• Self-Agglomeration in Fluidised Beds after Spray Drying

      Fitzpatrick, John J.; Wu, Shaozong; Cronin, Kevin; Miao, Song; China Scholarship Council; 201606350091 (MDPI AG, 2020-06-05)
      Many powders are produced in spray-drying processes from liquid concentrates. Self-agglomeration can be performed in a fluidised bed where the spray-dried powder is agglomerated using the liquid concentrate as the binder material. This has advantages over traditional wet agglomeration in fluid beds using liquid binders (such as water or sugar solutions). These include thermal energy savings and no additional non-aqueous binder components added. The work presented has two parts. The first part is experimental, which investigated the self-agglomeration of whey protein isolate (WPI) powder as a case-study. It showed that satisfactory agglomeration was achieved with a great improvement in the wettability of the powder. The second part of the work performed thermal energy analysis to estimate the energy saving potential of self-agglomeration, and how this is influenced by binder to powder ratio and binder solids concentration. For the WPI case-study, the analysis showed there is potential for a 19% saving in thermal energy requirement for self-agglomeration in comparison to traditional agglomeration using a water binder.