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Looking for Improved Accuracy in Powder Flow Measurements?

Author: William Starke
by William Starke
Posted: May 20, 2017

Granular material has great relevance in our everyday lives – Whether it be construction material, food grains, medical capsules, and tablets, they are all in the powder form for most part. Since they have such widespread use, their distribution and packaging on a large scale are the concerns of the industries involved.

Behavior Of Granular Material And Powders

Granular material is a conglomeration of individual, macroscopic particles. Apart from powders, some granular material we are familiar with are corn flakes, ball bearings, nuts, rice, and coal. When these particles are in movement, there is constant friction among them, leading to loss of energy in the system as such. They exhibit a wide range of pattern forming behaviors during flow. Powders because of their small sized particles are more cohesive and can be suspended in a gas also, allowing them to exhibit gaseous properties.

Flow Instruments And Powder Flow Testers

In general, flow instruments like the mass flow meter, magnetic flow meter, air flow meter etc. are used to measure the flow of a liquid or gas. Powder flow instruments are somewhat different as they are dealing with a different animal altogether – the powder. Powders exhibit complex behavior and their flowability is not so much an intrinsic property as it is a combination of that and the powder handling equipment. The behavior it exhibits under the given conditions of temperature, pressure, nature of the powder handling equipment sets certain benchmarks with which powder flow can be predicted during manufacturing process. This is important because the content uniformity and weight standards of the final product must be adhered to. It is based on these powder flowability testers that the equipment for manufacturing, say medicine tablets from powder, can be designed.

Powder Flow Measurements

Three tests and three properties (measurements) are available in flow measurement devices. There are many brands of testers available. They are available on the net and one only has to contact them for support and service.

The shear cell test – which measures inter-particle friction.

The uniaxial compression test – which measures the powder compressibility.

The wall friction test – which tests the friction between the wall of the powder handling equipment and the particles.

How To Obtain Accurate Results

Match your purchase or inquiry of flow measurement device directly with the process on hand. Let it be fully relevant.

Sensitivity and repeat ability – these facets of the instrument are critical especially the latter. Repeat ability throws up the differences in different samples utilizing the same technique.

Ease of use and short measurement times with greater automation are also factors for consideration.

About the Author

Granutools offering best powder handling equipment, flow measurement device, powder measurement & compressibility index tools. we offer a unique set of complementary instruments.

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Author: William Starke

William Starke

Member since: Apr 15, 2016
Published articles: 15

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