Desired increases in production rates and some changes in products forced a major food processor and packager in the Northeast to consider upgrading some of its material handling and processing operations.
One definite bottleneck was a blending operation. Ingredients were vacuum conveyed into the vee-blender by a method known as direct loading. A 2 1/2" diameter vacuum line from a 10 horsepower vacuum pump, located in an adjacent room, was attached to the cover on one leg of the vee. creating negative pressure in the blender. A 2 1/2" flexible hose was attached to the cover on the other leg- A wand on the other end of the hose was used to draw ingredients from a small hopper or from bags directly into the blender.
The single 10 horsepower pump could not produce enough air flow at high enough vacuum to meet the increased production demands. Equally important, a product containing 1 1/2" to 2" long noodles was added to the array of products to be blended in the department Expert opinion was that the noodles were certain to jam in the 2 1/2" line and that minimum 4" lines would be required. This. in turn meant more power yet to maintain satisfactory air velocity in the lines to convey the materials.
The solution proposed by VAC-U-MAX engineers provided all of the power required to handle the most difficult ingredients at desired rates and also provided means to customize the air flow to the particular ingredients being handled at any time.