Tumbler mixer

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Tumbler mixer is a high performance device or equipment which mixes or homogenizes the powders, solids, liquids, suspensions and other different particles size materials.

Tumbler mill

HISTORY

Paul Schatz was a German born sculptor, inventor and mathematician. Paul Schatz discovered in 1929 that the Platonic solids could be inverted. In his invention he shows that the invertible Cube elaborated in accordance with the respective laws, its specific and rhythmic mobility. Paul Schatz and Oloid worked together for the device to generate as a tumbling motion.

DECRIPITION

Tumblers provide "gentle" blending as material tumbles about a horizontal axis in an enclosed rotating unit. They come in many shapes, such as cubes, cones, Y- and V-shaped, such as the tumbler shown here

BASIC PARTS, CONSTRUCTION, PRINCIPLE AND WORKING OF TUMBLER MIXER

Basic parts

  • It consists of metallic vessels in which the powders are mixed.
  • It consists of a electric motor for the rotation of the vessel.
  • It consists of baffles which are helpful in the mixing of the powders.

Construction

  • A tumbler consists of a metallic enclosed vessel rotated on its axis which causes the particles to mix or tumble over each other onto the mixture surface.
  • The mixing is done in the vessel by the baffles which are present in the metallic vessel.
  • To achieve the fast blending the ingredients are loaded top to bottom instead of side to side.
  • It is simple and robust and very reliable. It is made up of carbon steel or stainless steel. The mixed powder is discharge through butterfly or swivel gate or pinch valve.
  • It has a shaft which is present in 2 parts or crossing the vessel.
  • The mixing of the powders can be achieved by slow rotation either manually or with the help of the electric motor. 3

Principle
the tumbler mixer mainly works on the principle of high mixing function and uniform mixing.

The mixing baffles and the vessel which is made of stainless which are polished internally and externally are used in the mixing function. This machine has uniform mixing, beautiful appearance and wide applications. 1,2

Working

  • The feed is moved into the vessel by the hopper present o the top of the vessel.
  • To achieve the fast blending the ingredients are loaded top to bottom instead of side to side.
  • The metallic vessel which rotates either manually or with the help of the electric motor.
  • In the rotation of the vessel the ingredients come over one another and the function of mixing takes place.
  • For the mixing of the large bulk powders, the mixing of the powders is done in the vessel of a suitable design along with the baffles which gives a thorough mixing.
  • The rotation of the vessel should be slow so that the powder does not remains stationary against the side of the vessel held by the centrifugal force but lifted by baffles and falls over continuously.
  • Tumblers typically operate at speeds of 5-25 rpm and have capacities of 0.5 - 200 ft3. They can be filled to about 75% of their maximum capacity. 2,3

The most recent technology in tumble mixing is in bin blending. In bin blending allows for ingredients to be loaded, tumble-blended, then stored or transported all in the same container. The advantages of this technology are the elimination of a transfer step from blender to container and the elimination of a cleaning step between different batches. Since the process is all occurring within one container, forces that could potentially cause segregation of the mixture are also greatly reduced.

Types

The tumbler mixer is divided into two types based on the rotation or working of the vessel.

These are as follows: 3

  1. Manual tumbler mixer
  2. Automatic tumbler mixer

Manual tumbler mixer

It consists of the metallic vessel which is made up of stainless steel.

The rotation of the vessel takes place manually without the power use, so that by the slow rotation of the vessel the mixing of the powders take place by avoiding of sticking of the powders to the walls of the vessel.

Automatic tumbler mixer

It also consists of the metallic vessel which is made up of stainless steel.

The rotation of the vessel takes place automatically with the power use, so that by the slow rotation of the vessel the mixing of the powders take place by avoiding of sticking of the powders to the walls of the vessel. The baffles which are present in the vessel lifts the powder and falls over continuously.

Different shapes of tumbler mixer

The tumbler mixers are made of stainless steel and has of different designs such as 3

  1. Cubical shape
  2. V shape
  3. Y shape
  4. Cylindrical shape
  5. Double cone shape

Cubical shape tumbler mixer

A tumbler consists of a totally enclosed cubical vessel.

It consists of horizontal shaft rotated about an axis causing the particles within the mixer to tumble over each other onto the mixture surface. To achieve a fast blending time ingredients are typically loaded top to bottom instead of side to side.

Cubical shape tumbler mixer

V shape tumbler mixer

A tumbler consists of a totally enclosed V shaped vessel.

It consists of horizontal shaft rotated about an axis causing the particles within the mixer to tumble over each other onto the mixture surface.

V shaped tumbler mixer

Y shape tumbler mixer

A tumbler consists of a totally enclosed Y shaped vessel.

Tumblers provide gentle blending as material tumbles about a horizontal axis in an enclosed rotating unit.

Y shaped tumbler mixer

Cylindrical shape tumbler mixer

A tumbler consists of a totally enclosed cylindrical shaped vessel.

The mixing of the powder takes place within the cylindrical vessel by rotating on its axis.

Cylindrical tumbler mixer

Double cone shape tumbler mixer

A tumbler consists of a totally enclosed double cone shaped vessel.

The mixing of the powder takes place within the cone shaped vessel by rotating on its axis.

Tumblers are used in the mixing of free flowing powders and pastes.

Double cone shape tumbler mixer

PHARMACEUTICAL APPLCATIONS

It has wide variety of pharmaceutical applications as follows 1

Pharmaceutical manufacturing of drugs and active pharmaceutical ingredients

The tumbler mixer is used mostly because they perform perfect uniform blend of ingredients for a wide range of pharmaceutical drugs and APIs. The output obtained by these types of mixer is about 20L are more.

Both manual and electric tumbler mixer are widely used to achieve reliable and reproducible formulation of custom or OTC drug products.

Compounding & Compacting Compounding pharmacies, medical doctors, and hospitals uses the tumbler mixer for the best product output in pharmaceutical industries.

Formulation development

Tumbler mixer uses the kinematics principle which is known as the Paul Schatz Principle.

This allows for great scale up properties and easily replicated results for development in manufacturing.

Quality assurance / quality control and sample preparation

After obtaining the prepared sample product it is moved it to the laboratory for testing.

Tumbler mixers shows perfect mixtures of one or more samples at the same time and stores in containers, vials etc

Materials manufactured in the tumbler mixer includes:

Medical Devices and Implants

  • Batteries for active implants (such as pacemakers)
  • Dental Implants and other bio-ceramic dental products
  • Surgical implants (such as ceramic hip and knee joints)

Consumer Care & Cosmetic Products

  • Skin cosmetics
  • Natural cosmetics
  • Polymers used for contact lenses
  • Other personal care products
  • Diamond, CBN, and solid carbide tools (used for grinding of extremely hard metallic or crystal materials)
  • Industrial Biotech and Surface Biotechnology Products

Coatings & Colors

  • Surface protection coatings for cars, planes, and spaceships
  • Conductors and insulation layers for electronic components
  • Sensitive ink for printing of banknotes
  • Specialty ink for industrial toners and imaging devices
  • Fuel Pellets
  • Nano materials
  • Tumbling mixer is suitable for gentle blending of dense powder and granules with different ratios.
  • It used for intensive mixing of powder.
  • Used specially in designing of chemical, pharmaceutical or lab application (dye stuff, plastics, food etc)
  • The machine is used for mixing of dry granulate material in pharmaceutical, food-stuff, chemical and other industries.

OTHER APPLICATIONS

Manufacturing of Alloys

Metallic powders of different specific weights, sizes, or shapes can be blended to perfect uniformity in the tumbler. It is used to homogenize alloys containing coarse tungsten / tungsten carbide, nickel, palladium, platinum, copper, iron, steel, sintered metals, precious metals, carbon, ceramics, and other metallic powders.

The tumbler is used for passivation and surface treatment of metallic, ore, ceramic, or glass raw materials. Beads or other grinding materials are added to the container together with the untreated product and the ingredients are mixed until desired smoothness or roundness has been achieved.

Quality Assurance / Quality Control and Sample Preparation

The number of samples need to be homogenized is used for furthur analysis. Tumbler mixer can mix any number of powders with different specific weights, sizes, or shapes to perfect uniformity in a very short time.

Some of the products mixed in chemical and petrochemical industries include:

  • Plastics and polymers
  • Insoluble sulfur for car tires
  • Polymers used for pharmaceutical- or food- grade fluid connectors and hoses
  • Cement and other construction materials enhancers
  • High-performance glass products
  • Products derived from powders dissolved in gel or other oily and viscous substances

Food and Nutritional Products

Used for perfectly and hygienically mix food products or nutritional supplements. Applications include the mixing of:

  • Spices
  • Sugar beads
  • Lactose powder
  • Nutritional supplements and functional food ingredients
  • Herbs
  • Protein powder
  • Lactic acid bacteria and yeast as starter cultures for cheese, wine, beer, or other fermented products

Alternative Medicine / Homeopathy

The tumbler mixer is used by many companies in the field of alternative medicine which are manufacturing a variety of products including:

  • Herbal products
  • Homeopathic medicine for humans and animals
  • Plant-derived medicine and therapeutic roots
  • Natural cosmetics
  • Homeopathic fertilizer for plants

It is also used in mixing some of the prepared materials

  • Mixing soil samples to determine average pollution and contamination levels
  • Mixing grain, corn, or flour samples from a large bulk to determine acceptability for use in food products
  • Sample preparation and analysis of pharmaceutical products to ensure patient safety
  • Homogenizing samples of metallic powders prior to further processing

ADVANTAGES

  • Large volumes can be handled.
  • Shows greater production flexibility.
  • Easy of cleaning.
  • Wear on equipment is little.
  • Delicate particles can be mixed gently.2
  • Very goor or High quality control is possible.
  • Sticking of the powder particles can be avoided to the walls of the tumbler vessel.

DISADVANTAGES

  • Agglomerates cannot be break up by this tumbler mixer.
  • Cohesive mixtures cannot be handled
  • Continuous blending process cannot be adapted2

REFERENCE

  1. http://www.bioengineering-inc.com/inversina_tumbler_mixer/inversina_tumbler.html
  2. http://encyclopedia.che.engin.umich.edu/Pages/MaterialsHandling/Mixers/Mixers.html
  3. Mehta RM, Pharmaceutics-I: Mixing and Homogenisation (1996), Page no: 112-113.

About the Author

Saraswathi.B's picture
Author: Saraswathi.B

Assistant Professor in St. johns college of pharmacy

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