Particle Size Reduction: Processes and Products

Posted by Deb Shechter on May 8, 2018 2:30:00 PM

particle size reductionBigger is not always better. For instance, many electronic gadgets that have come out over the past few years have a smaller, more streamlined design. Most people want to lose weight to become smaller. Also, I’m glad pests like spiders and cockroaches are as small as they are.

Multiple industries and manufacturers need to be able to reduce the size of particles to achieve their preferred end-product. It affects a product’s color, taste, chemical reaction, density and more. For example: reduced particle size enables creams and lotions to absorb into the skin more rapidly, which is extremely important in the pharmaceutical and cosmetic industries.

Key benefits of particle size reduction include:

  • Increased dissolution rate

  • Improved drug delivery

  • Cleaning product health and safety

  • Controlled rate of reaction

  • Greater sedimentation stability

  • Consistent product texture and appearance

  • Improved mineral processing 

Preferred Product for Particle Size Reduction

One of the most widely utilized methods for particle size reduction is high-pressure homogenization. It uses mechanical force to break down particles or droplets in a liquid into smaller and more uniform sizes, resulting in a dispersion, which is where fine particles of one substance are scattered throughout another substance. Dispersions can be further classified into solutions, suspensions and colloids, a mixture somewhere between a solution and a suspension.  

Some high-pressure homogenizers can reduce particle size to as small as a single-digit nanometer. Plus, they ensure the composition is equal throughout, and the overall molecular makeup of the sample isn’t compromised.

Selection Criteria

How do you know what homogenizer is best for your company’s specific needs? The first consideration is what type of product you need. Which one you select will vary based on whether you want to use it for a specific product or for more general use. identifying the key product(s) you want produce should help guide you in choosing the most suitable homogenizer.

Once you narrow down the product(s), you’ll want to decide what features and capabilities you want in a homogenizer. Depending on whether your product(s) and process requires mechanical forces (like shear, cavitation or impact), high pressure, temperature change or another parameter altogether, you should identify the technical operations needed to make sure you choose the right machine for your needs.

The BEE International Difference

Unlike a hammer mill which uses only one mechanical force (impact), BEE International’s patented homogenization technology utilizes all available mechanical forces. We synergistically combine and fine-tune all available mechanical forces, including turbulence, cavitation, shear, impact and process intensity, to produce the best possible product for you. In addition, we produce a tight distribution of small, uniform particles every time.

Depending on your product, benefits of our products include a longer shelf life, increased bioavailability, improved sensory characteristics and greater productivity along with lower manufacturing costs due to fewer passes. Our laboratory, pilot and industrial homogenizers all produce reliable and consistent particle size reduction. 

Contact us today to see how we can meet your homogenization needs! To learn more about how to achieve efficient and consistent particle size reduction, download our FREE eBook:

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Suspension vs. Colloid: How Do They Differ?

Posted by Tal Shechter on Dec 20, 2017 11:30:00 AM

suspension vs colloidAs we’ve outlined in recent blogs, homogenization is a process utilized for particle size reduction and works by employing mechanical force to break down particles or droplets in a liquid into smaller and more uniform sizes. The result of homogenization is a dispersion, wherein fine particles of one substance are scattered throughout another substance. Furthermore, dispersions are able to be classified by the sizes of these scattered particles: solutions, suspensions and colloids. In this blog, we’re focusing on the difference between suspension and colloids.

Suspensions

Simply defined as a heterogeneous mixture of two substances in which one is dispersed into the other, suspensions involve particles larger than those found in solutions, typically over 1,000 nm. The bigger particles of a suspension usually settle or separate out of a mixture upon standing or are able to be filtered out, although not through filter paper. Gravity is able to pull the visible particles in a suspension down if undisturbed, and they will stay that way unless being actively mixed. Examples of suspensions include oil and water, dust or soot in air, sand and water and muddy water.

Colloids

Although a heterogeneous mixture of two substances like suspensions, colloids involve particles from 1-1,000 nm that do not separate upon standing and cannot be separated by filtration. The particles in a colloid land in size between those in a solution and a suspension and may be solid, liquid or gas. The two parts in every colloid mixture are its particles and the dispersing medium, and the particles are spread evenly in in the medium, which can also be solid, liquid or gas. Examples of colloids are foams (shaving cream, Styrofoam), gels (gelatin, jelly), emulsions (mayonnaise, lotion), aerosols (fog, insecticide spray, smoke) and sols (shampoo, gemstones).

Even though the particles in a colloid are very small in size, they can be seen through a process called the Tyndall Effect, the effect of light scattering in colloidal dispersion while showing no light in a true solution. This effect is used to determine whether a mixture is a true solution or a colloid.

Colloid mills, like homogenizers, are able to process particle reduction formulations, although each is preferential for certain applications. They are best used for samples comprised of solids immersed in a liquid suspension or a liquid suspended in another liquid because they can enhance the stability and/or reduce the size of suspended particles.

Overview

In summary, following are some of the main differences between a suspension and colloid:

  • Particles in a suspension are usually more than 1,000 nm, while those in a colloid range from 1-1,000 nm.
  • Unlike those in a suspension, particles in a colloid do not separate when sitting still.
  • The particles in a suspension may be separated by filtration unlike those in a colloid.
  • Colloids are able to scatter light, but suspensions cannot transmit light.
  • Particles in a suspension can be seen by the naked eye, but those in a colloid must be viewed using a light microscope.

BEE International: The Clear Choice for High-Pressure Homogenizers

At BEE International, we not only offer a multitude of high-pressure homogenizers to handle almost any task in a laboratory, pilot plant or industrial setting, we help you sort through the technical jargon to find equipment that best addresses your specific needs. Our line of equipment is suitable for virtually every industry and can work in just about any environment, letting you focus on other important projects. To learn more about our technology and products, please contact us today!

If you’re interested in learning more about how you can break down particles in the best way possible, download our free eBook “How to Achieve Efficient & Consistent Particle Size Reduction” today:

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How to Select a Homogenizer for Particle Size Reduction

Posted by Deb Shechter on May 17, 2017 12:30:00 PM

select homogenizer for particle size reductionHomogenization, also known a micronization, or more simply, particle size reduction, is a powerful technique used across a number of growing industries: cosmetic, pharmaceutical, biotech, and even food! The next time you spread mayo on your sandwich, use anti-aging cream, or take medication for your pounding headache, you can thank the powers behind homogenization. Aside from creating useful and effective products, homogenization has other benefits: it creates uniform and consistent products with minimal amounts of effort, it saves money, and it increases overall customer satisfaction. With all of those benefits, it’s no wonder that more and more industries and businesses are looking to invest in a homogenizer of their own.

However, before selecting a homogenizer to meet your particular needs, it can be useful to understand what you should be looking for in a homogenizer. Continue reading to learn more about how to select a homogenizer for particle size reduction.

What type of product do you need?

The first thing to think about is what type of product you are aiming to create. The homogenizer you choose will vary based on whether you want to use it for a specific product or for more general use. The first step in choosing a homogenizer is identifying several key products that you aim to produce using the machine. This will help guide you in the right direction in choosing the most appropriate machine for your needs.

Intended procedure and/or results

Once you have an idea of the product or products that you would like to create, you will be able to select the procedure you intend on using. From quick mixing to the lysing of tissues and other delicate materials, knowing which procedure you will use will determine which features and technical capabilities you will need in a homogenizer.

Technical operations needed

Now that the product type and procedure have been identified, it is necessary to determine the technical operations to look for in a homogenizer. Depending on whether your process requires mechanical forces (like shear, cavitation, or impact), high pressure, temperature change, or another parameter altogether, it is important to identify the technical operations needed to ensure that you choose the right machine for your needs.

We at BEE International offer a number of homogenizers to suit virtually any need. We are excited to help you begin your next big homogenization project. Please contact us today to learn more about the innovative homogenizing equipment that we have to offer.

For more information on how to achieve efficient and consistent particle size reduction, download our FREE eBook:

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Small Particle Sizes: 3 Key Benefits

Posted by David Shechter on Apr 5, 2017 11:30:00 AM

small particle sizef you work in the fields of biotechnology, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, drugs, or food, chances are you have a good idea of what homogenization is. And if that term sounds foreign to you, you may be wondering what the big deal is about homogenization. No matter which of the two categories you fall into, this article will provide useful information to gain more knowledge and insight into this powerful process.

So what is homogenization, exactly? The definition is quite simple: homogenization is the process of reducing the particle size of a product. Whether you are creating pain relieving pills, anti-aging moisturizing cream, or a cold glass of milk, homogenization plays a powerful role in the manufacture of the components that make up these, as well as many other finished goods. While the reduction of particle size may seem like an action with limited benefits, that is just not the case. Continue reading to learn more about the key benefits of small particle sizes.

Greater Product Stability

When manufacturers achieve a tight distribution of particles – a byproduct of successful homogenization – the benefits are endless. A tight distribution of particles allows for greater product stability, which then allows for a longer shelf life, optimized particle characteristics, uniform temperature and reactive qualities, and higher overall product quality. This, in turn, leads to increased sales and increased customer satisfaction.

Manufacturing Efficiency

Small particle sizes also allow manufacturers to build a process that is cost effective and efficient, due to the fact that fewer passes need to occur. In a world of tight budgets and a growing desire for proven ROI within corporations, any and all efficiencies within the manufacturing process are welcomed and desired.

Consistent Results

Finally, reduced particle sizes of particles that comprise finished goods allows manufacturers to achieve consistent, precisely controlled, and repeatable results. The importance of consistent results is far-reaching; consistent results allow processes to be scaled up from a smaller laboratory setting to pilot plant production and even full-scale industrial operations.

BEE International: Homogenizers that provide quality results

If quality results are what you’re looking for, look no further! Our line of homogenizers at BEE International possess all of the features you are looking for at a price that will certainly fall within your budget. By utilizing the powerful forces of turbulence, cavitation, shear, and impact, our homogenizers guarantee results that are repeatable, scalable, and are the highest of quality. To learn more about our homogenizing equipment, please contact us today. We look forward to working with you on your next large project.

For more information on how to achieve efficient and consistent particle size reduction, download our FREE eBook: 

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How the DeBEE 2000 Can Benefit the Manufacturing Process

Posted by Tal Shechter on Mar 23, 2017 12:30:00 PM

DeBEE 2000Homogenization is used in a number of important industries, including cosmetic, food, pharmaceutical, and biotech. This process is more simply known as particle size reduction, and occurs when a particle is made smaller. This simple act has countless benefits: increased quality of texture, taste, and appearance, tissues and particles that are more readily studied in laboratory settings, and lower production costs. With all of these benefits (and many more!) it’s no wonder that more and more industries are looking to get involved in this powerful process by purchasing a homogenizer for their industry.

However, before taking on this task, it is important to understand the options that are available. BEE International is here to help! BEE – short for Best Emulsifying Equipment – stays true to its name with a number of machines that can help with the process of homogenization. Our homogenizers are well suited for virtually any application and just about any setting, from a smaller laboratory or R&D setting, to pilot plants, all the way to large scale manufacturing plants.

One of our more popular laboratory scale models is the DeBEE 2000. What does this powerful piece of equipment do? How can it help in your industry? What benefits and features does it offer? Continue reading to learn the answers to all of those questions and more. 

The DeBEE 2000 is designed to facilitate process development in a laboratory or R&D setting.  This series includes the DeBEE 2000-45-30, DeBEE 2000-45-60, DeBEE 2000-30-60, DeBEE 2000-25-100, and DeBEE 2000-20-120 models. The technology contains a proprietary homogenizing cell that allows for unmatched results in fewer passes. The DeBEE 2000 series is also well suited to produce results that are not just repeatable, but scalable as well. Other features include:

  • Easy to clean
  • Variable operating pressure up to 45,000psi
  • Modular design for lower cost replacement parts
  • PLC control and monitoring for simple operation
  • Constant process pressure for tighter product distribution
  • Ability to control cavitation, pressure, shear, and impact
  • Adjustable back pressure
  • Stainless steel enclosure
  • Dual feed
  • Dual jet
  • Automatic Clean in Place (CIP)

To learn more about the DeBEE 2000, as well as how we at BEE International can help with your next homogenization project, please contact us today. Our free product guide that explains more of the features in detail is available for download here.

For more information on how to achieve efficient and consistent particle size reduction results, download our FREE eBook:

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3 Benefits of Efficient Particle Size Reduction

Posted by David Shechter on Feb 24, 2017 12:30:00 PM

benefits_efficient_particle_reduction.jpgParticle size reduction is a powerful technique that is used in a number of growing manufacturing industries, including pharmaceutical, cosmetic, and biotech. With benefits including a longer shelf life of final product, as well as improved taste, texture, and appearance, it’s no wonder that more and more industries are looking to utilize this incredible process step. However, when choosing the right homogenizer for the job, it is important to understand some of the benefits of efficient particle size reduction. Being armed with this information is the first step in ensuring you are choosing the right equipment for your end goal. Continue reading to learn more about three benefits of efficient particle size reduction.

Higher Quality Products

In countless industries, reduced particle size has significant benefits to manufactured materials. In the chemical industry, for example, reduced particle size allows for smoother surface quality, increased conductivity, increased particle coating during formulations, higher particle packing, and overall increases in high quality product function. These benefits can be seen in a number of finished goods, including adhesives, pigments, ink dispersions, pastes, resin additives, and polymers.

Numerous Health Benefits

In addition to increased quality, efficient particle size reduction not only reflects well on food manufacturers, for instance, but can also result in a number of health benefits to the end consumer. Food that is comprised of smaller particles can result in increased growth in children and teens, as well as decreased overall food intake as a result of satiety.

Increased Bioavailability of Drugs

Finally, efficient particle size reduction can increase the bioavailability – that is, the fraction of an active drug ingredient that gets absorbed into the body – of pharmaceutical drugs. A product’s bioavailability has a direct correlation with efficacy; smaller, consistent particle sizes have increased oral bioavailability, and are thus able to achieve their desired function more effectively. Smaller particles are also more readily dissolved into a solution, thanks to their larger surface areas.

BEE International: High Quality Particle Size Reduction Equipment

No matter what your industry calls for, you can rest assured that BEE International has the right homogenizing equipment for the job. With a number of homogenizers suitable for a variety of settings, including laboratories, research and development labs, pilot plants, and industrial manufacturing zones, we have the right homogenizers for your industry. To learn more about the suite of homogenizers BEE International has to offer, please contact us today. We would love to help you on your journey to efficient particle size reduction.

Download our FREE eBook for even more information on how to achieve efficient and consistent particle size reduction:

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How Does a Homogenizer Work for Efficient Particle Size Reduction?

Posted by David Shechter on Dec 2, 2016 12:30:00 PM

homogenizer for particle size reductionHomogenization, also known as micronization, is the process of reducing the particle size of two insoluble liquids or solids to aid in the process of dispersion and emulsification. The process was initially discovered and refined by Auguste Gaulin in 1900, when he introduced the world’s first homogenizer at the Paris World’s Fair. This early machine pushed a mixture of cream and milk through a set of small tubes to homogenize milk. Since then, homogenization equipment has become much more advanced, although the basic principle and technique of homogenization remains largely the same, utilizing high pressure and force to force liquids through small orifices to aid in emulsion.

All homogenizations result in the creation of a dispersion, where particles of one medium are evenly spread throughout another medium. Dispersions can be further classified into solutions, suspensions, and colloids – a mixture somewhere between a solution and a suspension.  

Homogenization and the creation of dispersions is an important process step in numerous industries. For example, in the world of biotech, which includes the fields of cellular biology and molecular biology, homogenization involves the reduction in size of various types of biological samples, tissues, and cells. While homogenization decreases the particle size, it ensures that the composition is equal throughout and that the overall molecular makeup of the sample is not compromised.

Particle size reduction through homogenization and the creation of dispersions have numerous applications in the fields of pharmaceutical, biotech, cosmetic, chemical, and food. In many industries that require the use of active ingredients, homogenization is a vital process step that reduces active ingredients to a small enough size to ensure a thorough dispersion throughout the medium produced.

The BEE International Advantage

At BEE International, we offer a variety of homogenizers for virtually every industry and every application, from small scale and research & development work, to pilot plants and full-scale production. Our products all produce consistent and reliable particle size reduction as well as the following benefits:

  • High performance technology
  • Powerful experimentation options
  • Easy to clean, use, and maintain, with no disassembly required
  • Equipped with spare parts and tools
  • Maximum operating pressures of up to 45,000 psi (3,100 bar)
  • 100% guaranteed scalability of results
  • Lifetime training for new employees and students

For more information on how our line of homogenizers can best suit your company’s needs, please contact us. Our FREE eBook is also available for download for more information: How to Achieve Efficient & Consistent Particle Size Reduction.

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High Pressure Homogenizer: What to Look for When Deciding on a Model

Posted by David Shechter on Nov 3, 2016 12:30:00 PM

high pressure homogenizerCongratulations on choosing a high pressure homogenizer for your particle size reduction or cell lysis needs! We’ve created the following checklist to help you choose the correct model for your needs:

  • Production or Research & Development?

Whether you need a high pressure homogenizer for R&D experimentation or large production volumes, BEE International has the right equipment for you. Our Nano DeBEE Laboratory Homogenizer is ideal for laboratory use for a broad range of applications including cell disruption, particle size reduction, nano/micro emulsions and dispersions. Our industrial homogenizers provide high yield cell rupture and efficient particle size reduction in fewer passes. Click here to view all of our high pressure homogenizer products.

  • Is it a good fit for my product?

When choosing a high pressure homogenizer, always ensure that it is the right fit for your particular product and manufacturing needs. Take into account the volumes that you will be processing, the frequency of your production runs, and the regulatory requirements associated with manufacturing your product e.g. pasteurization or SCADA.

  • Easy to clean and maintain?

Regulations require certain products to be manufactured on equipment with CIP capabilities. We understand these rigorous industry standards and customer requirements; therefore our pilot plant and industrial homogenizers are all CIP. Contact us to schedule a professional service for your unit or inquire about our annual Preventive Maintenance Agreements.

  • A reliable and specialized company?

BEE International is a reputable company with homogenizers operating in commercial and academic facilities across the globe. We are knowledgeable and experienced in every aspect of high energy mixing in terms of cell lysis and particle size reduction, and we want to share that knowledge and experience with you. We provide training upon or before installation, and also offer additional training at any time further down the line.

  • After-sales support?

We know that a high pressure homogenizer is an expensive piece of equipment and that you want to get your money’s worth out of it. Our technical support team are standing by to help you troubleshoot any small issues or answer your operational questions.

BEE International is your partner in developing new products and improving your existing ones. Click here to learn more about our application support and sample testing program. 

For more information on particle size reduction and how to achieve efficient and consistent results, download our FREE eBook:

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What Is Particle Size Reduction & How Does It Play a Part in Everyday Life?

Posted by Deb Shechter on Oct 3, 2016 12:30:00 PM

particle size reduction refers to the process of adding energy to a material in order to reduce the average particle size. We know that manufacturing industries utilize particle size reduction, but did you know that it happens every day in your own life too?

Let’s begin with your morning coffee. Before you can enjoy a delicious cup of java, you need to grind the coffee beans first. In a coffee grinder, the beans are ground down into much smaller particles, thereby increasing the surface area. We do this so that the water which percolates through the coffee can extract all those delicious, aromatic compounds (as well as the much needed caffeine!)

Next, you get into your car and drive to work. Your car is made predominantly from steel, which is made from iron ore mined from the ground. One of the first steps in this process, after removing the rocks from the earth, is comminution (size reduction) so that the valuable materials can be separated out.

Large Pieces + Energy = Smaller Pieces  

At lunchtime, you go down to the cafeteria and order a salad. Luckily for you, the chef knows a thing or two about particle size reduction. If not, you would have received an entire head of lettuce on your plate, along with a whole tomato and cucumber!

When you’re done, you toss your used napkin into the trash. Waste management companies make use of particle size reduction equipment like shredders and compactors to break down or crush waste into smaller pieces.

Later when you head home, you make yourself a sandwich. Your bread was baked with flour, which was made (or milled) by crushing the grain into smaller pieces. Lastly, just before bed, you wash your face and apply your face cream, which has probably been manufactured using a homogenizer.

Homogenization, you guessed it, is a kind of particle size reduction. It uses mechanical force to break down particles or droplets in a liquid into smaller and more uniform sizes. Once the face cream has been homogenized, it is less likely to separate out, thereby improving the aesthetic and prolonging the shelf life.

Interested in learning more about particle size reduction and how to make the process more efficient? Contact us, and download our free eBook: “How to Achieve Efficient & Consistent Particle Size Reduction.”

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Why Scalability Matters for Particle Size Reduction Equipment

Posted by Deb Shechter on Sep 21, 2016 12:30:00 PM

scalability-in-particle-size-reduction-equipment.jpgScalability in Process Manufacturing

Process manufacturing is the branch of manufacturing associated with ingredients or raw materials, formulas, and manufacturing recipes. This kind of manufacturing is common in the food, beverage, chemical, pharmaceutical, consumer packaged goods, and biotechnology industries.

Scalability is a crucial element in process manufacturing, as production processes must be proportionally adjustable to adapt to production needs. In order to successfully progress from the laboratory to large-scale production, products should be developed, from day one, with scalability in mind. R&D scientists should work together with production, forecasting, supply chain, and procurement staff in order to develop a product that can be successfully and profitably manufactured.

Scalable product development also makes for a shorter transition time between the product research and launch phases; which is key in the highly competitive spaces like the pharmaceutical, food and cosmetic industries.  

Scalability in Particle Size Reduction Equipment

All too often, problems arise when scaling up laboratory processes that require particle size reduction equipment. If, for example, your formulation was developed using a bench-top French press, it will yield very different results when manufactured on an industrial standard homogenizer. Complications also inevitably arise when scaling up high-viscosity liquids, for example, as air is often entrapped during the mixing phase, resulting in false volumes.

The laboratory process should essentially be a scaled-down version of the commercial process, which should in turn ensure the chemical and physical integrity of the product. It is therefore incredibly important to have compatible equipment in your laboratory, pilot plant, and on the production floor; so that results that are attained in the laboratory can be repeated on a larger scale.   

DeBEE High Pressure Homogenizers: Scalable Results for Commercially Viable Products

At BEE International, our high pressure homogenizers produce consistent and scalable results, often replacing other types of equipment to improve performance and to save manufacturing time and costs. All of our equipment boasts a proven linear scale-up from the laboratory, to the pilot plant, and up to production volumes. Our unique modular technology allows for tighter distribution of smaller particles, maximum particle size reduction in fewer passes, and increased manufacturing efficiency and reduced cost.

Interested in particle size reduction? Download our free eBook How to Achieve Efficient & Consistent Particle Size Reduction” or contact us to discuss your particle size reduction equipment needs.

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