Stuck on how to begin troubleshooting spray dryers in your facility? Spray dryers are complex processing machines and the products that run on them only make them more complex. This is especially true when processing difficult mixtures like food, dairy and flavor powders. Operational troubles and challenges arise continuously and a keen eye for troubleshooting can be the difference between a steady and safely operating plant and one with lots of lost production time or product.
When troubleshooting spray dryers, one needs to quickly identify the problem, understand the desired state and, finally, be able to confidently make the correct intervention.
Giving exact instructions for troubleshooting spray dryers in every case is nearly impossible due to the many temperature, pressure, airflow and other parameters that you need to understand when your spray dryer is running. One starting point is to have correct documentation for your baseline operation.
Next, one needs to understand the desired operating state under which you are producing high quality powders. This involves not only having a good understanding of the characteristics of your feed and powder when you are producing powder that meets your specification, but then understanding and documenting the procedures by which you run your spray dryer and the acceptable range of settings you use for temperatures, pressure, etc., when you are producing powder within specification.
It is also important to keep a set of records of operating procedures and parameters under which you successfully produce your product.
If the problem you’re trying to troubleshoot is related to quality, then having log-sheets or, better yet, computer trends, will let you check for deviations from the documentation you have been keeping.
Remember that the issue could be with the quality of the data your analyzing, so it is essential that you trust the instruments from which the data is coming. The correct calibration of all instruments is essential.
Having these basics correct will allow you to begin tackling the challenges of reduced capacity, unwanted build-up, extended CIP wash cycles, product quality or concerns of issues that could lead to fires.
The Caloris team is poised and ready to help troubleshoot problems with your spray dryer operation. Contact us by calling 410-822-6900 or sending email to firstname.lastname@example.org to reach one of our specialists today.
This blog post was written by Caloris Business Development Manager and Spray Dryer Expert Jim Kent.