Stirred Reactors: The Ultimate FAQ Guide

This guide covers every aspect about stirred reactors such as classifications, quality, specification, working process or material choice – everything is right here.

So, before you invest in a new stirred reactor, read this guide.

Table of contents hide

What are Stirred Reactors?

Stirred reactors are devices that you can use in completing batch reactions without fluid or solid flow through the reactor.

You will use it for liquid/solid or liquid/solid/gas reactions which suspend the solid catalyst in powder and inert or reactant liquids.

 Stirred reactor

Stirred reactor

What are Continuous Stirred Tank Reactors?

Continuous stirred tank reactors are devices that run in a steady state with a continuous flow of products and reactants.

It assumes a uniform composition throughout the entire reaction process with similar composition in the tank and exit stream.

What are the Benefits of Using the Continuous Stirred Tank Reactors?

You will experience a lot of benefits that you will enjoy by using the continuous stirred tank reactors.

Here are some of the advantages you will enjoy by using the continuous stirred reactors.

· Easy to Use and Operate

You will have a good time trying to operate the continuous stirred tank reactors since it is easy to operate.

It has a user friendly control system which will allow you to control all the aspects such as temperature control efficiently.

· Cheaper Option to Construct

You can also construct your own custom continuous stirred tank reactor, according to your personal specifications.

It is one of the easiest and cheapest devices that you can do with very little effort.

· Large Heat Capacity

You will also enjoy the high heat capacity that comes as part of the continuous stirred tank reactor.

It allows you to extend your applications to extents that can comfortably accommodate higher heat capacities.

· Easy to Access

You will also have an easy time when it comes to cleaning and maintaining the continuous stirred reactors.

This is because it is one of the easiest devices that you can have access to the interior parts.

What are the Limitations of Using the Continuous Stirred Tank Reactors?

Well, you should also expect to encounter a few hitches when using the continuous stirred reactors.

Here are some of the limitations of using the continuous stirred reactors.

· Low Conversion Rate

The rate of conversion of one product to another is usually quite slow in comparison to other reactors.

Apart from that, it delivers very little amounts of substances in comparison to other types of reactors.

· Prone to Development of Dead Zones

You may also go through particular moments where dead zones occur on the continuous stirred tank reactors.

In this case, there will be no mixing of ingredients that will occur, thus affecting the entire process.

· Bypass of Reactants

In some cases, reactants often by-pass especially if you place the outlet improperly during the assembly process.

What are the Components of the Continuous Stirred Tank Reactors?

Continuous stirred tank reactors have numerous parts that work together to enable proper processing of reactants.

Here are the main parts of the continuous stirred reactors that enable proper reactions.

Continous tank stirred reactor

Continuous tank stirred reactor

· Tank

It has a tank where most of the reaction takes place.

The tanks are often of constant volume and can accommodate different capacities of reactants.

· Stirring System

You will depend on the steering system to ensure that all the reactants are mixed well.

You have the power to adjust the speed at which the steering system moves while it mixes the reactants.

· Feed and Exit Pipes

You will use the feed pipes to feed the reactants into the tank of the continuous stirred tank reactors.

The exit pipes are responsible for eliminating or removing the processed reactants.

· Mixer Drive

This is the part of the continuous stirred reactors, which are responsible for rotating the steering system.

You can control the speed of the mixer drives from the control panel to determine the speed of the steering system.

· Legs or Base

It also has legs which provide the right support that the continuous stirred tank reactors need during the operation process.

The legs are capable of maintaining the continuous stirred reactors in an upright position, even in seismic and windy conditions.

· Water Jacket

This is a container/jacket that you will fill up with water that will help in the maintenance of constant reactor temperatures.

It is available in different capacities depending on the capacity of the continuous stirred tank reactors.

How Does the Continuous Stirred Tank Reactor Work?

It is very important to learn about how the continuous stirred tank reactor works for a successful operation.

Here is a step by step guide that you will follow to comfortably operate a continuous stirred tank reactor.

1) Introduction of the Reactants

First, you will prepare the type of reactants that you would like to mix within the continuous stirred reactors.

You will measure the reactants accurately into different quantities and then add them through the inlet pipe.

At the same time, you must remember to program the continuous stirred reactors accordingly.

Implying that you will set the operating temperatures, density and even the speed of the mixers among other key specifications.

2) Mixing of the Reactants

As soon as you complete the first step, you will proceed to the mixing stage where all the reactants will be mixed.

At this point the steering system will take over and mix all the reactants in the tank.

Depending on the mixing speed, the steering system will mix all the reactants continuously without stopping.

The time it takes will depend on the type of reactants you are mixing using the continuous stirred tank reactors.

3) Exit of Reactants

Finally, your continuous stirred tank reactants will allow the homogenous mixture to exit through the exit pipes.

You will note that the continuous stirred tank reactant maintains proper temperature and density among others throughout.

What is a Jet – Stirred Reactor?

Jet-stirred reactors are types of continuous stirred tank devices that you will use for gas-phase studies.

You can use the jet-stirred reactors in the study of oxidation as well as paralysis of oxygenated fuels and hydrocarbon.

How Do You Classify the Stirred Reactors According to the Energy Input?

You will realize that most reactants are classified according to their energy inputs.

Here are the three main classifications of stirred reactors.

· Mechanically Stirred Reactors

This is the most versatile type of stirred reactor, among all the other types of stirred reactors.

You can employ it in different industrial applications such as the production of different antibiotics.

· Hydrodynamic Reactors

This is a type of deep jet reactor that has an external liquid pump.

You can apply this type of stirring reactor in varied industrial applications such as yeast production for animal feed.

· Pneumatic Reactors

The pneumatic reactors employ the working principle of gas compression to key in the right levels of energy inputs.

You will use the airlift reactors with external or internal recirculation for sewage recirculation or production of yeast.

Which Specifications should you Consider when Choosing a Stirred Reactor?

You need to have a proper plan by having the right technical specifications before you choose a stirred reactor.

Here are some of the specifications that you need to pay close attention to.

· Nature of Substrate or Reactants

You should know the nature of the substrates or reactants that you intend to mix using the stirred reactors.

This is because, different stirred reactors are responsible for mixing different type of substrates and reactants.

· Flow Behavior (Rheology)

You will also decide on the type of flow behavior that your stirred reactor will have included the type of fluid and broth viscosity.

The main types of flow behavior that you can choose from include Viscoelastic, Newtonian, Bingham plastic or pneumatic plastic.

· Mixing Requirements

Here, you will look at the mixing requirements of your application before you choose a particular type of stirring reactor.

It means that differences stirred reactors have varying mixing specifications that work for different mixing conditions.

· Heat Transfer Needs

You should consider the heat transfer needs of your application as you choose the right type of stirring reactors.

It is important to note that different applications have varying heat transfer needs that will work for different stirred reactors.


It is important to look at how flexible your industrial applications and processes are before choosing a stirred reactor.

You can opt for a flexible stirred reactor which will allow you to shift from one type of reactants mixture to another comfortably.

What are the Main Applications of the Stirred Reactors?

You will use the stirred reactors in different industrial applications such as homogenous liquid-phase flow reactions.

You can employ them in a battery or a series in a wide range of applications including:

  • Pharmaceutical Industry as loop reactors
  • Biological Processes such as high-density animal cell structure research.
  • Aeration and oxidation processes
  • Catalyst and Enzymatic Processes
  • Concentration and Crystallization Process
  • Dispersion, Dissolution as well as Distillation Processes
  • Fusion and Fermentation Processes
  • Homogenization Processes

How Much Do Stirred Reactors Cost?

You must know the type of stirred reactor that you would like to purchase before you look at the budget.

In other words, you need to have a proper plan on the stirred reactor specifications before you begin budgeting.

This is because there are different types of stirred reactors in the industry available at varying costs.

In general, you should have approximately 1000 to 100000 US dollars in place as you choose on the type of reactors.

How Do You Verify the Quality of the Stirred Reactors?

You can verify the quality of the stirred reactors by looking at the adherence to international quality standards.

Apart from that, you should perform specific tests on the stirred reactor with particular quality points of reference.

With high quality stirred reactors, you will increase the efficiency of the machine as well as your bottom line.

In that case, you will verify the quality of the standard reactors through:

  • Factory Audits of the Stirred Reactors
  • Live Inspection of the Stirred Reactors
  • Testing of the Stirred Reactors
  • Loading Inspections of the Stirred Reactors

You can also conduct on machine verification of the stirred reactors for controlling the quality of tooling and machined parts.

Which is the Best Material for Making the Stirred Reactors?

Stirred tank reactor

 Stirred tank reactor

There are quite a number of construction materials that you can use in the process of manufacturing stirred reactors.

Here is a list of all the materials that you will use in making the stirred reactors.

  • Austenitic Stainless-Steel Materials
  • Super Austenitic Stainless-Steel Materials
  • Duplex and Super duplex Stainless-Steel Materials
  • Nickel Alloys and Superalloys Materials
  • Titanium Materials
  • Cladding Materials

You will use the above materials for making different types of stirred reactors with varying properties.

Since the above materials have varying specifications, you will definitely expect the stirred reactor to have different properties.

How Do the Batch Reactors Compare to the Stirred Reactors?

Batch reactors are the simplest types of reactors which you can use in mixing of different types of reactants.

Batch reactors do not reach steady states and you have to control temperature, volume, as well as pressure.

Apart from that, you will use the batch reactors in small scale production using biological materials such as brewing.

On the other hand, stirred reactors, you will mix different types of reagents which ca either be solid, liquid or gas.

In this case, the stirred reactor will maintain all the reaction properties within the device all through the reaction process.

The time that the stirred reactors take to successfully mix different types of reactants will vary considerably.

What is the Difference Between the Plug Flow Reactor and the Stirred Reactor?

In plug flow reactors or continuous tubular reactors, you will mix different types of fluid reagents.

In this case, the rate of changing reactions creates different gradients with respect to the traversed distance.

Apart from that, as the concentration of the said reactants decrease, the concentration of the resultant product increases.

On the flip side, stirred reactors are also responsible for mixing of different types of reactants.

The main difference is in the fact that it will maintain the properties of the reactants throughout the mixing process.

 Plug flow reactor

Stirred tank reactor

How Do Semi-Batch Reactors Compare to the Stirred Reactors?

In this case, the semi-batch reactors combine both continuous stirred reactants and batch reactant mixing techniques.

It employs the batch reaction process in the mixing of different reactants while continuously releasing particular products through the outlet.

For instance, you can load it with a batch of microbes and different mediums which will mix and release carbon dioxide constantly.

Stirred reactors, on the other hand, adds particular types of reactants to the tanks and maintains the reaction properties throughout.

You will also use it in the mixing of different types of fluid reagents as well as solids just like the semi-batch reactors.

What is the Difference Between the Catalytic Reactors Compare to the Stirred Reactors?

You can implement the catalytic rectors as plug flow reactors even though it requires treatments that are more complicated.

In this case, rates of catalytic reactions are directly proportional to the quantity of reagents in contact with the catalyst.

In other words, most of the chemical reaction success in the catalytic reactors will depend greatly on the catalyst.

In contrast with catalytic reactors, you will mix different types of reactants but with very little emphasis on the catalysts.

The main factor in this process is the maintenance of continuous reaction specifications through the whole process.

Which Quality Specifications Do Stirred Reactors Adhere To?

You must also confirm that the stirred reactors are of the right quality standards through tests.

Apart from that, you will also ensure that you conduct your tests using the international quality standard specifications.

Here are the main quality specifications that your stirred reactors must adhere to.

  • PED Quality Certification
  • PARR Quality Specifications
  • CSA SMTC Quality Certifications
  • TPS ACT Certification (CUE Mark)
  • CE Quality Certification
  • ASME Quality Certifications

What are the Main Features of the Stirred Reactors?

The main features of the stirred reactors that you must pay close attention to are:

 Continous stirred reactor

 Continuous stirred reactor

  • The design range of the stirred reactors, which range from full vacuum to different bar grams.
  • Design temperature form which will vary according to the type of stirred reactors
  • Type of heating and cooling jackets such as heating jackets with double coils
  • Power requirements that can go as much as 300 kW or even more
  • Type of agitation which can be laminar or turbulent depending on the stirred reactor

As you can see, there are many factors you should consider before buying stirred reactors.

The best part, this guide has explained everything you need to know.

Still, if you have any question, the FilSon Filters team is here to help.

Contact us now for any inquiries.

Scroll to Top