REDwire Understanding the impact of inaccurate particle size analysis

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Not knowing or controlling the particle size of a material can affect the quality of a product, the safety of the process, and the success of the company.

Knowledge of particle size and the size distribution of a powder should be a prerequisite for production and processing operations; however, many operators and companies don’t know the particle size of the material they are working with, or how to test for it, which can have a major impact on a company’s bottom line. In fact, not knowing or controlling the particle size of a material can affect the quality of a product, the safety of the production process, and the overall success of the company.

This topic was explored recently in a webinar hosted by Hosokawa Micron Powder Systems.

 

The impact  

If particle size and particle size distribution are not adequately controlled, there are many physical dangers associated with this. For example, dust masks only protect operators from particles of a certain size or larger. If operators are unaware of particle size, and they grind the particles too finely, they will end up breathing in dust. And, if it’s a toxic substance they’re grinding, breathing this in can result in long-term health issues or, worse, death. Another physical danger is explosivity, causing damage to the equipment, facility and major injuries to the operators.

Particle size also plays a major role in product quality, as it impacts the mechanical strength, performance, efficiency and economical properties of the finished product, as well as the colour or appearance of the material. In the cement industry, for example, if cement is not the right particle size, air pockets create product flaws, like cracks, which can be a safety issue. And, in the food industry, particle size affects the look and even the flavour of the food.

There is also a financial cost associated with inaccurate particle size. High rejection rates due to inaccurate particle size result in production losses, product waste and added maintenance costs. And there is also the costs associated with the previously mentioned physical dangers — paid time off, hospital costs, etc.

The solution

Hosokawa Micron Powder Systems’ Mikro Air Jet Sieve MAJSx is a highly accurate and reliable particle size analyzer designed for identifying the particle size distribution of dry powder ranging from 20 to 4,750 µm. Available in Canada from Firing Industries, this unit features an integrated analysis computer with touchscreen controls, as well as user-friendly software with step-by-step instructions.

To learn more about the MAJSx particle size analyzer, contact Firing Industries’ application-sales engineers at ddubuc@firing.com or (877) 688-0974.

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