SHAPA are the UK's leading specialist association for the solids handling and processing industry

All our members are established specialists within their fields, and have the experience and commercial standing to provide quality, cost-effective solutions for all aspects of mechanisation for bulk materials handling and storage, conveyors, dust collection and control, instrumentation, mixers, big bag handling, sampling systems, sieves, valves and weighing systems and equipment.

Industrial Mixers and Industrial Dryers

The terms ‘mixing’ and ‘blending’ are often used interchangeably, but technically they are slightly different. Blending is the homogenous distribution of differing materials and is usually a relatively gentle process. It is the process of solid-solid mixing or the mixing of bulk solids with small quantities of liquid. Mixing is usually a more aggressive process involving the combining of material through the beating or stirring of the contents within a static vessel. Agglomeration is the creation of granules from powders through the addition of liquids. Drying is the removal of moisture from wet materials through evaporation by heat. Some mixers can operate as agglomerators or dryers too.




Industrial blenders



Industrial dryers

Industrial mixers

Blending, mostly, takes place in Double Cone and Vee blenders that gently tumble their contents over and over. Rotating Drum blenders, fountain blenders and low speed ribbon and paddle mixers are used for blending too.

Mixing is achieved by way of high speed rotating ribbon blades, ploughshare blades or orbiting vertical screws. ‘No-dead pocket’ valves with contoured outlets are essential when the entire contents within a static mixing must be fully mixed. Otherwise, some unmixed material will discharge from the mixer each time it is unloaded. Blenders that tumble do not suffer this characteristic as the mixture is all funnelled to the outlet. Ribbon mixers, paddle mixers and blenders can be made to mix gently so that they do not damage delicate products. Ploughshare mixers, on the other hand, are ideal for mixtures that need to be beaten together or where colourings or other coating need to be smeared over the entire surface of other materials. Both mixers and blenders can accommodate the addition of liquids to form pastes or slurries and both can be jacketed for heating or cooling their contents.

Mixing in static vessels can either be batch or continuous, whereas tumbling blenders are purely batch machines. Mixers and blenders can have heated jackets or have warmed, dried air passing through them so that they become dryers or reactor vessels. Additionally, the drying of moist filter cake and other materials can also take place in specialist dryers that do not resemble mixers or blenders at all.

It is the aim of all mixer manufacturers to achieve a homogenous mix in the shortest possible time and then to discharge it without any segregation during the process. Such aims have resulted in a multiplicity of variations on traditional mixer and blender types plus a host of inventive, proprietary mixer and blender designs.

Besides machines that are dedicated to mixing, there are storage silos that mix materials: these are called Live Bins or Fountain Blenders. They use screws, spirals and air to continuously recirculate material during storage.

 Agglomerators are devices that fluidise powders so that they can be wetted and combined to form larger particles or granules. The controls associated with the powder flow, fluidisation and liquid injection offer the options of varying particle size, shape and density according to requirements



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10th Anniversary Digital Marketing Workshop

Details of the 10th annual digital marketing workshop have been released, download the flyer for the event here and a booking form to make sure you do not miss out on this vital workshop which will give you the tools to improve your digital marketing profile

Health of the Nation

The need for solid health and safety systems procedures and practices is more important than ever as we move out of the European and customs union into World Trade Organisation rules for the global market read more here....

Only three weeks left to enter the 2018 Solids Handling industry awards - dont miss out

Learning to succeed

Many companies are founded on the back of an innovative idea by forward thinking people skilled in design, engineering, project management, marketing or other discipline. Whilst still small, the skills required to operate all aspects may possibly be gained by the founder. In former, less complicated times this may have been true as the firm expanded, but the pace of change of technology, standards and legislation as well as in marketing and particularly in financial accounting necessitates constant learning and improvement. The huge range of applications and processes served by our industry just adds to this challenge.....

Shapa's Arkwright Student posts her second Blog

Reaching the end of a very busy Christmas term, we have lots to look back on, such as assisting backstage with the school play and Christmas concert, as well as designing and manufacturing the F1 in Schools Car....

SHAPA January Meeting

The next General meeting will be held on the 24th January at the George Hotel in Lichfield starting at 10:00
Find out about OEE and GDPR, along with all the usual networking oppertunities.
for more details email Ian at and download the agenda

Applications are invited for the 2018 Solids Handling Industry awards

Shapa has launched the 2018 Solids Handling Industry awards, these awards are now open to all UK registered member and non member companies and institutions operating in the Solids Handling and Processing Industry. Application forms will be  available direct from the website from 01/12/2017 and winners will be announced and presented at the awards ceremony in the evening of 17th April 2018 more information is available in the link

2018 Solids Handling Industry Awards

Details of the award catagories and award launch date have been announced, for further information follow the link

Solids Dortmund 2018

Details have been released regarding the international Solids Handling show to be held in Dortmund on the 7th and 8th November 2018, for more information please follow the  link

CHoPS 2018

**Abstracts deadline extended to 22-12-17 ** for more information follow the link

Financial Awarness Training

This course has been especially designed for Shapa members and will include content specifically related to our industry

Who should attend ?
Anyone involved in driving their business forward e.g Managing Directors, Directors/Managers & Account Managers etc , whatever their level of financial knowledge. The workshop is designed to enable everyone to take away practical tips and strategic insight suitable to their skills and experience, whether you are a beginner, intermediate or advanced. So join us for and inspiring and enjoyable day out.

Download the detailed information and a booking form,today

If you can return these back to  as soon as possible so I can make the necessary arrangements and  if you feel that this course would help with someone in your close supply chain please feel free to include them.