Bernard Lab:  Insights into Mixing Processes and Equipment

November 13, 2023
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As explained in the article “The Types of Mixing Process and Equipment,” the chemical industry relies on various mixing processes to produce a wide range of products. Understanding these processes is vital for achieving desired outcomes in chemical manufacturing.

Liquid with Liquid Mixing One of the most common mixing types is liquid-with-liquid mixing, which plays a crucial role in various chemical operations. This process involves combining two or more liquids, sometimes with or without solids, to create specific mixtures. The primary equipment used for this purpose includes propellers or turbines in tanks. These agitators facilitate efficient mixing and are particularly useful when dealing with liquids of different types or viscosity.

Typically, vertical tanks with agitators are employed for liquid-with-liquid mixing. The tank’s height is designed to be 1.5 to 2 times its diameter, with the impeller’s diameter typically being one-third of the tank diameter. This setup ensures effective mixing and distribution of liquids.

Agitation vs. Mixing It’s important to distinguish between agitation and mixing. While agitation induces a circulatory motion within a tank or vessel, mixing involves the random distribution of two or more initially separate phases into one another. Liquids are agitated for several purposes, including:

  • Blending miscible liquids.
  • Dispersion of gases in liquids.
  • Suspension of solid particles in liquids to achieve uniformity for mass transfer and chemical reactions.
  • Contacting immiscible liquids.
  • Enhancing heat transfer between the jacket and the liquid.

Gases with Liquid in Mixing Mixing gases with liquids requires specialized equipment. Typically, this is accomplished by introducing gas under a turbine located near the bottom of a cylindrical vessel or reactor. The equipment used for this purpose includes baffled vertical tanks with flat-blade turbine agitators. The turbine’s diameter is generally one-third of the tank diameter, and the liquid pool’s depth matches the tank diameter.

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Photo and article with all rights reserved, courtesy of chemicalslearning.com.