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Chementator: A new spin on making emulsions

By Chemical Engineering |

Kokusan Co. (Tokyo; edlinks.chemengonline.com/5827-531) has developed a new type of emulsifier that uses centrifugal force to drive mixtures through specially designed nozzles. The system is said to be less complex than conventional high-shear mixing devices, and operates at much lower pressures than other nozzle-based systems, which typically require a piston pump to force products through stationary or variable orifices at pressures of 800–3,000 bar. The new emulsifier (picture) is composed of a rotating vessel (rotor), which has four or eight nozzles around the outer perimeter, and a shell, which both accommodates the rotor and serves as a collector for the product. Each nozzle consists of two discs: The first disc (on the inlet side) has two channels and the second disc (on the outlet side) has a single, smaller-diameter channel. The channels of both discs are connected by rectangular grooves machined into the contacting face of the first disc. Raw ingredients are introduced into the top of the rotor, which rotates at a speed of about 5,000 rpm. The centrifugal force (2,000–3,000 G) causes the mixture to flow through the two channels of the first disc, merge within the groove, and then emerge through the channel of…
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