06/23/2004 • Mechanical process technology • Systems and Components

Powder mixer for standard drums

Complex mixer requirements

Manufacturers of make-up powder have hundreds of different recipes that often consist of just as many individual components. Many of these substances are difficult to handle, have poor flow characteristics, generate dust, are extremely fine and/or have intense colour. Furthermore, they are packed in a wide range of containers. Some are delivered in sacks, others in bigbags. Most products are delivered in cartons, bags, cans or drums.

The wide range of components and their packaging creates significant logistical challenges for the manufacturers of cosmetics products.

The documentation requirements, not least for quality control reasons, are just as complex as the logistics. Cosmetics are applied to the skin and are therefore subject to the GMP requirements.

Solution approach:

amixon GmbH from Paderborn can offer an interesting solution.

The different materials are stored in shelves and on pallets to the left and right of an aisle. A member of staff moves a standard stainless steel drum along the aisle and collects the individual components according to a charging list. The operator uses a manual lift truck that is equipped with precision scales and carries a standard stainless steel drum. The individual materials are identified with a bar code scanner. Once the correct quantity of a particular material has been added, this is acknowledged. After the last component has been added, a protocol is printed. The data record is saved or transmitted via radio signal to the process control centre.

A data record contains the

order no.,
name of the customer,
ID of the operator,
number and
quantity of components.

The protocol sheet is inserted in a pouch attached to the drum. The airtight drum is then parked or directly connected to the precision mixer. The mixer will automatically load the contents of the drum.

All components have to be mixed ideally and precisely. To achieve this, three-dimensional forced mixing is used. A helical blade mixing tool conveys the materials upwards at the periphery of the mixing chamber and makes them come down again in the centre of the mixing chamber. The tilt of the mixing chamber supports the cross flow process. Ideal mixing qualities are achieved after approx. 2 to 4 minutes. If individual materials are agglomerated or agglutinated, a multi-stage cutting rotor can be activated.

The helical band mixing tool is designed to achieve complete mixture after approximately 4 turns. This ensures that, after 3 to 4 minutes, all components have passed the cutting rotor several times.

Sometimes, liquid components such as emulsions or oils are used in the recipes. These are sprayed in an advantageous manner into the working area covered by the cutting rotor.

Once the mixing process is complete, the mixing chamber returns to its original position. The mixed materials flow back into the drum. A vibrator can be used to support the flow process. The drum is positioned on the manual lift truck, closed with a lid and marked as "mixed". At this stage, some producers take a sample for the purpose of analysis during production or as a reference sample.

The mixer can have different degrees of automation, from simple preselection of a mixing time to complete storage of various mixing programmes in a PLC with up to 20 different parameters. In the latter case, the batch number is read via a barcode scanner, and the mixing process is started at the push of a button. Subsequently, the performed process data are stored in a process control centre.

In addition to the reference sample, the complete weighing data and the process data are available in electronic form for quality control purposes.

The drum containing the mixed goods is now fitted with a dosing funnel, turned over and connected to a filling station. This process can be carried out without physical effort and without generating dust.

Exemplary ergonomics

All process data are recorded automatically. To all intents and purposes, manipulation is no longer possible at this stage.

Strenuous, physically demanding pouring processes are handled by the mixer itself. The whole process is almost completely dust-free.

Simple and safe cleaning: Dry or wet cleaning is used depending on requirements. An automatic cleaning station is available for wet cleaning. If hot water is used, the mixer will dry very quickly and can immediately be used again.

Clear process sequence

A particularly benefit is the simple and safe production sequence. Production occurs in a single horizontal plane. The complete process is very clear, extremely space-saving and safe. Further automation steps can be implemented at a later stage. For example, the collection of individual components can be automated using a special device.

Final remark about amixon

The Paderborn-based company amixon GmbH produces mixers with a wide vertical range of manufacture. If required, amixon can demonstrate test mixers in the company's laboratory using your materials. Optimum results are assured in advance.
If the quantity of materials to be handled increases at a later stage to such an extent that 200 litre standard drums appear too small, a container mixer may be used. Container mixers are available with a useful capacity of to 2000 litres.

This product information
is expired!

Use our search-function for current products ...
gradient arrows

amixon GmbH

Halberstädter Straße 55
33106 Paderborn

Phone: +49 (0) 5251/ 688888- 0
Fax: +49 (0) 5251/ 688888- 999