Mixing Control

Sterling, IL, August 2018:  A critical step in most dry bulk batching manufacturing processes is mixing or blending.  Usually the mixing / blending together of various raw materials is done in a specific proportion in order to produce a final compound.  Mixing control is critical to quality and production efficiency.  One such industrial application example is rubber compounding.  Most often to produce a rubber compound a combination of plastic resin (pellets, flakes, powders, or liquid) is combined with other materials, including liquids and bulk solid materials.  Sterling Systems & Controls, Inc. has introduced a customized system for a rubber compounding application.  This system includes a variety of mechanical equipment, such as automation of the mixing and batching processes, a bulk bag unloading system, and the electrical controls.

Batched ingredients (liquid and solid materials) must be mixed.  A specialty mixer is used. The workhorse mixer of the rubber manufacturing industry is the internal mixer, or Banbury (named for its principle inventor) in which heat and pressure are applied simultaneously. The internal mixer uses two interrupted spiral rotors moving in opposite directions at a set RPM, as required by the compounding process for the specific rubber compound being produced. The shearing action in the internal mixer is intense, and the power required for the mixing/blending operation can be quite high.

Mixer process control is required to produce the end product and is automated for optimal efficiency.  This is a part of the overall automation and process control system provided by Sterling Systems & Controls, which includes; mixing/blending process, main batching process, auxiliary batching, drop mill process, extruding and cooling.

Mixer Shown on Batching Screen

Mixing/Blending Control

An HMI mixing screen provided in the Sterling Systems’ automation system is an extension of the main batching screen which shows all of the equipment associated with the mixer. From the mixing screen the user has the capability to control the mixer’s RPM on the formula being run, along with the capability to view the status of and control related equipment. This screen also offers a data trending screen that allows the user to view the batch temperature, mixer torque, mixer power, and mixer speed for the last twenty hours.

Sterling Systems & Controls, Inc. has 40+ years of experience providing efficient solutions for process equipment, batching, micro, minor and bulk weighing, bag unloading systems, as well as plant automation.  Sterling’s designs utilize the latest technology to provide specialized data management, raw material management, along with production data tracking.  For more information contact Sterling Systems & Controls at 1-815-625-0852 sci@sterlingcontrols.com, and at www.sterlingcontrols.com.