- Rotary Drum Vacuum Filters


Komline-Sanderson continuous rotary drum vacuum filters offer great flexibility in meeting the needs of producers of many products requiring the separation of liquids from solids. Our experience ranges from simple separations to complex multi-stage applications involving filtration, clarification, extraction, cake washing, and drying.

The rotary drum vacuum filter offers:

  • Continuous Operation
  • Application Versatility
  • Wide Range of Sizes

The Komline-Sanderson Rotary Drum Vacuum Filter is applied to process and waste slurries for filtering, clarifying, cake washing and extraction, and dewatering. Industries served by K-S include inorganic and organic chemicals, pharmaceuticals and biotech, plastics, food products, minerals, electric power and other utilities. Specific process applications are referenced in the Design Section.

How does it work?

The process of the RDVF is continuous. Each revolution of the drum consists of cake formation, cake washing (if needed), dewatering or drying, and cake discharge.

  1. As the drum rotates, it is partially submerged in the feed slurry.
  2. Vacuum draws liquid through the filter medium (cloth) on the drum surface which retains the solids. Vacuum is applied using a liquid ring vacuum pump or other means.
  3. The vacuum pulls air (or gas) through the cake and continues to remove moisture as the drum rotates.
  4. Finally, the cake is discharged from the drum to a conveyor or chute to the next process step.
  5. The filtrate and air pulled through the medium flow through internal filtrate pipes and pass though the rotary valve and into the filtrate receiver.
  6. The liquid stream is separated from the vapor stream in the receiver.
  7. Liquid filtrate is then pumped to the next step in the process.

If required, the cake can be washed to remove impurities or to extract more product. Additional drying of the cake follows washing.

How do I know if an RDVF is right for my process?

If your process involves any of the following, then the Komline-Sanderson Rotary Drum Vacuum Filter may fit your needs.

  • Continuous separation of solid and liquid
  • Solid or Liquid Product recovery
  • Clarification of liquid product
  • Cake washing for cake purity or liquid product extraction
  • Clarification of a wastewater stream

Our equipment requires minimal operator attention as well as low maintenance time and expense, and is designed and built for long equipment life.

If you can relate to these objectives, then follow these steps:

  • Establish process inlet and outlet conditions as accurately as possible
  • Complete the K-S Applications Questionnaire
  • Contact us to assist in making a preliminary selection
  • Perform lab and/or pilot scale testing if necessary
  • Make final selection

Other important considerations:

  • What is immediately upstream and downstream of the filter?
  • What is most important: cake solids, filtrate clarity, capital or operating cost, etc.?
  • What have you tried before? Why did/didn't it work?
  • What materials of construction are acceptable? What are not?
  • Do you need auxiliary equipment?
  • Do you need any instrumentation or controls?
  • Do you have any standard specifications?

There are many factors affecting the operation of a filtration process. Among these are the need for chemical pretreatment; the need for precoat or filter aid; power, water, air, or other utilities; operator attention; cleaning requirements; and maintenance needs. All of these should be considered when selecting a filter.

K-SRDVF offers
  • Continuous operation
  • Application versatility
  • Ease of operation, requiring minimal attention
  • Simple, durable design for low maintenance and long life
  • Wide Range of Sizes
How can we help you?

Komline-Sanderson has been a leader in liquid/solid separation equipment design and manufacturing for over 60 years, meeting the needs of both industrial and municipal clients. Our filters operate worldwide in an ever-growing range of process and wastewater applications. Expert process insight, outstanding customer service and high quality equipment make K-S a valuable partner throughout the project cycle.

Lab and pilot testing service is available to assist in equipment selection and sizing. Testing is also used to determine cake washing needs or other operating aspects.

RDVF Cake Discharge Types

The rotary vacuum filter discharges its filter cake using one of several arrangements. A discharge mechanism is selected based on the process material characteristics and on how readily it releases from the filter media.

K-S Flexibelt® discharge features a filter belt that passes over a variable speed discharge roll with raised helix for positive cake removal. It is typically applied:

  • Where filter medium washing is required to prevent blinding.
  • For the discharge of thin cakes.
  • For dry cake discharge or sluice (wet) cake discharge.

Typical Flexibelt® Discharge Applications

  • Corn Gluten
  • Starch
  • Pharmaceuticals
  • Fermentation Broths
  • Pigments
  • Organic/Inorganic Chemicals
  • Water Softening Sludge
  • Steel Mill Waste
  • Hydroxide Sludge
  • Industrial Wastewater

The Precoat discharge is used when direct filtration against a cloth medium is not possible because the cake cannot be removed from the cloth or when blinding is indicated. It is typically used:

  • For slimy, sticky, oily and blinding solids.
  • For clear filtrates.
  • For filtering dilute slurries with varying feed concentrations.
  • For the discharge of very thin filter cakes.

Typical Precoat Discharge Applications

  • Corn Syrup Clarification
  • Fruit Juices and Wines
  • Pharmaceuticals
  • Fermentation Broths
  • Food Processing Wastes
  • Hydroxide Sludge
  • Slop Oil
  • Flexographic Ink Wastes
  • Industrial Wastewater

Scraper Discharge

Scraper discharge is usually used along with air blowback to release the filter cake from the cloth just above the scraper. It is used:

  • For fast filtering materials.
  • For filtering/dewatering granular or crystalline solids.
  • For discharging cakes in excess of 1/4' thick.
  • For non-blinding cakes where cloth washing is not required.

Typical Scraper Discharge Applications

  • Flue Gas Desulfurization (FGD) Scrubber Sludge
  • FGD Gypsum Dewatering and Cake Washing for Wallboard
  • Inorganic Chemicals and Minerals
  • Pigment Processing
  • Plastics Resins (Polymers)
  • Calcium Compounds
  • Titanium Dioxide
  • Edible Oil Dewaxing

Roll Discharge

Roll discharge filter is usually fitted with a very tight filter medium to retain very small particles and is used:

  • For discharging very thin, sticky (tacky) cakes.
  • For discharging dilatent and thixotropic materials.
  • For applications with very small particle sizes.

Typical Roll Discharge Applications

  • Kaolin Clay
  • Titanium Dioxide
  • Pigments
  • Ceramic Materials
  • Magnesium Hydroxide

String Discharge

String discharge filters utilize closely spaced parallel strings to lift the cake from the cloth. The strings then pass over a discharge roll and the cake is released. Since no mechanical wear occurs to the filter medium, long life is assured. It is used:

  • For discharging cohesive cakes.
  • For discharging gelatinous cakes.

Typical String Discharge Applications

  • Starch
  • Fruit Juice
  • Fermentation Broths
  • Mineral Processing

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