The continuous fluidised bed plants are especially used where high efficiency is required by reducing the operating and production costs. Depending on the size of the plant, e.g. 200, 2.000 or more kilograms per hour pass through the entire process with one or more functionalities such as drying, agglomeration, spray granulation, coating or micro-encapsulation.
Optimum Heat and Mass Transfer
In our continuous fluidised bed system, the input product is proportioned into the apparatus on the front side e.g. via a differential proportioning weather with downstream double flap system. From below, air is supplied through an air distribution plate. This fluidisation air turns the product into an expanded fluidised bed. The forced convection in the fluidised bed leads to an optimum heat and mass transfer, which enables highly efficient drying processes. In an apparatus with zone division, the air quantity and the temperature of each section can be set individually. At the end of the apparatus, the product is continuously discharged and supplied to downstream process steps. The process air leaves through an exhaust air hood. Depending on the plant design, filters are integrated into the hood which clean the exhaust air, so that the fine dust content remains in the fluidised bed plant. If a classification of the product or a coarse-grained product is desired, the exhaust air is cleaned by means of a cyclone and optionally a downstream total separator.
Examples for the use of continuous fluidized bed technology
- Agglomeration of instant drinks such as cocoa, fruit drinks
- Spray granulation of calcium lactate
- Agglomeration of baby food
- Spray granulation of fertilisers
- Agglomeration of curry powder
- Agglomeration of instant soups and sauces
- Uniform drying of pharmaceutical wet granules or pellets
- Drying and cooling of plastic granulate
- Spray granulation of vitamin suspensions
- Agglomeration of special flours
- Spray granulation of ceramic slurry
- Continuous layering processes
- Encapsulation of flavourings
- Gentle drying/spray granulation of fermentation products
Demanding sectors such as the food, the fine chemical, the chemical and the biotechnological industries appreciate the continuous fluidised bed technology for its efficient operation. Even in the highly regulated pharmaceutical industry, the continuous process is becoming increasingly important as it is meanwhile exactly reproducible and can be automated. The agglomeration or spray granulation in continuous top and bottom-spray fluidised bed processes have gained acceptance for example in the production of instant products or compressible granulate.
Continuous fluidised bed plants of NEUHAUS NEOTEC offer maximum flexibility in size, equipment and functionality. Thanks to the zone division, many parameters of the continuous NEUHAUS NEOTEC plants can be adjusted individually and the equipment can also be used for batch-wise processing if required.
Our Range of Services
- Advice on technical applications
- Product and process development
- Plant design
- Manufacturing, assembly
- Qualification, commissioning
- Service, Training
Conti FB: Configuration
The planning of a fluidised bed plant requires a lot of specialized knowledge, not only about all the details of the process technology. Our expertise includes not only the perfect engineering, but also in-depth knowledge of raw materials and substances, regulations and standards, production processes, industries, markets and trends.
The configuration of your plant depends on several factors: Which product quantity do you intend to process per hour? What are the properties of the starting material, which final product quality do you want to achieve? Which constructional requirements, which standards do you have to fulfil?
The fluidised bed apparatus is the core component of the plant. Numerous options are available to equip the plant in accordance with the application to be fulfilled. Depending on the design, fluidised bed processes such as drying, agglomeration and spray granulation can be carried out continuously in this system. Size and execution of the plant, the plant design and the peripheral components are individually adapted to the respective product and process requirements.
Customised Temperature Profile
The fluidising air enters the air distributor sidewise and is pressed from below through the distributor plate. Depending on the configuration we offer perforated plates or plates with special perforation. The concept of zone classification ensures that the plant can be used for an even wider range of applications. The fluidised bed plant is divided into several horizontal zones which are separately controlled as to air and heat. A customised temperature profile can be set over the length of the apparatus which can be individually defined for the process in accordance with the product properties. For example different supply air temperatures can be chosen for the agglomeration zone and for the drying and/or cooling zone. This does not only allow an energy saving operation mode, but also ensures gentle product processing.
Static or vibrating
A main feature of the NEUHAUS NEOTEC Conti FB fluidized bed plants is the static or vibrating system, which are optionally supplied with internal filter cartridges. Vibration ensures a basic product fluidisation with a reduced air quantity and avoids strand formation at low expanding fluidised beds. This is helpful for sticky or heavy products. Vibration also helps to empty residues from the apparatus.
Integrated filter cartridges
Most of our plants operate with an internal filter system. This system reduces heavy product-loss during agglomeration, as the entire product quantity remains inside the apparatus. Fine dust is not discharged, but returned to the process for being agglomerated to the required product form. The connected outgoing air components stay clean; a product return unit is not required. The concept of internal filters reduces the cleaning effort, enhances the flexibility of the plant and is necessary for drying fine products.
The internal spray systems allow to use the fluidized bed process for drying and cooling as well as for other technical processes such as agglomeration, granulation and coating. To ensure long-term flexibility of the plant, a spray device should be included or provided as an option for later installation.
- Dust and gas-tight plants
- Execution according to GMP guidelines
- CIP or WIP concepts
- Top or bottom spray
- Internal or external filtration system
- Vibrating or static systems
- Explosion protection concepts
- Inert gas mode and closed loop operation
- Nozzles in every zone, height adjustable
- Removable nozzles, also during the process
- Product weirs for sectioning
- Through-the-wall installation: Separation of technical/production area
Conti FB: Engineering
The NEUHAUS NEOTEC Conti FB fluidised bed system bases on HEINEN DRYING® technology and has been designed for various continuous processes such as drying/cooling, agglomeration and spray granulation . Several additional devices allow to perform these processes within one apparatus; they offer a flexible use of the entire plant. Due to a close meshed size pattern we can manufacture customised plants for almost every required production and space situation.
The engineering of our continuous fluidised bed systems combines proven expertise in process technology with practical process control and maximum flexibility in construction and functionality of the plants.
For simultaneous processing of powdery and liquid substances as required in agglomeration or spray granulation, the plant is provided with internal spray nozzles for spraying liquid on the fluidised product.
Fluidized bed systems manufactured by NEUHAUS NEOTEC are modular constructions and will be customised for your particular application and the required functions. Various options can also be installed later to efficiently match future demands. In the NEUHAUS NEOTEC pilot plant, all processes can be developed, tested and verified both on laboratory and pilot scale.
The required size of a plant depends on the process and on the product to be processed. Product quantities from 10 kg up to several tons can be processed per hour. Our continuous fluidised bed apparatuses are built according to a standardized size pattern. They offer an economic construction for almost every appliance and any space situation. We design a continuous fluidised bed system ranging from a width of only 20 cm to practically any reasonable dimension.
Conti FB: Components
For a constant and reliable product supply, we select the appropriate feeding system such as a differential dosing weigher, vibrating conveyors, belt weigher, etc. The projects we design also include the unit feeding the dosing system via storage bins, pneumatic conveying systems as well as big bag stations.
The fluidised bed apparatus is often followed by a downstream screening unit for ensuring the correct particle fraction. We also integrate conveyor systems and big bag bagging stations in the overall plant concept and in the control unit.
Inlet Air Handling
For constant and reproducible results, process air must be available in a defined quality appropriate for the process. The process air, for example, is individually heated for each zone and dehumidified as required.
Exhaust Air Treatment
On the exhaust air side of the fluidised bed plant, in addition to the exhaust air fan, further air handling components can be integrated optionally to remove dust from the exhaust air or to recover heat.
The control system is an essential quality feature of the plant. NEUHAUS NEOTEC develops own compatible hardware and software solutions which are tailored to a reliable, user-friendly plant operation. Graphical interfaces show clearly the parameter settings, e.g. for the creation of a recipe. An intuitive user interface simplifies the control of the processes. All control programmes (PLC) can be connected via various bus interfaces with connected production plants and external control or evaluation units. Maintenance, fault diagnosis and support are provided worldwide.
Further optional components:
- Feed and discharge systems
- Conveying units
- Silo plants
- Mechanical granulation systems
- Feeding systems for raw materials
- Grinding of the initial substances and of the final products
- Screening of the fine and coarse fraction as well as return systems
- Transport and bagging of finished products
- Explosion protection acc. to ATEX Directive 94/9/EC