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Chemithon Turbo Tube® Dryer

Historically, production of powdered detergents has been done either with spray drying equipment or with dry neutralization and agglomeration equipment. While spray dryers are versatile with respect to formulation and are capable of producing high active products, they are expensive to operate due to high energy costs, they require large capital expenses for equipment and land and create significant air pollution problems.. Production of powdered detergents by dry neutralization and agglomeration while utilizing inexpensive and compact equipment has severe formulation limitations. What has been required is a technology to produce concentrated, low moisture detergent actives which can be easily transported for later agglomeration into detergent powders.

Several years ago recognition of these limitations on conventional powdered detergent production techniques prompted Chemithon to initiate a research program with the objectives of developing technology and equipment that would allow non spray dried detergent production with total formulation versatility. The requirement for formulation versatility ruled out classic dry neutralization techniques which require use of hydrolytically stable surfactant acids and solid bases such as sodium carbonate. As a result of this commitment to the development of a new process Chemithon introduced the Turbo Tube® Dryer system for production of concentrated detergent actives by high active neutralization. This equipment will produce detergent pastes containing between 20 and 25% moisture. These pastes can be further processed in Chemithon's Turbo Tube® Dryer to produce solid detergent active having a moisture level of 1 to 5%. The process is applicable to alcohol sulfates, alpha olefin sulfonates, alpha sulfo methyl esters and linear alkyl benzene sulfonates. Once the detergent solids are produced, they can be agglomerated in Chemithon supplied equipment to produce finished, compact detergent formulations.

The net result is that total formulation versatility is achieved. The production of detergent active has been uncoupled from the production of finished powdered detergents. The concentrated dry detergent active is available in powdered or non dusting needle form and can be easily and inexpensively shipped from large sulfonation facilities to small, local manufactures for formulation into finished products.

Incorporating the TTD into your existing detergent agglomeration process will greatly increase formulation flexibility by allowing much higher active levels than can be obtained by adding liquid surfactants or by dry neutralization of sulfonic acid. Mixed actives can be easily by dried and agglomerated into the finished detergent. In addition to surfactants, other liquid ingredients can be dried in the TTD prior to agglomeration.

Detergent Actives which can be dried:

  • Alcohol sulfates
    C12, C12/14, C14-15, C16,18, C12/18
  • Alpha Olefin Sulfonate
  • Linear Alkylbenzene Sulfonate
  • MES
    C12/14, C16/18
  • SXS
  • Mixed Anionic Detergent Actives
  • Mixtures of LABS and liquid Silicates

Process Advantages

The TTD has a number of advantages over traditional drying systems such as wiped film evaporators and spray towers:

  • Lower capital and operating costs
  • Energy efficient
  • Non-dusting
  • No moving parts
  • No fire or explosion hazards
  • No plume
  • Compact
  • Enhances spray tower and agglomerator capacities and efficiencies
  • Self-cleaning
  • No product degradation or loss during processing

Commercial installations prove the technical and economic benefits of this process. Contact us to learn how you can lower your surfactant drying costs.

For More Information:

Hal Busick
Manager of Sales



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