C. Hare, G. Egan, M. Ghadiri, N. Guillard, T. Bosworth
Chemical Engineering Science
Fine cohesive powders are often dry granulated to improve their flowability. Roller compaction is commonly used to produce dense ribbons which are then milled. The material properties of the powder and the conditions in the roller compactor affect the strength of the ribbons, however there is no method in the literature to predict the size distribution of the product of ribbon milling. Here we introduce a method, by using the Distinct Element Method (DEM) to determine the prevailing impact velocities and stresses in the mill, with bonded spheres representing the ribbons.The bond strength is calibrated by matching experimental results of three point bend measurements and predictions from numerical simulations. The ribbons are then exposed to the dynamic conditions predicted by the DEM, by dropping them from a controlled height to cause fragmentation, and subsequently stressing them in a shear cell under the conditions again predicted by the DEM. The fragments are sheared under these conditions to represent repeated passage of bars over the fragments at the mill base. Sieve analysis is used here to determine the particle size distribution under given mill conditions. The predicted size distribution of the mill product compares well with the plant data. It is found that the mill speed and length of ribbons fed to the mill have no significant influence on the product size distribution for the range tested.
breakage, Non-spherical, stress distribution. shearing