Batch Mixing vs. Continuous Mixing
In batch operation, all ingredients are loaded into the mixer together or in a pre-defined sequence, and mixed until a homogenous material is produced and discharged from the mixer in a single lot. The output of a batch mixer is measured in kg/batch.
The continuous mixer on the other hand is generally dedicated to a single high volume product. Ingredients are continuously charged into the mixer in accordance with the formulation. The mixing takes place as the material travels from the charging port to the discharge nozzle, from where it is continuously discharged. The output of a continuous mixer is measured in kg/hr.
The selection of batch or continuous mixer depends on several factors viz., quantity of the material to be mixed, desired standards of homogeneity of product mix, pre-mixing operations and material handling equipment, post-mixing operations, and any multiple product formulation requirement.
While some types of mixers are only suitable for either batch or continuous operations, some other types can be adapted for operation in both batch and continuous modes. For example, tumbling blenders (V-blender, double cone blender) are suitable only for batch operation. On the other hand, plow mixers and ribbon blenders can be designed for operation in both batch and continuous modes.