A Sweet Solution to Sugar Drying

Sugar is a common product found in kitchens all around the world. In order to create a consistent final product, a great deal of processing is required. A major step in sugar processing is an industrial drying system. Sugar drying is traditionally achieved using high-grade equipment to produce a consistent, quality product.

A typical sugar refining process begins by dissolving raw sugar crystals to make a syrup. The syrup is then combined with clarifying agents to remove impurities, such as lumps and discoloration. The now purified syrup is concentrated and repeatedly crystallized before it is centrifuged to produce a familiar white refined sugar.

During the drying process, the moisture and other volatile compounds must be removed by a dust collection system. It is also important to mitigate any dust clouds from forming during the handling and transport of sugar, as it presents a significant combustion hazard. Equipment selection, system design, and good housekeeping are essential when working with and transporting sugar.


The customer approached AAF to design a dust capture solution off their rotary drum that was currently being used to dry sugar prior to its long term storage in silos. The drying process was sticky and humid, causing issues for standard filter-based dust collectors. The sugar dust was also highly combustible which required the addition of costly fire detection and prevention accessories for most dust collectors. Finally, the customer wanted a method to collect and re-use any entrained product.


After consulting with the customer and reviewing their process and operation, AAF recommended a Rotoclone® N Arrangment D be installed. This wet collector eliminates the need for costly fire prevention measures and because it uses water as the filtration media, it can handle moist, sticky dust streams that traditional filter based dust collectors can not. Finally, since the sugar is soluble in water, any product collected by the dust collector can be routed back upstream in the process and recycled. Thus eliminating costly loss of product.


The unit and control system supplied by AAF solved each issue the customer faced in their process. The Rotoclone® N is an ideal dust collector for sticky and moist dust streams, thus eliminating costly maintenance associated with changing filter elements. The wet filtration technology used by the Rotoclone® N eliminated the combustion hazard and the control scheme provided with the unit allowed the customer to save valuable product collected by the dust collection system.