Enhancing Manufacturing Processes: Groundbreaking Production Equipment Cleaning Solutions

washing station, cleaning solution

Custom Powder Systems provides situation-specific solutions for dry material handling that are fully-integrated with the requirements of individual processes. Our washing stations automate production equipment cleaning and assure repeatability of results, which is not obtainable through manual washing. They can be customized for a multitude of industries, including food, chemical, pharmaceutical, and nutraceutical.

Within their manufacturing processes, many companies use containers that need to be cleaned and dried between each use. In the past, when products were made in much smaller batches, these containers could be hand-washed, air-dried, and then inspected for cleanliness. However, considering labor costs, working conditions for employees, passing validation scrutiny, and other regulations companies must adhere to, manual cleaning is no longer an efficient option.

Case Study: Automated Washing System for IBCs

In 2022, Custom Powder Systems was approached by a manufacturer looking for a fully-automated wash station that could automatically load, wash, dry, and unload an intermediate bulk container (IBC). After determining the customer’s specifications, CPS supplied an Automated Washing System with a load/unload conveyor, wash cabinet, and utility skid. These wash stations are now available in the CPS product library and can serve as a valuable piece of equipment in a variety of industries.

The full automation of this system drastically reduces the necessary employee labor required to hygienically clean IBCs, cuts the wash and dry time down to a 20-30 minute cycle, and ensures that each container is cleaned the same way each time, thus significantly shortening the time and labor cost it would normally take to get cleaned containers back into production.

This wash cabinet is designed with a single inlet/exit door, an exterior washing manifold with strategically-placed spray nozzles to wash the outside of the IBCs, and a high-pressure booster pump with a reciprocating rotating spray nozzle to wash the bin’s interior. Its utility skid includes a booster pump, detergent pump, piping, and valves for washing both the bin’s interior and exterior.

An air recirculation and drying system utilizing a highly-efficient electric heater system greatly reduces utility consumption during drying and cool-down and eliminates the need to pull air from outside the building.

The wash cabinet is supplied with an adjustable-speed fan to regulate pressure in the cabinet during washing and while opening the cabinet door for loading and unloading IBCs. At the intake duct, a small volume of make-up air passes through pre and HEPA filters into the wash cabinet.

Drying air temperature is recipe-driven and adjustable through the system’s Operator Interface Terminal (OIT).

These wash stations are designed, assembled, and tested for function and operation at the Custom Powder Systems facility in Springfield, Missouri prior to shipment. Standard fabrication checks consist of inspections of equipment to verify that it has been constructed in accordance with drawings and specifications, and operational tests are done to confirm the proper operability of components throughout all intended operating ranges and conditions.

For the Pharmaceutical, Biotech, and Nutraceutical industries, Custom Powder wash stations are designed and fabricated in accordance with Current Good Manufacturing Practices (cGMP) established by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA CFR Title 21, parts 210 and 211) and general practices adopted by the industries. 

An Optional Factory Acceptance Test (FAT), Site Acceptance Test (SAT), and Installation and Operating Qualifications (IQOQ) with the inclusion of relevant documentation are performed by trained and experienced members of the documentation and technical service department.

Custom Powder Systems evaluates every application to address the unique cleaning requirements for every piece of equipment, whether it comes from CPS or currently exists within a facility. Manufacturers can take advantage of significant time and labor savings by adding a custom-built automated wash system to their process.

For more information, contact us, and let us know what problems we can help you solve.

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