Dispatches from Anuga FoodTec 2015

GEA improves DDD air disperser with infrared camera technology

By Jenny Eagle

- Last updated on GMT

Dr Martin Skanderby, sales group manager, GEA Process Engineering
Dr Martin Skanderby, sales group manager, GEA Process Engineering

Related tags Gea process engineering

GEA Process Engineering has improved its DDD type (Direct Duct Disperser) air disperser with infrared cameras monitoring nozzle performance for its spray drying technology for food and dairy powders.

Dr Martin Skanderby, sales group manager, GEA Process Engineering, told FoodProductionDaily, the disperser has greater flow control, an improved nozzle system and provides better quality. 

CFD calculations

A091 Spray dryer MSD

The very first DDD was installed in 2007 and it has been improved further since as part of its on-going development​,” he said. 

Now, we believe by introducing an infrared camera we have a complete package because we now have as a standard 24/7 surveillance and outstanding performance of air dispersal at the same time​. 

We cannot work on something for several years then market it as new as the dryers are sold on a continuous basis. There are not that many compared to consumer goods but with this installation we have updated it​.” 

According to Skanderby, who was speaking at Anuga FoodTec 2015, wet particles are kept in the middle of the air disperser with less deposits, using CFD (Computational Fluid Dynamics) calculations. 

CFD has improved a lot in the last five years, it’s not new but we revisited it. The models have to be correct and there has been a lot of development in that​,” he added. 

The camera surveillance can identify which nozzles need to be taken out for cleaning, and there is room for more nozzles than needed meaning a dryer can operate 24/7 without having to be shut down. 

Less deposits in the chamber

This technology is much more genius. We feel we have a more precise air flow, from 20% skewered air flow to 5.4% creating less deposits in the chamber and longer production runs between CIP, and less power consumption due to approximately 60% decrease in pressure drop​,” said Skanderby. 

We have used this technology for several years in New Zealand and its now becoming a standard solution in Europe. It contains up to 25%+ capacity, and it has now got a camera system. Most problems in spray dryers occur in the malfunction of the nozzles, or the start-up and shut down of a plant​. 

The advantages of this design are better performance and less production hours at the plant​.” 

The DDD air disperser is supplied for all GEA Niro Spray Dryers for products like milk powder, nutritional formulas and flavors. 

The air disperser is crucial to product quality and plant efficiency because it exposes droplets to hot air to create powder specifications which can be precise,​” added Skanderby.

The challenges as with all processes are capacity issues, energy consumption and availability​.”

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