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Hammermill grinding in petfood production: Ensuring a more flexible, reliable, efficient & sustainable manufacturing process

By committing to providing the best possible solution to improve customers’ operations in a changing market environment, whilst helping them differentiate on the marketplace, Famsun recently rolled the FSBP700 Non-Stop Automatic Screen Change Hammermill.

In addition to its high capacity, low maintenance and reduced production cost, the new robust, flexible, and efficient grinding machine can process production orders that of many specified recipes and feed ingredients from a wide range of resources without stopping the machine for frequent screen changeovers.

Nearly all ingredients in feed manufacturing will be subjected to some type of particle size reduction to make feed products suitable for animal development. The increased surface area of nutrients is exposed to the animal digestive system and leads to the complete digestion of ingredients, resulting in better feed efficiency.

Grinding is the most common operation for particle size reduction in feed manufacturing. Ground particles in uniform size are the perfect mediums to hold minerals and protein. This physical feature enables them to facilitate the subsequent processing steps such as handling, proportioning, mixing, pelleting, etc. and contribute to improved processing quality and working efficiency.

Hammermills have long been used for the grinding process in feed mills and is still the most popular choice in today’s feed factories. Particle size reduction in a hammermill occurs under the impaction/attrition between the rapidly moving hammers and relatively slow-moving particles.

Screens fitted in the milling chamber allow appropriately sized materials to pass as the finished product. It is a relatively simple machine and requires a fairly low degree of skill in both operation and maintenance.

hammermill-grinding

Having greater capacity per unit horsepower, capable of changing production from grinding one grain to another by changing screens, along with long service life, the hammermill looks like a perfect machine. However, it is far from perfect for Famsun.

By committing to providing advanced productivity and the best possible solution to improve customers’ operations, the feed mill solution expert is always looking for improvements and innovations on every piece of its equipment, parts, and solutions.

For Famsun hammermill developers who are always learning customers’ changing demands, there seems to be an insatiable demand for a better machine, even after having delivered over 125,000 proven hammermills onto the markets worldwide.

Their target is for a flexible and efficient machine that widely adapts to the production of multiple recipes and the processing of diverse ingredients.

That means a resilient hammermill of a higher capacity, better product uniformity, lower energy consumption, consistent production with less stoppage, which requires less human intervention, less maintenance, and is safe for man and machine, producing minimum fines, dust, waste and noise.

Keeping these targets in mind, Famsun experts started to develop a new hammermill two years ago. After continuous optimisation and lots of trial and error, the company successfully rolled out the  FSBP700 Non-Stop Automatic Screen Change Hammer Mill in 2021.

The extensively improved machine is distinguished by the non-stop automatic screen system and new improvements on many fronts. These upgrades ensure flexibility, reliability, efficiency, and sustainability for grinding production.

Non-stop automatic screen change system
Non-stop automatic screen changing is the most profound feature of the new hammermill. The screen change system consists of two screen holders, two slides for the screen holders to slide in or out of the chamber, and two cylinder-drive levers to ensure the automatic sliding of screen holders.

With the automatic changing system, it is possible to change screens within two minutes.

During the whole changeover course, the rotor keeps running and there is no starting and shut off time lost. In other words, it will save 30 minutes or more time than traditional manual screen changing. The non-stop automatic screen change system increases production efficiency and provides consistent quality and production with minimum time and energy loss.

It is an ideal machine for aquafeed mills and petfood factories at where the recipes must be regularly changed.

The slide is designed with many troughs, from which the ground particles on it can be removed out completely and make the screen holder move smoothly during the screen change process.

With the non-stop design, the screen can now slide out of the machine sideways for exchanging and inspection easily, while the wear parts can be quickly reachable and easily changed from the large assess doors on its housing, this saves space and time for operations of inspection, cleaning, and maintenance compared to the traditional hammermills.

hammermill-grinding

Progress in terms of efficiency & capacity
In a hammermill, a set of high-speed moving hammers breaks the grains which come in contact by hammering effect and press them against the openings in the screen.

The correctly sized particles pass through the screens while the larger-sized particles remain in the chamber for further grinding until they are small enough to pass through the screens.

The efficiency and capacity of the hammermill depend on several factors: tip speed of the hammer, hammer design, number of hammers, open area of screens, hammermill motor, the gap between hammer tip and screen, airflow through a hammermill, etc.

Besides having a well-balanced reversible running rotor for optimal use of hammers and screens and an optimised arrangement of the robust hammers as well as a widened grinding surface like the previous types, Famsun FSBP700 Non-Stop Automatic Screen Change Hammermill has made great progress on many fronts to improve its grinding efficiency and capacity.

The new machine introduces several tooth plates at the inlet of the grinding chamber to pre-grind the grains in advance. The diameter of grinding chamber is about 700mm, with a rotation speed of 3000 rpm, it can provide a maximum tip speed of 105m/s for efficient grinding.

In addition, a w-shape plate is installed at its bottom to destroy the material circulation layer in the chamber and provides second grinding efforts on the grains. There are also protection devices installed for cylinders, couplings, and access doors to protect the safety of operators and the hammermill.

A specially designed tray is also available to install on the machine to speed up hammer replacement. Many improvements together make an essential contribution to further increasing the production efficiency and capacity of the hammermill.

Trail productions (with a fish feed recipe made of 40% soybean meal, 30% rice bran, 5% fish meal, and some local sourced raw materials and alternatives) with a partnering feed mill in Bangladesh showed that Famsun FSBP700 Non-Stop Automatic Screen Change Hammermill (250kW) can boost production capacity to over 13t/h with screens of 1.0mm holes.

When changing production with 0.8mm-hole screens, it also can achieve an output of over 11tonnes per hour. Famsun FSBP700 Non-Stop Automatic Screen Change Hammermill is available with grinding withes and motor configurations to meet the different production requirements.

Note from the editor:
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Article contributed by Famsun, China.

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