Compressing Water Softening Tablets

The presence of certain metal ions in water causes a variety of problems. They interfere with the action of soaps, they lead to build up of limescale, which can foul plumbing, and promote galvanic corrosion. Water softeners offer a solution.

Industrial Tableting Solutions

Most water softeners on the market operate on an “ion exchange” system whereby the hardness ions (calcium and magnesium) are exchanged for sodium (salt) or potassium (salt) ions. This takes place within the resin tank of the water softener. When water flows through the tank, it comes in contact with small resin beads that are covered with sodium or potassium ions. 

As the water flows through the resin beads, the calcium and magnesium ions trade places with the sodium ions. That is why softened water becomes higher in salt content. Eventually, as larger volumes of water are softened, the beads become exhausted and contain nothing but calcium and magnesium. Replacing the salt tablet recharges the system. Salt tablets for water softening systems represent a typical high volume consumer product. In this example, however, the product is very corrosive.

The GEA R233 double-sided press provides the highest output for salt tablet production. The corrosion-resistant compression area is completely isolated from the technical compartments. In addition, the lower compartment cooling ventilators have been replaced with heat exchangers to keep the technical compartment salt powder free.

The stainless steel press shell not only protects the operator from moving parts, but also considerably reduces the amount of compression noise. Because the punch holders are equipped with high-pressure heads and guiding rollers, there is no wear and tear on the computer-designed cams or the punch holders themselves. The cycloid drive guarantees a long, trouble-free drive train lifetime and the standalone electrical cabinet contains only high standard components. 

Key features relevant to this application 

  • tool holders for high compression forces
  • powder flow enhancers
  • tablet weight and hardness control
  • ejection
  • environmental conditioning.