Smart feeding solutions for
dry bulk material and liquid process control
K-Tron Soder feeders provide high-accuracy feeding solutions to handle a wide range of ingredients from chocolate chips to fiberglass and from floodable powders to waxy liquids.
The K-Tron Soder product line includes volumetric feeders, loss-in-weight feeders, weigh belt feeders, Microfeeder and Compact Feeders, mass flowmeters and K4G multi-feeder gravimetric blenders for bulk solids and related controls for continuous or batch processes. These feeders are used in the plastics, chemical, detergent, food, pharmaceutical and other industries.
In principle, volumetric feeding is the simplest, most economical feeding solution available. Bulk material is held in a hopper and constantly fed into a process per unit of time. A gravimetric feed rate may be inferred through a calibration process where a timed sample is taken and weighed, and screw speed adjusted accordingly. Although there is no weight feedback to assure feeding accuracy over time, this may not be a concern for materials with consistent bulk density.
K-Tron offers a wide variety of single and twin screw volumetric feeders. With exchangeable screw design choices, you can handle a wide range of applications involving prefeeding, feeding or batching of materials with consistent density, particle size and moisture content.
In gravimetric feeding, dry bulk material or liquid is fed into a process at a constant weight per unit of time since weight is a variable that can be captured by a weighing module. Consistent control and complete monitoring are possible. In principle, gravimetric feeding combines monitoring of the feeding process with a feedback loop that enables accurate material control.
Single Screw Feeders handle free-flowing materials such as pellets and powders.
Twin Screw Feeders handle more difficult materials such as pigments, sticky, bridging or flooding powders, fibers and fiberglass.
The Feed Rates to meet a wide range of applications include TiO2, Pigments, Seasoning on potato chips, Pellets for plastic extrusion, Flocculating agents for wastewater, Oxides for mill charging, Vitamins in candy manufacture, Salt in cheese production, Additives for ice cream or baked goods.
Loss-in-weight Microfeeders are used for feeding micro ingredients in continuous or batch processes. Compact loss-in-weight feeders are used for laboratory applications, pilot projects, or feeding minor ingredients with high accuracy and recipe repeatability. Good for any low feed rate application where space is limited.
Loss-in-weight feeders are modular feeders for materials with varying bulk density and for material handling automation. These feeders are the best choice for long term accuracy, repeatability and quality documentation, and where dust control is a concern.
Use weigh belt feeders for gravimetric feeding at higher feed rates or where low headroom is a problem. Especially at high feed rates, a weigh belt feeder offers lower initial cost than a loss-in-weight feeder with equal throughput.
Use the Smart Flow Meter for metering, monitoring or totalization of bulk material flows, or as a feeder in high rate applications.
The K2G multi-feeder gravimetric blender offers a high accuracy multi-stream loss-in-weight feeding system for precise ratio control. The compact K2G system is designed to fit directly over the throat of an extruder.
Premier vacuum loaders and receivers are easily integrated into K-Tr on feeders as refill devices. Premier dilute phase and dense phase vacuum conveyors are available as stand alone units or in a central conveying system for conveying pellets or powders.
K-Tron's machine controllers and operator interfaces deliver full functional flexibility and the connectivity you need. The SmartConnex feeder control environment provides comprehensive control capability for systems up to 30 weigh belt feeders, loss-in-weight feeders, volumetric feeders, batchers, flow meters, Bulk Solids Pump™ (BSP) feeders or PID controlled devices.
The K-Tron Control Module (KCM) combines feeder control and motor drive modules into a compact new housing, offering more flexibility and excellent performance. Each feeder has its own KCM, generally mounted directly on the feeder, which is available in various configurations depending on the application. Control and motor drive modules are combined into one component and may be mounted at the feeder or remotely. Each KCM version comes with all the software needed for continuous or batch applications.
The K-Tron Control Module offers advanced features such as screw speed modulation with patented algorithm that can improve the short-term feeder accuracy on single screw feeders by up to a factor of two at low feed rates. Integrated refill control for Premier PCS self-contained vacuum loaders or single central receivers with HCU controls. Refill control can be handled through the feeder operator interface eliminating the need for the HSU programming unit.
Operator Interface Options
SmartConnex offers a choice of three operator interfaces: KSU-II Single Unit Display, K-Vision Line Control Display, and KSC Smart Commander for multiple line control. These display and data entry units can be employed individually or in combination as demanded by the application. For more information see our controls catalog page.
K-Tron Single Unit Display II (KSU-II)
The KSU-II is an economical user interface for single feeders with KCM. It can also be used as a portable display for maintenance or configuration in larger systems where the feeder's primary display point is a higher level unit. The KSU-II can be dedicated to a single feeder or it can network to multiple KCMs. The KSU-II will only view one feeder at a time, but the user can switch between feeders. Up to three KSU-II operator interfaces can be linked to a network of up to 31 KCM's. Each KSU-II can be programmed to access a different KCM.
K-Vision™ Single Line Controller
K-Vision™ is a feeder operator interface for controlling up to 16 feeders in a single process line, replacing the KSL. K-Vision uses a 10.4-inch color LCD display together with a touchscreen as the primary operator input mechanism. It offers a quad screen display mode for viewing multiple pages on one feeder or a single page on multiple feeders. Support for multiple languages, including Chinese and Japanese, is included. Designed for simple operation and fast and easy start-up, K-Vision offers graphic visualization of process information, utilizing flexible, easy to use trend graphs. This feeder interface offers event logging and supports all of the different feeding control types for both continuous and batch operation.
K-Tron Smart Commander (KSC)
The KSC is a PC-based interface able to control up to 30 units in multiple process lines. Feeder, line and system-wide data is graphically displayed and includes historical trends, statistical control, recipe commands, diagnostics, help, and much more. An industrial PC with KSC-Software inside the SmartConnex™ control system controls up to 30 K-Tron feeders including weigh belt and loss-in-weight feeders or batch feeders as well as PID, SFM and SFB components in both continuous and batch modes reliably according to registered setpoint values.