At drinktec 2017 (Hall A3/ Stand 313), the GEA Ariete Homogenizer 5400, the world’s most powerful homogenizer, will be the star of the show. This five-piston homogenizer can process 80,000 liters per hour at 120 bar, providing a quarter more power than any machine in the industry so far. Its built-in versatility makes it suitable for any application in the dairy and beverage industries yet it can still process 5,000 liters per hour at 1,500 bar for pharmaceutical applications.
“After studying the market, it became clear that customers, particularly those in the food and dairy sector, needed bigger, more powerful, more efficient homogenizers if they were going to keep up with demand while fulfilling their environmental responsibilities,” said Massimiliano Benassi, responsible for the product development of homogenizers at GEA.
Talking to customers
Discussions with customers were a key focus in the development of the Ariete Homogenizer 5400. Massimiliano Benassi: “From the beginning, we have closely involved important customers from the dairy industry in the project. For example, our Chinese customers wanted us to deliver a homogenizer that could produce larger quantities of product while guaranteeing safety, reliability and efficiency. In addition, we knew that some US companies were consolidating their smaller production sites and so needed homogenizers with much higher capacity. In 2015, we began a feasibility study and product development program with the aim of improving the previous models and meeting the needs of the market. In the meantime, the successes at pilot plants have proven that we are about to launch the world's best homogenizer and pump series.”
All product-contact components are designed to ensure optimum product flow, not only for milk, but also for viscous substances, such as milk by-products with a high solids content. It is possible to allocate the machine to other product lines for different applications (e.g. from low viscous to high viscous products), just by replacing the pumping valves, without substituting the compression block or the machine.
7% more economical
Today's companies attach great importance to high plant efficiency. Rising energy costs are a constant challenge as is the demand to reduce energy consumption and consequent emissions. This is gaining in significance both from the perspective of sustainability and for ensuring customer acceptance and trust: higher capacity and productivity must not be achieved at the expense of the environment.
To meet this need GEA has designed the Ariete Homogenizer 5400 to be more economical than alternative technologies: the use of a single homogenizer where two would have been necessary before, saves energy, reduces maintenance and spare parts requirements and requires less space. In addition GEA has made the Ariete Pump 5400 7% more efficient in its use of power (2.8 kW (Kilo Watt) to pasteurize 1,000 liters of milk compared with 3 kW for other comparable machines) when used with the high-efficiency GEA NanoVALVE. It also uses less water: eight liters compared with the usual 12.6 liters.
Operating costs in view
The large front door provides easy access to the critical areas of the unit for easy operation and maintenance. The reinforced platform is more stable than any other model on the market. This creates quieter and more vibration-free operation that reduces wear on critical parts. Noise is also reduced because GEA has fitted the inlet manifold inside the cladding. Dead zones are avoided thanks to the optimized flow dynamics which also makes cleaning more efficient. The inclined outer housing makes it easy to clean the exterior. The engine is safe and easy to access. Overall, the clean design, the uncomplicated internal access and the simple tightening of the drive belt minimize the maintenance effort. These factors combine to reduce the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) which is increasingly important in all investment decisions.
The Ariete Homogenizer 5400 is also available with a smaller 315 kW engine (GEA Ariete Homogenizer 5315). These two models replace the predecessors of Ariete NS5355 and Ariete NS250. They form the top of the GEA homogenizer series. Other features of the series are:
- the GEA NanoVALVE valve, which reduces the pressure required for effective homogenization by as much as 30,
- GEA NiSoPURE to reduce water and steam consumption by up to 90% in aseptic applications,
- and GEA’s Oil Purification System (OPS) that reduces oils wastage, shortens service time and extends maintenance intervals by up to four times.