What Is a Chemical Mixer?

Mary McMahon
Mary McMahon

A chemical mixer is a piece of heavy equipment that can be used to mix chemical compounds for industrial production and other purposes. Manufacturers of chemical mixers typically produce a range of products geared toward different applications and can custom-build units for particular specifications if none of their base models are appropriate. The fertilizer, pharmaceutical and chemical industries all have uses for chemical mixers.

Fertilizer may be produced using a chemical mixer.
Fertilizer may be produced using a chemical mixer.

Several design considerations go into the construction of a chemical mixer. One is batch size. Companies typically blend chemicals in large batches and might need some flexibility. Thus, they need extremely large mixers that can easily accommodate loads of varying sizes and weights. Some chemical mixers might have features such as multiple chambers and chutes to handle different kinds of loads, and users can configure the mixers as needed for specific applications.

Reactivity is another concern. Harsh chemicals can eat through finishes and damage components. Chemical mixers need to be as nonreactive as possible, in addition to being capable of handling explosive, caustic and other dangerous materials. For certain applications, specialty mixers and liners might be needed. These can be costly.

Mixers might have removable agitators and other mixing components to allow the user to work with different kinds of materials. Lightweight liquids might combine readily, for instance, and very viscous materials require heavier mixing and might tend to stick and attach themselves to the side of the mixer. Materials such as asphalt mixes can be even more challenging to evenly blend because of their solid contents.

Integrity also can be a concern with a chemical mixer. For food and pharmaceutical products, sterility is essential, or the products can become contaminated in production and might not be safe for consumption. Other chemical mixtures can be reactive and need to be isolated to prevent incidents or to ensure the quality of the components in the blend. Contamination and adulterants can render a batch useless. Mixers need tight seals that are easy to check for signs of cracks and leaks.

A company that needs a chemical mixer might be able to rent or lease one to try several models and determine which one would be most suitable. Used mixers also are commonly available for companies that need to save money on equipment purchases. If a new chemical mixer is necessary, a manufacturer might offer a guarantee to the customer that allows for returns, repairs and basic service for free within a set time period.

Mary McMahon
Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a wiseGEEK researcher and writer. Mary has a liberal arts degree from Goddard College and spends her free time reading, cooking, and exploring the great outdoors.

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