The term “agitator” refers to a device that uses a revolving impeller and shaft to impart mechanical energy to shake or agitate a liquid or combination of liquids. The chemical, pharmaceutical, food, grease, metal extraction, paint, adhesive, water, and cosmetic sectors employ agitators extensively for various tasks. Read More…
AgitatorsAgitators are industrial mixers that typically mix substances with low viscosities in low-shear applications. Agitators are basically process aids because their main functions, including producing flow in a vessel and ensuring in-tank uniformity, are secondary to the whole process.
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An agitator is mostly used in plants for the following reasons:
To ensure appropriate liquid mixing
To encourage chemical reactions within the apparatus
To boost heat transfer when cooling or heating
To maintain uniform liquid bulk while being stored
To spread immiscible liquids about
To maintain the mixture of the product until it is used
To form miscible solutions
To cause some solids to dissolve in a liquid
Types of Agitators
Agitators come in a variety of types, some appropriate for industrial use. There are several common types of agitators:
Anchor type agitators
Propeller type agitators
Blade type agitators
Turbine type agitators
These have paddle-shaped blades, the most fundamental kind. Due to their restricted capabilities, they are utilized primarily for laminar flow fluids with minimal shearing requirements. They can transport ingredients from one end of the vessel to the other and have an equal number of forward and reverse paddles.
Applications of Paddle Agitators
Mixing slurry during the crystallization step of the supersaturated cooling process
Advantages of Paddle Agitators
Paddle agitators can be used for heavy-duty applications, including slurry mixing and slow operation.
Two to four blades make these agitators more effective.
Disadvantages of Paddle Agitators
These agitators consumes much electrical energy.
They are ineffective at blending.
Sawtooth Paddle Agitators are a modified form of paddle agitators. These agitators have saw teeth or notches in their front puddles.
Anchor Agitators: Anchor agitators are frequently employed to mix non-Newtonian and highly viscous fluids. Their name refers to the impeller's shape, similar to an anchor. Typically, they are installed in tanks and other vessels with rounded or conical bottoms. The pharmaceutical industry makes extensive use of anchor agitators. Anchor agitators have the benefit of allowing for high heat transfer rates.
Propeller Agitators: Propeller agitators are excellent choices for materials with low viscosities. Propeller-type agitators running at medium to high speeds make it simple to accomplish tasks like homogenization, suspension, and dispersion. These axial flow agitators are perfect for solid-in-liquid suspensions because they stop solid particles from depositing. In addition, propeller agitators have the benefit of being able to dry and press materials while also handling corrosive materials with a glass lining. However, using propeller agitators has the drawback of requiring high speed, which will cost more money for electric motors.
Blade Type Agitators: These are appropriate for fluids with low and medium viscosities. Axial-type agitators have blades.
Turbine Agitators: They are employed for the rapid emulsification and dispersion of fluids. Many liquids, gas reactions, and extraction processes use turbine agitators. Turbine agitators have excellent mixing performance over different kinds of viscosities. An axial input and a radial output are features of turbine agitators. While working, they combine rotation and centrifugal force. As a result, turbine agitators benefit from strong radial flow, which is beneficial for dispersion operation.
Helical Agitators: They are called helical agitators because the blades are arranged in a helix-like pattern. Helical agitators are axial flow agitators that produce violent motion inside the vessel or tank and appear like threaded screws. This agitator is popular in the paint and polymer industries since it can effectively handle liquids with viscoelasticity.
Components of an Agitator
An agitator typically consists of these three elements:
A shaft with an impeller and blades for the impeller
A motor with the possibility of a gearbox
A mechanical seal
The impeller of the agitator rotates to perform mixing because its shaft is attached to the motor and gearbox. The volume of liquid inside the tank or vessel determines how many impellers are needed. Typically, each impeller has 2 to 6 blades. Magnetic-driven agitators are also an option in cases where a hermetic seal is employed in place of a mechanical seal.
Different types of impellers can be used in agitators, including:
Standard or wide blade hydrofoils
Straight blade or pitched blade turbines
Retreat curved impellers
Gas dispersion impellers
Rushton turbine impellers
Sawtooth disk impellers
Selection Criteria of Industrial Agitators
The choice of agitators for a given application depends on several variables, including:
The mixture phase (single-phase or multiphase)
The bulk's viscosity
The precise function needed (blending, dissolving, dispersion, heat exchange, chemical reaction, crystallization, emulsification, suspension, etc.)
The cycle of mixing (batch size, the time required for agitation, material addition sequence, etc.)
characteristics of the components to be combined
Viscosities of the initial ingredients and the end product
Solids' solubility and the used concentration
Desired results of the process
Corrosive or explosive qualities
Calculation procedures for the number of Agitators
The shaft may be attached to more than one agitator. The equation below can be used to determine the number of agitators and the distance between two agitators:
Number of Agitators = (Maximum liquid height X Specific gravity)/Diameter of the Vessel.
The gap between two Agitators=Liquid Height/(Number of Impellers-0.5).
Choosing the Right Agitator Supplier
To ensure you have the most beneficial outcome when purchasing agitators from an agitator supplier, it is important to compare several companies using our directory of agitator suppliers. Each agitator supplier has a business profile page highlighting their areas of experience and capabilities, along with a contact form to directly communicate with the supplier for more information or request a quote. Review each agitator business website using our patented website previewer to quickly learn what each company specializes in. Then, use our simple RFQ form to contact multiple agitator companies with the same form.
Agitators Informational Video
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