Kerry D. Johanson
Ph.D., 1994, Brigham Young University (Chemical Eng.)
Courtesy Faculty
Ph : 352-303-9123
Fax : 352-846-1196
205 Particle Sci. & Tech.
Faculty Web Page
Reduction of segregation in process plants
Effect of cohesion on flow profiles and solids wall loads
Effect of bulk solid strength on hang-ups in bins and hoppers
Effect of air injection on overcoming cohesive hangups and limiting flow rates

Our current research addresses key problems of cohesive powder flows. Pharmaceutical, food, and nutraceutical industries must produce consistent products which are often a mixture of cohesive and non-cohesive materials of varying particle size. Blending is a primary unit operation. However, blender scale-up is currently impossible. Scale-up requires separating the influence of material properties from that of blender geometry and operation mode. The key to predictive capability is to determine the influence of material properties on local velocity profiles, and the relationship between velocity profile and blender residence time distribution functions. Current research focuses on unraveling these relationships.

Pharmaceuticals and foods tend to gain cohesive strength when stored, resulting in extensive flow problems during handling. These problems cause significant unscheduled process/plant downtimes. Current research includes determining key relationships between cohesive powder behavior and particle scale events such as caking (growth of crystalline structures between particles) or cohesive strength caused by capillary and van der Waal’s forces between particles.

Our research scope extends to determining the coherence length of bulk solid materials as they shear. This work examines how the structure of bulk mixtures may affect bulk properties. The goal is to build a link between bulk behavior, powder structure, and the inter-particle forces that can be controlled by modifying surface characteristics.

Recent Publications
1. Johanson, K, “Predicting cone-in-Cone Blender Efficiencies from Key Material Properties,” Powder Technology, 170 (2006) 108.
2. Johanson, K., Eckert, C., Ghose, D., Djomlija, M. and Hubert, M., “Quantitative Measurement of Particle Segregation Mechanisms,” Powder Technology, 159 (2005) 1.
3 Johanson, K and Francis, T., “Chapter 13: Powder Flow Properties”, Encapsulated and Powdered Foods, Ed. C. Onwulata (2005) 331.
4. Bilgili, E., Yepes, J., Stephenson, L., Johanson, K. and Scarlett, B., “Stress Homogeneity in Powder Specimens Tested in the Jenike Shear Cell: Myth or Fact,” Part. Syst. Charact., 21 (2004) 293.
5. Johanson, K. “Rathole Stability Analysis for Aerated Powder Materials,” Powder Technology, 141 (2004) 161.