What is Emulsification?
Emulsifying is the process step of mixing two or more normally unmixable or unblendable liquid phases in an overall product system or formulation. Emulsification is widely used in industry applications involving chemical processing, liquid pharmaceutical products and food & beverage processing. While a range of emulsifying mixer designs can be used to produce emulsions, such as stirred vessels/agitators, static mixers and homogenizers, rotor-stator mixers are particularly well suited for emulsifying (especially in the macro-emulsion droplet size range).
The Application Challenge
Often, emulsions do not persist in the emulsified stage for a satisfactory length of time — they revert into the original phases comprising the emulsion. For an emulsion to remain stable, sufficient energy input is required. Generally, the finer the droplets produced, the more stable the emulsion.
High shear mixing plays a controlling role in emulsification by breaking down droplets while simultaneously limiting the re-combining of droplets during processing. It also improves the suspension characteristics of the product.
If an existing emulsion requires increased stability, shearing the emulsion further decreases the droplet size even more; this process of homogenization results in smaller and more uniform droplet size. However, this can lead to subsequent processing using a high-pressure homogenizer, which adds to the cost of production.
The Quadro® Solution
Several Quadro® Liquids products are capable of creating emulsions. Quadro®’s ShearFX inline mixer is a cost-competitive solution for applications requiring both pumping capacity and shear energy. The ShearFX technology extends the use of shear pumps into applications involving simple emulsions.
The Quadro Ytron® Z Emulsifier is an inline rotor-stator mixer that delivers unparalleled consistency and control of high shear immiscible phase emulsifying/homogenizing. The Z Emulsifier is designed to reduce bypassing in macro-emulsion processing, homogenization and simple emulsions.
Does your application require a very small (i.e., micro-level) particle size? The Quadro® HV-Emulsifier provides more process shear energy than a conventional rotor-stator mill. The HV-Emulsifier produces submicron emulsions without the subsequent processing of a high pressure homogenizer, significantly lowering costs when compared to homogenizers or media mills for processing submicron emulsions or suspension micronization.