Homogenizer, Rotor-stator, Dispering, Emulsifying – Glossary

Dispersing is the actual generic term for work, which is executed using rotor-stator units. It is also referred to as “wet grinding”. The main task of rotor-stator dispersers is crushing, mixing or foaming of different components to evenly distribute them. The resulting dispersions, emulsions, suspensions and foams are used in the pharmaceutical, chemical, food, life science and cosmetics industry.

Dispersing is the mixing of at least two substances that: don’t dissolve in each other, hardly dissolve in each other, or don’t chemically react with each other. During a dispersing process one substance (dispersing phase) is distributed throughout another substance (continuous phase).

The goal of most dispersing processes is the production of an emulsion or a suspension. Both are mixtures that deal with a liquid continuous phase. The dispersing phase of an emulsion is also liquid. During production of a suspension, solid particles must be smoothly distributed in a liquid.

The Rotor is the rotating part of the generator. As it rotates within the stator, a vortex is created, which sucks the product to be processed into the generator or working zone. In this process, the product is accelerated axially and pushed to the outside through the tooth apertures of the stator by centrifugal force.

Two liquids that cannot be mixed stably, a hydrophobic (e.g. oil) and a hydrophilic (e.g. water) phase, are mixed with each other permanently. In order to get a stable emulsion the total surface of drops is required to be as large as possible (this can only be achieved by very small drops) and an emulsifier and possibly a stabilizer are required as well. (e.g. skin cream).

Two or more product phases are distributed evenly so that exactly the same distribution is established in each partial quantity.

This term relates to the distribution of an insoluble solid material in a liquid. In many cases, suspending requires high turbulences and special generator geometries (e.g. color particles together with the carrier liquid).

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