happen and for that, High shear mixer breaks them once again.
After this re-breaking, particles will be uniformly distributed and the final shape of the product will be achieved.
An interesting thing to remember here is that though typically a liquid act as the binding agent, you can also make use of a dry powder instead.
It is first melted with a rise in temperature by either the mechanical energy or internal heaters.
This is even better since the last step of Agglomeration involves the elimination of fluid from the final product.
With the addition of a dry powder as a binding solution, this elimination can be completely avoided and results can be achieved earlier.
5. Ultra-High Shear Inline Mixers
Ultra High Shear Mixer
There are many names for this mixer type.
Though they are commonly called UltrHigh shear mixers. What makes them special is that these machines tend to have the ability of both Incline and Granule mixers.
Simply stated, they are highly famous for their fast speeds and finest powdered formation.
They are also known as Lab High Shear Mixers due to their high-functionality which offers a vast number of benefits.
First of all, they successfully outdo their traditional alternatives which were incapable of mixing denser products.
Not only that, they are highly excellent for industries which need High shear mixer, but not of intense capability as over-mixing can immediately spoil the product.
Thus, the world benefitted a lot with the invention of UltrHigh shear mixers as they can do what ancient stirrers or agitators failed to provide.
Inside the body of such reactor are stators which come with definitive slots.
The initial substances are incorporated in High shear mixer through these holes to be mixed thoroughly.
It is significant to note that these slots are precise, which lessens the chances of over-addition or less-incorporation of substances.
Ultra High Shear Mixer- Photo Credit:Powderbulksolids
Once the materials have been forcibly incorporated, the homogenization process begins at a very faster rate, thanks to their capability.
At times, the on-going momentum is also altered which result in more a vigorous operation.
This then breaks down the substances into extremely narrow particles.
They are built with heavy motors that have sharp blades made of stainless steel. The heavy-duty bearings make sure all the substances are thoroughly mixed without any formulation of lumps left behind.
Advanced controls are also included since the speed of these mixers is faster than other machines.
Lastly, one benefit that you get with them is that ‘sub-micrometre’ uniform distribution of particles can be easily achieved with advanced Ultra-High Shear Inline Mixer, something that seemed impossible for a long time in the past.
Also, since they come with the qualities of both Inline and Granule mixers, this eventually means that their advanced technology requires lesser maintenance with more output.
5.What Are the Components of High Shear Mixer Machine?
Components -Photo Credit: comasa-sa
After deeply understanding different types of mixers, there specialities and differences from one another, now I will mention different, yet essential components required in a High Shear Mixer.
It must be noted that since there are many types of these mixers and each type serves for a different case, the same goes for their internal parts.
Following are the basic components of a High-Speed Mixer:
- Mixing impeller/bowl/pot/vessel/container.
- Cylindrical mixing rotor/bowl/agitator
- Motor Driving System (to drive the agitator)
- Control system
- Spray nozzle (for binding agent)
- Discharge port
- External frame and Sealing equipment
- Additional supplementary equipment
· Mixing Impeller/bowl/pot/vessel/container
This component is known with many names and is one of the most important parts in High shear mixer.
It serves as a key component whatever the process is to function.
Since it is the part where all the substances are incorporated to be mixed, it should be of premium quality to help the mixture attain its final form.
In shape, it is much like a cone and comprises of bottom corners which not only add to its functionality by allowing the ingredients to be uniformly distributed but also help in their cleansing phase where any clumps or denser masses are removed.
I talk about thickness, its width is 8mm which is ideal for any mixing machine.
The typical capacity for a High Shear Mixer ranges from 3 to 680 litres, which again, is an excellent volume space for most of the substances to mix in each other.
Due to intense mixing speed, typical rotators are built with up to 900 RPM.
The safety is also an important matter, and for that, the lid is kept airtight with a silicone rubber gasket.
Contrary to what it sounds, it is not heavy, rather lightweight to be easily lifted.
· Cylindrical mixing rotor/bowl/agitator
Inside the mixing pot/bowl/vessel/container is the rotator/agitator which comprise of sharp blades to break down particles into a uniform mixture. In shape, it is much like the letter ‘z’.
Though it can come in many forms and sizes, the most common are two-blade rotator and three-blade rotator.
The difference between both is that the later one is less functional unless provided with high rotational energy, while the later one, though is less-speedy in compared to a three-blade rotator, is built with extended sideways to double the blending rate.
What you should remember is that these blades run through a motor which is another important component of a High-Speed Mixer and thus to some extent, their functionality also depends on the capability of the motor.
However, when it comes to speed, a general rotator is designed with the capability to run at the speed of up to 480 RPM.
· Motor Driving System (to drive the agitator)
Motor used in High Shear Mixer-Photo Credit : Silverson
As mentioned earlier, a motor is required to run the blades inside the agitator.
Even if the blades are made of strongest and fastest steel, their ability to move will still be dependent to a degree on the type of motor that supplies energy.
That is why one should focus on the power and capability of both components.
A ‘Motor Driving System’ comprises of necessary parts required for the smooth working of a High Shear Homogenizer.
This includes rotator, stator, and blades. A stator is the stationary element of a motor which provides the rotator with an electric power to move, which further moves the blades.
The more power the motor supplies, the faster blades will move.
But it should be kept in mind that a balance between the speed of the motor and the strength of blades is necessary.
Disperser blade in high shear mixer-Photo Credit : GrabCAD
Even if blades are fixed on a rotator, and rotator is moved by a motor, blades are still an important component of High shear mixer.
A chopper or set of blades, though seemingly insignificant, provide the basis of High shear mixer as they make sure the initial materials are well-incorporated into the final substance.
They are located at the sideways in the cylindrical agitator.
The speed of these blades is extremely fast, ranges between 1500 to 3000 FU, thus one should be carefully checking them.
Today’s blades are made with stainless steel which protects them from rust and corrosion.
An important point here is that though the blades have a fast speed, they cannon run until there is a motor to provide them with energy.
Therefore, again stating, both the components should be per each other.
This is a very crucial point and the reason many advanced mixers fail to provide the desired result is that their Motor Driving System and blades don’t go well with each other.
· Control system
A High Shear Mixer is not a child’s toy to play with.
It is a proper machine and therefore requires a system to properly control it. And for this reason, mixers come with a ‘Control System’ in them to ensure the right their right use.
A typical Control System comprises of:
1. Control hardware
Control Hardware- Photo Credit: Vector
The most prominent part of the Control System is Control Hardware, and just like computer hardware, it also has multiple components to perform various jobs, let it be operational, technological, or programmable.
In simple words, a Control Hardware has the responsibility to ensure that throughout all the homogenization process, there is access to each bit of it.
And this sudden approach at any point in the mixing operation is done through a GUI environment is included.
The Control System also consist of other components to help it have a constant check on the machine, and they mainly include switches, actuators, remotes, sensors, and control valves.
2. Operational Panel
An Operational Panel is the one that seems like a digital tablet. Just like an office working on different tasks, the Operational Panel is responsible for making all the controls directly ‘accessible’ to the user.
Thus, it is a part of Control System and the place where you can supervise your High Shear Reactor.
It consists of a touch screen showcasing access to different commands, and this display is secured inside stainless-steel covering.
Since digital gadgets are highly prone to any substance, the casing ensures its safety.
You can control your mixer by using the ON/OFF button on the panel as well as EMERGENCY button, and multiple other options.
3. Electric components
The panel has all the digital access, while these electric components offer you all the physical access to control options.
You can find them in a small cabinet shapes case inside the technical chamber.
All these components mainly include relays, electronic and pneumatic switches, control transformer, and other electrical parts etc.
4. Operating Software
Finally, there is an Operating Software. All the mechanical system of High shear mixer comes under the authority of this software.
It monitors as well as operate it, which means to order initiating/ending of different functions.
Mostly, tasks like incorporating one substance into the other, homogenizing, chopping, or spraying are the responsibility of Operation Software.
The working place of this software is the digital panel, where the data is input, transmitted, and communicated.
All these four components make the ‘Control System’ which authorizes the High Shear Mixer.
· Spray nozzle (for binding agent)
Spray nozzle used in shear mixer-Photo Credit:Spraytechsystem
The nozzle is such an essential component in High shear mixer that without it, you cannot successfully perform any infusion process.
Especially in those procedures which involve liquid as a binding agent, i.e., Wet Granulation processes, a nozzle is highly required.
Since the binging solution is not directly added into the mixture, rather sprayed, it is recommended to have a nozzle that could be positioned above the mixture.
This spraying of fluid is done with the help of a peristaltic pump by breaking the fluid into tiny droplets. Remember that this breaking of liquid is not only the job of a nozzle but to evenly distribute it in the mixture is also done by it.
This capability is judged by the faster rate of spraying along with pressure on the peak.
There are many different types of nozzles and their material range from peristaltic to mechanical and others.
Any of them can be used, but again, the type of material will be according to the substances which will be used in the processes.
· Discharge port
The Discharge Port or Discharge Unit is the part of a High Shear Reactorwhich is directly involved in the successful formulation of the final product.
Since it is the place which discharges or ‘releases’ the mixture once it is made, any contamination, dirt, or grease will eventually lead to bad results.
It consists of discharge cylinders and pneumatic valves and both of them are responsible for not only keeping the product safe but also to safely emit it.
That is why a silicone O shaped ring is used to protect the valve.
A component that is of high value when it comes to homogenization is Co-mill.
With the direct approach, it is in charge of the smooth mixing of initial substances to desired consistency.
It also makes sure that the Granulation process is performed without any obstruction as well as the Agglomeration one too.
· External frame and Sealing equipment
The frame is to protect the mechanical body of High shear mixer, and the one made from stainless steel does its job perfectly.
Also, it protects other parts of High shear mixer and keeps them in their respective place.
Though the quality of a frame greatly depends upon the internal structure of High shear mixer, it should be sturdy and robust to effectively maintain the overall weight of High shear mixer and its other components.
Next is the Sealing equipment, which, as the name implies, is for the protection, and the most appropriate ones in this regard are Teflon seals which work great.
· Additional supplementary equipment
While all the important components of a High-Speed Mixer are mentioned above, it is significant to note that there are also some other parts which, though are not essential, yet play a key role in the enhanced performance of High shear mixer.
These include Ups (for a stable control system), Data recorder module (for storing data), and modem (for direct access the PC or PLC of High shear mixer).
6.What Is the Working Method of High Shear Mixing Machine?
Working of high shear- Photo Credit: sparklerfilterpress
No matter what the type of a mixing machine, they all have almost the same general working principles.
However, the difference in the general working comes under the terms of wet granulation and dry granulation, since regardless of materials, both of them are different from each other.
Since I said ‘regardless of materials’, it means that the only thing that makes a difference in both procedures is not the substances to be mixed, but the binding agent.
In wet granulation, the binding agent can be any adhesive or solution. Contrary to this, in dry granulation, there is no binding agent but only the compression that mixes the ingredients.
Now it’s the time to understand how a High Shear Machine works!
First of all, even before the machine is used, it is mandatory to get all the materials ready.
The reason why you should do it beforehand is to not only save time but also to keep them safe during the procedure from any late incorporation.
This step can be easily done by taking help from any processing machines namely Vibro sifters, milling machines, or ovens.
Now, once the products to be added are ready, double-check them if they are compressible, and have enough moisture in them to be processed thoroughly, are rigid, and in required size.
Do note that all these parameters are for wet granulation, while dry one requires substances that are temperature and moisture sensitive.
On the second step, you’ll add these materials into the vessel. Not as easy as it seems unless you have an automated machine which needs only a button to start.
Press it and you are good to go! Now if you don’t have an automated system, and your machine requires a manual start, you need to follow these steps: open the lid of the vessel, then drain all your powdered material in it.
You can also first put your powder in a separate container, and then throw it in the vessel.
Make sure not to fill the mixing chamber of your High-Speed Mixer as otherwise, the lid won’t be tightly closed.
This process is robotic in an automated system.
After you have added the material, you should turn the machine on.
But before doing it, make sure that the vacuum valve is closed while the exhaust one is opened.
Just as the machine starts, the motor will provide energy to the rotator to rotate the blades and this will create some noise.
Set the speed of chopper and impeller through your display panel and it would be better if you have decided it beforehand to avoid any confusion.
Do remember that the rotation speed should be per the material properties. You can also set it on a standard level.
Now, inside the vessel, the whirling would begin. At this point, the binding agent will be added to the mixture. Though it is an automated process.
This step involves the discharging of granules once the required consistency is obtained. It is automated.
The nozzle will turn off, agitator will stop, and the discharging port will open to drain the resulted mixture into the milling unit where drying process will take place.
Lastly, drying is a process mandatory for moisturized products.
In case of wet granules, they are put into the drying vessel. After that, the final product is ready to be taken out.
Ta-Da! And you are done!
7.What Are the User Requirement Specification for The High Shear Mixing?
Why do you need this part?
Well, simply because User Requirement Specification (URS) is a document that enlists all the details related to the High Shear Mixer including the way it is built, its design, its relation with the manufacturer, as well as its testing.
Take into account that this document is necessary for a guaranteed shear mixer.
Thus, the Validation Proposal acts as confirmation proof that the given mechanical apparatus qualifies in performance, operation, and installation processes.
This is to be ensured by the manufacturer of the machine and the related safety bodies involved.
Look for these per your mixer’s capacity, though a general range is up to 680 L Vol in a 1000 L Vol:
- Performance Qualification Test
- Operation Qualification Test
- Installation Qualification Plan
When it comes to ‘Design Qualification’, you’ll receive two copies of these documents:
- IQ & OQ protocol and report
- Equipment operational compliance
- Instructional Installation Manual
- All Electrical Plans Drawings
- Equipment completeness and compliance with the designs.
- All Mechanical Plans Drawings
Other than that, the manufacturer will also provide you with:
- Service Manual
- Installation Manual
- Operational Manual
- Wiring Diagrams
- P & I Drawings
- Equipment Layout
- Routine Maintenance Schedule
- A List Of All The Spare Parts
Next are Product Certificates, which include
- Calibration Certificates
- Noise Level Certification
- Conformity Declaration
- Material Certificates for All Non-Metallic Parts in Contact with The Product
- Material Certificates for All Metallic Parts in Contact with The Product
Before buying the equipment, both the parties should ensure that it is under all the required regulations and all the documents received are authentic and show no irrelevancy.
If you are the buyer, negotiate with your supplier for the inspection’s tests before the placement of order.
A Supervise Site Acceptance Test (SAT) holds a great place in this regard.
Once the purchase is made, the installation process of the equipment will be supervised by the supplier.
8.What Are the Applications of High Shear Mixer?
All across the globe, industries take great advantage of the high-functionality, versatility, and comfort brought by modern High Shear Granulators.
As said earlier, the larger volume with the less binding solution and less time-consuming procedures have revolutionized the industrial procedures.
Some of the high-demanding applications of these mixers are:
Aipak 3D High Shear Mixer
- the manufacturing of drugs and medications
- the production of healing creams, tubes, and ointments
- the formation of tablets and syrups
- the formation of contact lenses and ophthalmic solutions.
Chemical processing industries
Chemical Process Mixing-Photo Credit: Processingindustry
- Production of paper coatings and drilling liquids
- Formulation of paints and pigments
- Manufacturing of polishes including automotive and solids
- Formation of agricultural pesticides
- Production of acids and bases.
Cosmetic and toiletries industries
- Manufacturing of creams and lotions
- Formation of sunscreen and lubricants
- Production of deodorants and antiseptics
- Production of lipstick, nail paints
- Manufacturing of shampoo, conditioners, and hair oils
- Formation of soaps and hand sanitisers
- Formation of toothpaste
Food and beverage industries
Food and Beverage Mixing-Photo credit: Adobe XD
- Formation of tetra pack milk, milk drinks
- Formation of processed cheese, margarine, yogurt
- Preparation of smoothies, sweet syrups
- Production of processed cookies
- Production of soft drinks
- Production of processed sauces, mayonnaise etc.
- Formation of salad dressings
9.Why Do You Need A High Shear Mixing Machine?
Go High as u can-Photo Credit: businessstock
The answer is simple when you have to buy High shear mixer, why don’t just go for the best option?
Today’s mixers are nothing like traditional turbines and propellers, rather they are much advanced and come with lots of benefits.
If you are someone who is thinking of going into industrial manufacturing of products, or if you are already into one but need new equipment, then a High Shear Mixer is a worthwhile option.
Not only you get more output in lesser time, but it also saves energy and efforts.
It takes less granulation time with even less binder solution which in the long run will save you a big cost!
If you are a starting business in any industry which involves the mixing of ingredients, then you should get one of these mixers because they, unlike their counterparts, excel in homogenization, emulsification, dispersion, and other similar processes.
With all that, they don’t require much maintenance and the material is even rust and corrosion-free!
They are easy to install and offer rapid retooling with a quick cleansing process built in their operating systems.
You will get a uniform distribution of granules with more protection.
Thus, no waste of product in any way!
10. How do you Compare High Shear Mixer with a Low Shear ?
High Shear Mixer with a Low Shear
Aipak Horizontal Tanker Mixer Machine
Until now, it must be clear that High shear mixer is a piece of equipment widely used in industries for the manufacturing of different products.
This ranges from pharmacies to cosmetics and even food industries gain a lot by using High Shear Mixers.
But the point here is that a high shear mixer is a type of Shear Mixers. And the other type is called a Low Shear Mixer.
So, what is the difference between both? Before I explain that, it should be noted that the differences in both the types emerge from the type of ingredients they work with.
The general principle working of both is the same.
To understand better, following is a list of specifications to clear all your doubts:
The reason High Shear Mixers are acknowledged plus favoured all across the globe is their capability to function under relatively high pressure along with high mixing speeds.
While on the other hand, Low Shear Mixers are not suitable for such high mixing, rather they go well with low or medium pressure.
Thus, they are more perfect for ingredients that require gentle mixing.
Now, if talk about density, High Shear Mixers excel in breaking down denser particles and converting them into a fine powder.
Contrary to this, Low Shear Mixers are best for ingredients that are not that much dense, i.e., are lightweight.
As mentioned earlier, High Shear Mixers work with heavy ingredients, thus they can easily break them into small sizes.
They even are perfect for sticky fluids.
While Low Shear Mixers have a reverse order regarding this.
That is, they won’t work unless particles are extremely small.
Energy and time
High Shear Mixers need more energy to function than Low Shear Mixers which work fine on low energy.
Also, the former ones take more time in processing, while the latter one is used for little timely procedures.
Low Shear Mixers have a simple, gentle structure in comparison to study, robust, and complex structure of High Shear Mixers.
High Shear Mixers are super-common in industries including cosmetics, food, beverages, pharmaceutical, and toiletries industries, while Low Shear Mixtures mostly are used in homes for DIY processes.
11.What Quality Factors You Need to Have for High Shear Mixer?
Surely you want the best mixer in the world, but does ‘best in the world’ means ‘best for you’ too?
No, it doesn’t! Because on the internet you’ll find not only hundreds but thousands of sellers and companies claiming their product as the ‘best in the world’.
But how will that decide for you?
That is why I have listed here six factors that you should think before going for your High Shear Mixer!
1. What are your material characteristics?
It is not like you’ll go in the market and instantly get High shear mixer that the seller will suggest.
That is why you need to do some pre-preparations before-hand.
Before you even go, ask yourself what is the particle strength of your material? Will it go well with micro or macro mixing?
What is the shape, size, and density of the substances that you’ll use in your mixer? Do both things come under the same line?
2. What will be the conditions and requirement during processing?
The first part was to acknowledge the substances, while this one is related to their mixing procedure.
Does your processing require a binding agent? If yes, what would it be?
Also, don’t forget to make sure that High shear mixer you are going to have, is it suitable for your production line?
What are the safety features, capacity, and operating system?
3. What are the cleaning requirements of that mixer?
Yes, modern High Shear Mixers come with built-in maintenance features, but that can vary from one seller to others.
So, does your future mixer require less or more maintenance?
Also, after a formulation is completed, how will it be cleaned? Does it come with dust suppression technology?
4. What is your required mixture quality?
Now, this is an important point, so pay attention.
Here, you are asked to think about your final product, as at times, even if all the ingredients are carefully calculated, the desired result is still not achieved.
Therefore, you need to carefully examine the discharging unit and the emission of final substance before you finalize your mixer.
5. How well your mixer handles temperature rise?
I have said it multiple times that any temperature rise can result in extreme chemicals which not only can ruin the final product but also adversely damage the equipment.
This point is often ignored by many buyers.
Make sure that your mixer has a tough control over temperature and offers a stronger grip over it.
6. What will be the overall cost?
In the end, you should calculate all the cost that one product formulation will take.
This will help you understand if High shear mixer is capable of using less energy with more output or does it drain your money.
Add up all the maintenance costs, power consumptions, and price of wasted products between multiple formulations, mixer’s technical capabilities and estimate life expectancy.
12.What Is the Technical Specification and Features of a High Shear Mixer?
This refers to how capable a High Shear Mixeris in technical terms:
- the time it takes (varies),
- at what speed (avg. 160 – 790 RPM),
- the power of the motor (1.5 kW),
- volume (680 L Vol in a total 1000 L Vol),
- the density of substances it can handle,
- power consumption for a single formulation,
- amount of compressed air (avg. 0.1 m^3 /min),
- weight (avg. 200 kg), and
- Dust suppression.
Following are the most important, and comforting features of a High Shear Mixer(other than the one it surely offers such as even distribution of particles).
- Observation panel
- Operation mode
- Control system
- Predictable end-time (and) control
- Temperature regulation
- Dust suppression
- Emergency stops
- Heat insulation
- Less maintenance
13.Why Should You Buy Aipak High Shear Mixer?
Aipak is a famous pharmaceutical equipment manufacturer with its name in the marketing industry for more than ten years.
Its machines are filled with everything one would look for: they are advanced, packed with modern features, and give more than they take.
High Shear Mixers manufactured by Aipak stand out in their quality and long-term functionality.
Not only that, they come up with a high-quality system that ensures the successful granulation process with less time, less energy, and less binding solution.
Along with, you are saved from prolonged downtimes, cost of wasted product, as well as unstable consistency.
Another important thing to note is that Aipak’s mixers are very easy to install and maintain and it even offers full training and support for any problem that occurs.
Which means, a 24/7 customer support system will always be available for Aipak’s consumers!
14.How Do You Troubleshoot High Shear Mixer?
Troubleshooting High shear mixer can seem to be a difficult job, however, with the right piece of information, you don’t have to worry about anything.
Following are the most common troubleshooting problems one can face while working with High Shear Mixers.
- The motor is stuck and does not rotate
Check if there are any heavy particles or residue on the rotator and if there are, remove them carefully.
Look if the power supply is ON. If not, check the amplifier.
- High amplifier value / unstable amplifier value
Turn High shear mixer OFF.
Wait for some minutes and recheck if there is an unstable temperature rise as well as all transmissions are stable or not.
- High Shear rotor facing magnetic disconnection
This happens because of charging failure or when the rotor is rotating in the wrong direction.
Readjust rotational direction multiple times to see if it works and tighten up the bearings.
- Scratches caused by the rotor on the tank plate
This mostly happens when you use a loose stator.
Replace the bearings, tighten them up strictly, and readjust rotational direction multiple times to ensure the safety.
- Scratches caused by driving-head on tank plate
This is caused by either loose driving head or drives unit is out of place.
Clean if there is any residue left. Exchange motor and adapter and tighten the driving head against the shaft.
- Unusual noise is coming out of High Shear Mixer
When the motor supplies energy to the rotator, a noise is heard, but in case of an unusual noise is the symbol of dry running.
15.How Do You Maintain a High Shear Mixer?
Deciding what mixer, you need, and what type will go excellent with your materials is important.
But what is more crucial than that is the proper timely maintenance of your equipment.
It is not a little investment, which can be left to waste.
Therefore, to have your High-Speed Mixer in the long run, you must have healthy maintenance of your mixer to avoid any problem.
Following are the parts of High shear mixer and what actions to take if you see cautions:
1.High Shear Motor
High shear motor-Photo Credit: greaves
It should be kept safe from external particles, any surface damage and scratches.
Take immediate action if you see any left residue on it, or the rotating speed is less than usual.
2.High Shear Stator
The stainless steel should be protected from any surface damage by the careful operation.
The O shaped rings should be replaced once cracked/changed colour.
The same goes for the blades, once their teeth are damaged, should be replaced immediately. In the case of nuts, they can be polished.
3.High Shear Tank Plate
The upper thread of the tank plate is most prone to damage.
Use a screw to check if it goes into the thread. If not, replace it.
4. Drive Unit
External particles are harmful. Therefore, constant check-up of the magnet should be done.
If you see any stuck residue, clean it.
Other than that, make sure you keep all the parts of your mixer oiled, and try to keep its interior save from external hazards as much as possible, and take care of cleanliness.
16.Why Should You Use High Shear Mixer Instead of Agitator?
Capsules-Photo Credit: pharmatrends
An agitator, like a shear mixer, is a device that rotates whatever is put in it.
Its types vary from washing agitators to magnetic ones and more, and it comes in various sizes and shapes.
With such a description, it may look like both the devices are alike, yet there is a huge difference in the functioning of both.
Before I go deeper and mention any internal difference, it should be noted that the basic function of an agitator is to ‘move’.
Since in the case of a High Shear Mixer, the prime aim is not to move the substances but also to obtain the desired consistency, this outdoes the agitators.
Especially when it comes to industrial purposes, one cannot achieve the uniform distribution of particles through an agitator.
As the main difference lies in their basic functions, it opens further differences in their capability, versatility, and comfort-ability.
Thus, for an industrial purpose where a final product is required, the first and foremost option should always be a High Shear Mixer and not an agitator.
17.How Can I Mix Without Including Air?
This is done through the rotor/stator work-head when it, using its rotating ability, gives rise to a circulatory pattern.
And the interesting thing to note is that all this involves as minimum aeration as possible because the pattern is formed before the liquid surface.
Here comes the concluding part, but before that, I am certain you must have gained a fair idea of what a High Shear Mixer exactly is.
In simple words, it’s a device highly used in industries to achieve a uniform consistency by adding up different substances.
Traditional turbines and propellers cannot outdo it because they lack in proper mixing processes.
There is a huge lot of benefits that you get with these shear mixers.
Above everything, processes which were earlier considered nearly impossible to perform have become a piece of cake with the help of advanced High Shear Mixers.
From dispersion of solids to emulsification of liquids, and Agglomeration of powders, these mixers can handle anything.
They also offer more output in less time and save you the cost of excessive energy.
As well as you don’t have to wait for prolonged downtimes and can obtain your desired results with an estimated time!
Even today’s mixers are designed with built-in maintenance, which save both the time and effort.
There are many types of High Shear Mixers, but despite that, all of them have the same working principles.
The only difference comes in the quality of ingredients.
The same goes for high shear and a low shear mixer as both only contrasts in their use of substances.
The benefits High shear mixer offers are more than the drawbacks, but that doesn’t eliminate them.
However, this should always be remembered that maximum efficiency can be achieved by careful use of the machine.
Thus, one should take much care, especially when it comes to High Shear Mixers.
Even if High shear mixers capable of cleaning themselves, you should always watch out for any leftover residue.
Also, external hazardous elements can be very harmful to the healthy functioning of High shear mixer.
A routine check-up with necessary replacements of worn-out/deteriorated parts is better than wasting the machine in the long run.
Lastly, if you are about to purchase a High Shear Mixer, do some preparation before-hand to avoid later problems.
This include carefully understanding the quality of your substances to be put in High shear mixer, their compatibility with the binding agent, required mixture consistency, and the overall expenditure.
This goes all well with the Aipak mixers which excel in their handling of even the most vicious and rigorous substances.
Not only their High Shear Mixersare better than other counterparts in the market, but they also offer a 24/7 customer service.
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