Aside from trial and error and pilot-scale studies, manufacturers tend not to have concrete methods of deciding what process equipment works best for their application. Identifying a powder’s relevant properties helps to narrow the equipment design choices because equipment differs in its suitability for different powders. This article describes three case studies where multifaceted powder characterization was critical to determining the right process equipment.
This article describes the sieving, classifying, and other types of testing that Elcan offers in its test center. A customer who needed titanium powder for 3D printing analyzed sent the company a sample. Test center staff used a variety of equipment to determine particle shape, size, and distribution, which allowed the customer to properly layer the titanium powder in its 3D printer for the best result.
A cyclone’s service life is unpredictable — especially in certain applications. Erosion is one of the reasons. In this article, columnist Ray Cocco describes how to measure and reduce erosion in cyclones. He also discusses how things such as dust collection efficiency and pressure drop can be affected by erosion and other cyclone issues.
No matter what type of bulk solid material is being processed, the process is likely to require air-material separation equipment to maintain a safe workspace and achieve optimal production rates. Material property testing can help you choose the most effective type of separation equipment. This article describes what type of material testing should be performed and how to use the test data to ensure the equipment’s optimal performance.
In this column, author Ray Cocco covers understanding drag forces as a concept. While we tend to think of drag force as applied to all particles, as a whole or as a single particle phase, drag force needs to be considered on a per-particle basis. This can be beneficial in designing or troubleshooting granular–fluid unit operations, such as those involving particles in a gas or liquid flow. Ray explains how.
By replacing a particle counter with an automatic, scanning- laser particle analyzer, Du Pont accurately measures particle size for hydrated alumina powder and speeds testing time by 90 percent.
This article explains how to test for, quantify, and mitigate unwanted particle breakage in bulk solids handling processes.
Powder testing can help a powder processing plant in a variety of ways but evaluating the return-on-investment (ROI) needed to justify the equipment purchase can be tricky.
Columnist Ray Cocco explains the difference between dilute- and dense-phase conveying and offers advice on when dense-phase conveying can be a more cost-effective option.
Columnist Ray Cocco describes the various phases of powder and bulk solids flow and how those phases can impact your process.
Understanding powder behavior is essential for optimizing bulk solids production processes and developing high-quality products.
Columnists Fernando Muzzio and Savitha Panikar explain how chemical imaging can help determine the reason a blended product fails to meet homogeneity specifications.
This article explains how testing a bulk material's characteristics and analyzing your process conditions can help you prevent arches that stop material flow.
Uniaxial shear testing provides many of the same fundamental parameters and is simpler than biaxial shear testing for characterizing powders, but challenges have prevented the testing method’s widespread adoption.
Columnist Ray Cocco discusses three of the most common types of interparticle forces in particle technology and the headaches they can cause.
Today’s engineered materials often are made up of larger particles created from clusters of nanoparticles. This article describes how you can use breakage analysis to minimize degradation.
Material caking along your bulk storage vessel's walls can prevent your material from flowing smoothly and discharging completely from the vessel, creating major production headaches. Find out how you can prevent or mitigate the problems by changing your material or modifying your storage vessel or process.
When designed correctly, a standpipe can give you many years of trouble-free operation. When poorly designed, however, the device can be your worst nightmare. This article looks at standpipes, including how they function, what problems they can cause, and how to design them to prevent these problems.
This article explains how an automatic shear cell tester can help you measure a new product's flowability to prevent costly powder flow problems during production.
Your powder's properties -- such as porosity, hardness, strength, taste, color, appearance, and stability -- depend on the material's particle size distribution. As a result, you spend a lot of your processing dollars on reducing or enlarging your powder's particle size. But how do you effectively determine your manufacturing process's endpoint? Are you wasting money reducing or enlarging your powder beyond the final product spec? This article explains how single-particle optical sensing obtains particle sizing information that can help you accurately determine your process endpoint.
This article updates information the author presented in a PBE article over a decade ago [August 1987] on using sieves to measure particle size distribution of dry bulk materials. The new information reflects current research and practice in the sieve-using community. Sections cover how sieve analysis is used, sample acquisition and preparation, test equipment condition, test procedure, and data reduction-presentation. Related information addresses the place sieve analysis holds among particle sizing techniques.
Thanks to advances in lasers, computers, automation, and other modern technologies, particle characterization methods are evolving rapidly. This article discusses one recently developed method: dynamic image analysis. Because it characterizes particle shape as well as size, the method can provide advantages over laser diffraction for sizing non-spherical particles.
Particles are more ubiquitous than many companies realize. The good news that particle technology resources are becoming more plentiful.