Maximising Efficiency with Low-Viscosity Fluids

Achieving consistent mixing is essential in various industries, including food, beverage, and pharmaceutical production, as it directly impacts the quality of the final products. Maintaining uniform viscosity levels throughout the mixing process is crucial for ensuring stable tastes and delivery in every batch. However, mismatched viscosity levels can often pose challenges for industrial cooks, brewers, and pharmacists, leading to increased waste and process turnaround times. Here’s how to overcome these obstacles and optimise your mixing operations for low-viscosity fluids.

Understanding Viscosity:

Viscosity refers to the thickness or thinness of a fluid and is measured in centipoise (cP). This measurement provides designers and operators with valuable insights into the behaviour of each substance during mixing. Factors such as temperature, material properties, and fluid dynamics also influence viscosity. For instance, some fluids exhibit heat-activated properties, while others, like dough, display viscoelastic behaviour, characterised by a combination of elasticity and viscosity.

Identifying Low-Viscosity Fluids:

Fluids with viscosity ratings ranging from 100 to 1,000 cP are classified as low-viscous. Common examples include olive oil, soft paints, milk, thin yogurt, and beer. In contrast, fluids with viscosity exceeding 1,000 cP are considered high-viscous, with water serving as a reference point with a viscosity value of 1 cP.

Click here to watch the HiFlux Filtration Video explaining differences in fluid viscosities

Common Challenges and Solutions:

Mismatched Mixing of Viscosity Levels:

Problems often arise when rapidly mixing fluids with drastically different viscosities without adequate power and drag. This can lead to ineffective mixing, air infusion, and clumping.

Solution: Ensure machinery is appropriately matched to the viscosity of each input, avoiding overpowered equipment and optimising mixing times.

Loading Sequence:

Loading higher viscosity products before lower ones can disrupt the mixing process and result in uneven distribution of ingredients.

Solution: Plan loading sequences carefully, prioritising low-viscosity fluids to facilitate smoother mixing.

Equipment Selection:

Using machinery designed for high-viscosity fluids with low-viscosity mixes can lead to inefficiencies and poor-quality outcomes.

Solution: Opt for equipment with suitable rotors and turbines, such as models with gentle and slower mixing capabilities, to achieve optimal results.

Excessive Mixing Runtimes:

Prolonged mixing times are unnecessary for low-resistance mixes and may cause unnecessary wear and tear on equipment.

Solution: Adjust mixing durations to match the requirements of low-viscosity fluids, optimising efficiency without compromising quality.

By addressing these common challenges and implementing appropriate solutions, industrial operators can avoid issues such as air infusion, clumping, and undesirable texture variations in finished products.

In conclusion, by understanding viscosity principles and employing suitable equipment and mixing techniques, businesses can maximise efficiency and quality when working with low-viscosity fluids, ultimately enhancing productivity and reducing waste.

Exploring Equipment Options:

ITS offers a comprehensive range of pumps, filtration and mixing equipment tailored to the needs of the food and beverage sector. Our technical sales team is available to provide expert guidance and assistance in selecting the best products to suit your specific requirements.

Visit our website – or get in touch…