There are hundreds — probably thousands or even millions— of reasons to break apart something that’s big into smaller pieces. From facilitating easier transport of active ingredients to encouraging in-depth exploration (and many other reasons in between), reducing a substance into smaller components often leads to more useful — if not just more plentiful — parts. Across multiple industries, for instance, particle size reduction processes enable manufacturers to create products that look and work better than those made without them. The key, however, is picking the right type of particle size reduction equipment; there are many ways to reduce the size of particles in a substance and, as a result, there are many types of particle size reduction equipment. It’s not always easy to know which type of particle size reduction equipment to use. Here’s what you need to know:
There are Many Ways to Reduce Particle Size
There are many ways to reduce the size of a substance’s particles; you can use molecular forces and/or mechanical forces. Unfortunately, molecular forces can alter the chemical composition of a sample, thus affecting the resulting end product’s functionality. Mechanical forces, however, only alter a sample’s physical structure and, therefore, are more often utilized in particle size reduction equipment. Indeed, at a most basic level, particle size reduction equipment depends on at least one of the following mechanical forces:
- Shear — which is similar to cutting with a pair of scissors
- Impact — which is similar to a collision between two objects
- Cavitation — which is similar to the popping of a bubble
(In addition, high pressure can be used to force apart a substance, as well; we’ll get to that in a minute!)
The Type of Force Used Affects Particle Size Reduction
Specific types of particle size reduction equipment utilize different forces, with each offering their own unique advantages and disadvantages. For example:
- Paddle Blenders utilize impact and shear forces to break apart large samples and are particularly conducive to separating living cells from tissue samples but not applicable when extremely small particles are needed.
- Bead Mills utilize impact and shear forces by adding small beads to a sample and agitating them so that they collide with one another (and also the sample), breaking the sample into smaller pieces. Because small traces of the beads might end up in a sample, these type of particle size reduction equipment is not appropriate in certain situations.
- Rotor Stator Homogenizers utilize shear force to create small (although not nanoscale) particle sizes, but often create a small amount of heat that can degrade a sample.
- Ultrasonic Homogenizers utilize cavitation and impact to create nano particle sizes, but can create a large amount of heat affecting many types of samples.
Only High Pressure Homogenizers Offer The Widest Range of Manufacturing and Scientific Possibilities
While other particle size reduction equipment makes use of only one or possibly two forces, our BEE International high pressure homogenizers utilize shear, impact, cavitation and high pressure to break apart and reduce the size of a sample’s particles. BEE stands for Best Emulsifying Equipment. Furthermore, our patented emulsifying cell (EC) technology permits the complete customization of forces (including their duration and intensity) used during any one manufacturing or laboratory process, which allows manufacturers and scientists alike the ability to achieve specific results as needed, such as nano emulsions; cell lysis; uniform particle reduction; maximum bioavailability; improved and consistent sensorial and biophysical properties and more!
To learn more about what makes BEE International high pressure homogenizers the particle size reduction equipment of choice, please contact BEE International.