Advanced Powder Technology, Vol.30, No.11, 2823-2831, 2019
Optimization of aqueous microgrinding processes for fibrous plant materials
Fibrous plant-based materials are characterized by inhomogeneous structure and composition, which further evolve during wet grinding processes and affect the surface functionality of micronized particles. Therefore, the performance of aqueous microgrinding operations in stirred media mills can be optimized by investigating the interaction between process conditions and material properties of heterogeneous fibrous plant materials. In this experimental study it is shown how particle size reduction, tendency of re-agglomeration and stability of the suspension of micronized particles are driven by the specific energy input, residence time, temperature and presence of surfactants during the milling process. A structured experimental approach is described to optimize the achievable particle size reduction, expressed by the top cut diameter d(90,3). It was found that the applied wet milling process determines the stability of particle suspensions throughout further downstream processing, making the grinding process the core unit operation with respect to the performance and formulation of food products containing micronized particles. (C) 2019 The Society of Powder Technology Japan. Published by Elsevier B.V. and The Society of Powder Technology Japan. All rights reserved.