Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Spray drying the precision particle under the virtual magnifying glass

06.05.2015

Spray drying is a common manufacturing process, used in the production of ceramic granulate for technical components or dental prostheses as well as dissolvable medicinal substances, food additives and in the processing of milk into powder. Using computer simulation methodology developed by scientists at the Fraunhofer Institute for Mechanics of Materials IWM, a more comprehensible understanding can now be gained of the behavior of particles in solvent during the spray drying process. This allows powder and granulate manufacturers to specifically adjust the properties of their products while reducing waste.

Previously, it was unusual for granule and powder producers to use granulation simulations to improve their products. For new product development or process optimization, manufacturers relied on trial and error.


Spray dried granules: Depending on the choice of process and suspension parameters, the simulation can generate dense (left) or porous or hollow (right) granulate.

© Fraunhofer Institute for Mechanics of Materials IWM

Spray drying is, however, influenced by many process parameters as well as the material behavior of the fluid and dissolved particles. Experts at the Fraunhofer IWM have now developed a new simulation method: coupled particle flow simulation shows the interaction between the particles and suspension. "The flow of the various particle sizes as well as their location in the liquid are incorporated“, explains Fraunhofer IWM simulation expert Thomas Breinlinger.

"For example, we can detect if there is an increase of smaller particles outside while the larger particles are more likely to be found inside or how they move in the liquid throughout the process.“ This new numerical simulation model combines long-established Fraunhofer IWM particle flow simulations, i.e., CFD (Computational Fluid Dynamics) and DEM (Discrete Element Method).

The spray drying simulation technology is already successfully being deployed with ceramic granules, but can also be implemented for powder and granulate in the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, nanotechnology and food industries. Additionally, manufacturers of drying systems benefit from the simulation by gaining a better grasp of the origin and structure of the granular materials.

Increased economic efficiency through simulations and modeling

Using the new simulation method, granulate manufacturers better understand how their product is created and what most affects granule quality. As a result, it becomes clear which of the modeled flow parameters are actually relevant for improving product quality or to aid in the resolution of specific problems.

By providing the possibility for targeted granulate and powder manufacturers to produce a special morphology, the process simulation and modeling can also aid in the reduction of development costs. In a project sponsored by the DFG (German Research Foundation), scientists at the Fraunhofer IWM have conducted simulations on various ceramic suspensions to discover their specific differences regarding the resulting granules.

"We have combined several primary particles in the suspension to be represented by a single particle in our simulation," states Breinlinger, who goes on to say that the particles in the simulation have been slightly enlarged, to facilitate better and more predictable calculations and descriptions. "Depending on whether the primary particles in the suspension have agglomerated rather than dispersed, the particles in the simulation maintain different properties, which aid in mapping the interaction of the primary particles," he explains.

This means that the influence of the interaction of microscopically small primary particles on the formation of granular materials can be directly described, without the need for further simulations. As a basis for his work, the Fraunhofer scientists rely on their many years of experience in materials modeling and simulation, in particle flow simulation, in the development of simulation codes and corresponding methods, as well as on the profound understanding of materials and material systems established at the Fraunhofer IWM.

Implementing the simulation to the technical process of spray drying

The materials specialists are now seeking an industrial partner with whom they can conduct and refine spray drying process simulations. Currently under consideration is the energy potential between particles in an approximated form as well as the calculation of a "smeared" suspension behavior. In the future they plan still further in-depth simulations of these parameters so as to validate concrete applications. "The tool already works very well and we look forward to continuing to refine and implement it for large scale commercial use" concludes Breinlinger.

Weitere Informationen:

http://www.en.iwm.fraunhofer.de/press-events-publications/details/id/1011/ - Press release online -
http://www.en.iwm.fraunhofer.de/business-units/manufacturing-processes/powder-te... - Fraunhofer IWM: Powder Technology, Fluid Dynamics -

Thomas Götz | Fraunhofer-Institut für Werkstoffmechanik IWM

Further reports about: Fluid IWM drying explains glass granular materials granule granules materials powder

More articles from Process Engineering:

nachricht Quick, Precise, but not Cold
17.05.2017 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Lasertechnik ILT

nachricht A laser for divers
03.05.2017 | Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V.

All articles from Process Engineering >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Can we see monkeys from space? Emerging technologies to map biodiversity

An international team of scientists has proposed a new multi-disciplinary approach in which an array of new technologies will allow us to map biodiversity and the risks that wildlife is facing at the scale of whole landscapes. The findings are published in Nature Ecology and Evolution. This international research is led by the Kunming Institute of Zoology from China, University of East Anglia, University of Leicester and the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research.

Using a combination of satellite and ground data, the team proposes that it is now possible to map biodiversity with an accuracy that has not been previously...

Im Focus: Climate satellite: Tracking methane with robust laser technology

Heatwaves in the Arctic, longer periods of vegetation in Europe, severe floods in West Africa – starting in 2021, scientists want to explore the emissions of the greenhouse gas methane with the German-French satellite MERLIN. This is made possible by a new robust laser system of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen, which achieves unprecedented measurement accuracy.

Methane is primarily the result of the decomposition of organic matter. The gas has a 25 times greater warming potential than carbon dioxide, but is not as...

Im Focus: How protons move through a fuel cell

Hydrogen is regarded as the energy source of the future: It is produced with solar power and can be used to generate heat and electricity in fuel cells. Empa researchers have now succeeded in decoding the movement of hydrogen ions in crystals – a key step towards more efficient energy conversion in the hydrogen industry of tomorrow.

As charge carriers, electrons and ions play the leading role in electrochemical energy storage devices and converters such as batteries and fuel cells. Proton...

Im Focus: A unique data centre for cosmological simulations

Scientists from the Excellence Cluster Universe at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich have establised "Cosmowebportal", a unique data centre for cosmological simulations located at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. The complete results of a series of large hydrodynamical cosmological simulations are available, with data volumes typically exceeding several hundred terabytes. Scientists worldwide can interactively explore these complex simulations via a web interface and directly access the results.

With current telescopes, scientists can observe our Universe’s galaxies and galaxy clusters and their distribution along an invisible cosmic web. From the...

Im Focus: Scientists develop molecular thermometer for contactless measurement using infrared light

Temperature measurements possible even on the smallest scale / Molecular ruby for use in material sciences, biology, and medicine

Chemists at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) in cooperation with researchers of the German Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (BAM)...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Plants are networkers

19.06.2017 | Event News

Digital Survival Training for Executives

13.06.2017 | Event News

Global Learning Council Summit 2017

13.06.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Quantum thermometer or optical refrigerator?

23.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

A 100-year-old physics problem has been solved at EPFL

23.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Equipping form with function

23.06.2017 | Information Technology

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>