GEA Niro FILTERMAT™ spray dryer
GEA Niro FILTERMAT™ spray dryer

With a high carbohydrate and fat content, the spray drying process becomes more difficult to handle and deposits in the plant becomes more of an issue. The GEA Niro FILTERMAT™ dryer is designed to overcome these problems. Due to its construction, it can be applied to dry 'difficult products', e.g. products that cannot be dried in a traditional spray dryer.

The FILTERMAT™ process
The FILTERMAT™ spray dryer is based on co-current nozzle atomization, where the nozzles are placed right below a specially designed air disperser with two air inlets. The air flow ensures that the atomized product particles do not get in contact with the chamber wall. Should it, however, happen then the air cooled chamber surface prevents scorching to the deposits. The product particles with high moisture content will fall onto the bottom of the drying chamber, which is formed as a moving belt.

All flowsheets are available for download in the Animation Download area.

As the belt is porous, it permits the drying air to pass through the formed 'mat ' of powder, which will act as a filter. The drying air contain a very small amount of particles and can without problems be sent to the atmosphere; however, cyclones and/or CIP-able bag filters are always installed as a precaution. The small amount of powder collected here is negligible.

The moist powder on the moving belt is conveyed into the after-drying section, where warm air is passed through the powder layer and the porous belt for final drying. Cooling of the powder is likewise done in a subsequent section, where cold dehumidified air is passed through the powder layer at the belt. No energy is used to 'fluidize' and convey the product during the after-drying and cooling. After discharge from the belt the product has a porous structure, which can be milled to the requested particle/agglomerate size.

The air used for the final drying and cooling is, like the main drying air, passed through the cyclone and/or CIP-able bag filter.

FILTERMAT™ product applications
The GEA Niro FILTERMAT™ spray dryer is used for e.g. drying of tomatoes, coffee whitener, whey and a vast number of other products.

On request, the plant can be designed and delivered for a full manual and/or automatic CIP Cleaning In Place including CIP Kitchen with tanks, pumps, valves and instrumentation.

The FILTERMAT™ spray dryer forms the key element in a complete process line for food and dairy powders.


Safety aspects
All plants designed and supplied by GEA Process Engineering will enable the end user to obtain approvals put forward by the EU directive.