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Flow Test: Wheat Gluten Powder

Wheat gluten is used in many industries: food and beverage, health and personal care products, pharmaceuticals and animal feeds.

Wheat gluten has good water retention and texture stabilizing properties. It is often added to low-gluten or whole grain flours like rye or oat, or to food products like instant noodles. Because of the vitamins and minerals in wheat, it is also added to animal feed and skincare products.

However, wheat gluten can be prone to bridging, arching and other material flow problems. This video shows how it clogs up the mouth of the vessel, and has to be hammered free.

However, AirSweep pneumatic flow aids are particularly effective for these types of bulk powders. Four AirSweep VA-04 units were installed 4” and 10” above the discharge, and spaced 90 degrees apart. Once they were turned on, the wheat gluten powder flowed freely, even when the discharge size was shortened from 4” to 1.5”

AirSweep also has USDA-accepted models that meet the sanitary requirements of food and pharmaceutical industries. The air-tight nozzle also eliminates material feedback, so none of the powders fly back into the nozzle. This minimizes cleaning and maintenance, and prevents damage to the system.

While the AirSweep VA-06 units are meant for smaller vessels, there are models available for large silos, bins and cones.