batch processing vs continuous flow processing

Batch Processing vs. Continuous Flow Processing

Corporations and small businesses have long sought better approaches to material processing. One of the main topics of debate is that of batch processing vs. continuous flow. 

Batch Processing

Batch processing involves the processing of bulk material in groups through each step of the process. Processing of subsequent batches must wait until the current is finished. 

Perhaps the most definite advantage of batch production is the lower initial setup cost. It’s considered easier and cheaper to implement a holistic system of batch processing equipment (although this is not always true). Batch processing also allows you to set up each process uniquely, to adapt to the materials you’re working with. If your foundry, mining operation, or bulk processing facility needs to differentiate the flow for each “batch,” this may be ideal. For example, batch processing is often used with rare and sensitive metals, like raw titanium. Raw titanium must have its usable materials extracted before being used to manufacture products, for which batch processing via the Kroll Process. This process is ideal because the current batch must be finished before subsequent ones can take place. 

Batch processing may also be required in pharmaceutical or packaging industries where federal oversights dictate the quality and standards for processing (learn more in-depth here in a separate blog). However, continuous flow is becoming a more viable option for these industries, thanks to advancements in design and technology.

The downside to batch processing

Because batch processing goes much slower, the overall cost of processing goes up. Starting up and using batch equipment can also increase energy consumption and the quality discrepancy between batches goes up. This can lead to lost production and compromised quality if the batch process isn’t monitored closely. 

Continuous Flow

The continuous flow process involves moving one work unit at a time between each step of the process — with no breaks in time, sequence, substance, or extent. For most applications, continuous flow saves time, energy, and costs and when implemented correctly, it can:

  • Reduce waste
  • Save money by reducing inventory and transportation costs
  • Increase productivity by completing more units in less time
  • Improve quality by making it easier to spot and correct errors
  • Cut down on overhead via increased stability and reduced lead times
  • Adapt to customer needs more effectively than batch processing

Potential Roadblocks With Continuous Flow Processing

While continuous flow is an ideal process for many applications, certain materials, such as titanium, demand a batch processing approach. Continuous flow may also increase the risk of contamination of materials, which matters more in industries such as pharmaceutical, food processing, or others. However,  these risks mostly increase due to improper implementation and use. Thanks to better design and technology, continuous flow processing can offer much faster operation, better materials quality, and scalability to support your operation.

Continuous Flow in Different Applications

The advantages of continuous flow processing in mining and material processing, especially, are clear. Mining and foundry operations can save time, process more material, and expend less energy. Since the processes and machinery involved are heavy-duty, the savings become quite substantial. The end result is a leaner, cost-effective business model, with a consistent standard for material production. Find out how General Kinematics helped a company fixed their inefficiency with continuous flow. 

4 Responses to “Batch Processing vs. Continuous Flow Processing”

  1. Avatar

    I thought that it was interesting when you said that the downside to using batch processing is that it will consume a lot of energy and end up costing a lot of money. I have been thinking about starting my own processing and manufacturing business but I have been worried about the cost. I will be sure to consider finding another way to complete my tasks so that I can ensure energy-efficiency and save money.

  2. Avatar
    John Wright

    `This is best one article so far I have read online. I would like to appreciate you for making it very simple and easy. Keep posting such kind of blogs as they are really informative, wish you good luck for your future blogs and hope they receive as much appraisal as you have got now.

  3. Avatar
    fuson cncmachining

    Thanks for writing this great article for us. I have gained good stuff from this website. Looking forward to your next article. I am happy to share this post to my friends. Keep it up.

Leave a Reply

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

Related GK News

General Kinematics Celebrates 60 Years of Innovation 

For Immediate Release General Kinematics Marketing Dept.: (815) 444-3521 marketing@generalkinematics.com   FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: General Kinematics Celebrates 60 Years of Innovation  This September, General Kinematics honors its 60th anniversary. GK thanks its employees, customers, and community for their continued support! It is the culmination of talent from every GK employee that has led General Kinematics […]

Read More
general-kinematics-location

COVID-19: A Message from the President

UPDATE 4/28/2020: General Kinematics Corporation is Open. Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker has extended the state’s “Stay at Home” through the end of May. While full details have not been released, what appears clear is we will continue to service our customers without delays. From the onset of this global pandemic, our employees have made it their priority […]

Read More
GK ConExpo 2020

GK Shakes It Up At CONEXPO/CONAGG

As one of the leaders of vibratory process equipment, General Kinematics had a strong presence in both the aggregate and C&D Markets at this year’s CONEXPO/CONAGG Show. General Kinematics presented their new Aggregate Screen along with the Rod Deck Screen. Both attracted a steady flow of inquiries from interested potential aggregate and C&D customers.  GK’s aggregate […]

Read More