Project Synopsis

Evaluate / troubleshoot an existing cosmetics powder manufacturing process to identify improvement opportunities and develop corrective measure process design solutions.

Project Summary


The client is a worldwide manufacturer of inks and pigments, with a plant in the U.S. that manufactures powders for use as ingredients in cosmetic applications.  A new process was recently installed to manufacture a cosmetic-grade powdered pigment.  Since commissioning, this process has resulted in a lower than expected yield of the final product, along with a higher-than-expected amount of operator manhours required to meet production requirements.  Process Engineering Associates, LLC (PROCESS) was contracted to troubleshoot the new process and provide recommendations to achieve the desired yield and manpower requirements.

Specific tasks for this project included:

  • A site visit and field walkdown to examine the layout and equipment characteristics of the new process
  • A technical evaluation of the various solids handling equipment items (paddle blenders, sack unloaders, hammer mills, a dust collector, and drum loading stations) to identify the causes of the yield losses and increased manpower requirements
  • Identification of changes to existing equipment, or specification of new equipment, that would bring process yields and manpower requirements back into the ranges originally anticipated
  • Assistance in documenting specifications for any new equipment to support solicitation of vendor quotes
  • A review of the existing and new equipment for compliance with NFPA combustible dust standards
  • Reports that included a technical assessment of the root causes of the reduced yields and increased manpower requirements, recommendations for process improvements, and identification of changes to existing equipment or features needed for new equipment to meet NFPA combustible dust requirements.

Industry Type

  • Cosmetics Manufacturing

Utilized Skills

  • Process improvement evaluation
  • Process troubleshooting
  • Powder production systems process design.

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