Machines FAQ

What kinds of mixers does Maelstrom sell?

Why does Maelstrom specialise in these kinds of mixers?

Can you help me choose what type of mixer I need?

How do I select a suitable mixer model and size from your range?

Can you supply complimentary products and complete systems?

Which Maelstrom mixer do you suggest for emulsification?

Which Maelstrom mixer do you suggest for powder dispersion?

Which Maelstrom mixer do you suggest for particle size reduction?

Which Maelstrom mixer do you suggest for rubber and plastics?

What information do I need to provide to select a suitable mixer?

What materials of construction do you use?

Do you offer food and pharmaceutical grade machines?

Do you offer machines for hazardous (ATEX) environment use?

Are your machines certified for use in my country?

Can you make mixers in special materials such as titanium, Hastelloy® etc.?

What kinds of applications are your machines suited to?

I need a special-purpose fluid processing machine not in your standard offering – can you help?

Can you modify or customise a standard machine to suit my particular needs?

What kinds of mixers does Maelstrom sell?

We design, build and sell high energy fluid mixing devices commonly called “high shear mixers”, “homogenisers”, “fluid mills” and “colloid mills”. These mixers can be used for liquid-liquid and solid-liquid mixing and we can also design a build custom machines for special applications. We supply all process industries from food and pharmaceutical to speciality chemicals, rubber and plastics, waste water and many others. Hazardous area (ATEX) and hygienic designs are available in our standard ranges. We do not provide simple impellers, static mixers, ultrasonic mixers or high pressure homogenisers unless they are part of a complete system supplied by us.

Why does Maelstrom specialise in these kinds of mixers?

Whilst the market for simple impellers and high pressure homogenisers is well catered for, Maelstrom has identified a major gap in the market for cost-effective mixing technologies that outperform existing machines and also extend the range of performance beyond what is currently available. This is particularly relevant as we move towards processes that take increasing advantage of nanotechnologies where the true benefits of nanomaterials can only be realised with effective dispersion and deagglomeration.

Can you help me choose what type of mixer I need?

Certainly. If the information on this website is not sufficient to help you decide, then we would be happy to guide you through the selection process. Whilst we will help with suggestions on appropriate mixer selection and can arrange tests and hire of mixers for evaluation, the final selection decision will be yours. Maelstrom cannot warrant the performance of a mixer in a given application nor will we recommend a particular mixer.

How do I select a suitable mixer model and size from your range?

The first step is to decide whether you need a batch or an inline mixer. You then need to gather as much data as possible about the physical nature of the materials to be mixed, including viscosity, rheological behaviour, toxicity, abrasiveness etc. The final preparatory step is to decide what kind of mixing result you need and how you will measure that the result has been achieved. You can now use the mixer selection support tool on the website, send us an online enquiry or call us on +44 (0)1457 867777 to speak to a representative.

Can you supply complimentary products and complete systems?

Yes. The nature of mixing means that it is central to many production processes and the best mixing performance is usually obtained by carefully matching system components together. For this reason, Maelstrom supplies pumps, dosing systems and drive and control systems for inline applications and vessels, instruments etc. for batch mixing applications. To enquire about ancillary components or complete mixing systems, please send an enquiry or call on +44 (0)1457 867777.

Which Maelstrom mixer do you suggest for emulsification?

IPM machines are the best choice for most emulsification work down to the micron range of droplet sizes. To move into the nanometric scale, then CDDM provides higher mixing energy. Some simple emulsions down to 4-5 microns can be processed by FDM and this may be the most cost-effective option for some applications.

Which Maelstrom mixer do you suggest for powder dispersion?

FDM is the often the best machine for power dispersion work. IPM and CDDM can also process powders provided they are soft solids, but they are more suited to emulsions.

Which Maelstrom mixer do you suggest for particle size reduction?

As with most fluid mixers, Maelstrom machines are unlikely to reduce the size of a fundamental particle but will instead help to deagglomerate or deaggregate particles. FDM can provide good deagglomeration for weakly-bound agglomerates but the higher energy input of CDDM can reduce sizes further. Maelstrom also has a new mill design in its custom machine range intended for use on nano-scale particle deagglomeration. Please enquire for further details.

Which Maelstrom mixer do you suggest for rubber and plastics?

Rubber and plastics typically require low-shear, low pressure-drop mixing using robust machines capable of withstanding very high system pressures. The Ultra-low shear variant of FDM is ideal for this.

What information do I need to provide to select a suitable mixer?

For batch mixing processes, vessel volume and shape, batch volume, fluid viscosity, temperature, pressure, abrasiveness of particles (if any) and desired mixing effect or outcome. A vessel drawing is also helpful in determining the best mixer and method of mounting. For inline mixing, flowrate, viscosity, abrasiveness of particles and desired mixing effect are the most important.

What materials of construction do you use?

Mixer “wetted parts” are typically made from 316 stainless steel although many other materials are available including Hastelloy(R) and titanium. Non wetted parts may be made from stainless steel, painted structural steel, aluminium or other materials, depending on the mixer size and application. Polymers used as vanes for IPM machines are typically virgin PEEK or acetal copolymer with o-rings typically from EPDM or Viton. Special materials such as Chemraz and Kalrez can be used to suit the application or customer preference.

Do you offer food and pharmaceutical grade machines?

Yes. All Maelstrom machines can be optimised for food or pharmaceutical use and these options are included in the selection of any machine in the range. Special cleanability features, materials, finishes and motors are included in the range of hygienic options.

Do you offer machines for hazardous (ATEX) environment use?

Yes. For smaller machines ATEX compatibility is offered as an option to meet the requirements of Group 2 Category 3 (old Zone 2). For larger machines and ATEX or UL requirements different to this, please contact Maelstrom directly on +44 (0)1457 867777.

Are your machines certified for use in my country?

Maelstrom mixers supplied within the European Economic Area (EEA) meet the requirements of the relevant directives and are CE marked. A Declaration of Conformity is supplied with each machine. Machines supplied outside the EEA will be supplied to meet local requirements although the customer may need to take responsibility for local conformity assessment and type approval, in certain circumstances, for complex machines or systems.

Can you make mixers in special materials such as titanium, Hastelloy(R) etc.?

Yes. Provided it is structurally suitable, Maelstrom can supply mixers from almost any engineering material and can also coat components, e.g. with rubber, PTFE or hardening layers to improve wear and chemical attack characteristics.

What kinds of applications are your machines suited to?

Any process involving the mixing of two or more liquids, the mixing of a solid into a liquid or the reduction of solid particle size within a fluid. From the emulsification of food ingredients, creams and lotions to pharmaceutical intermediates, water flocculant dispersion, the blending of colours into plastic melts, the deagglomeration of nanoparticles and nanotubes to the dispersion of paint pigments, Maelstrom can provide machines to do the job. If you are not sure whether our machines are suited to your application a quick call to us on +44 (0)1457 86777 will answer your question.

I need a special-purpose fluid processing machine not in your standard offering – can you help?

Probably. Our custom engineering capability includes the ability to design, build and, if necessary, even invent solutions to particular processing problems. We have successfully completed several projects of this kind over the last 14 years and are always keen to provide a confidential proposal for this kind of work.

Can you modify or customise a standard machine to suit my particular needs?

Certainly. Because we specialise in high performance mixing, our customers often need special machine customisations to suit their particular processes and materials. We pride ourselves on being able to engineer or integrate world-class technologies and components into any machine within our range.