Novel applications of ultrasonic atomization in the manufacturing of fine chemicals, pharmaceuticals, and medical devices

Haripriya Naidu, Ozan Kahraman, Hao Feng

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Liquid atomization as a fluid disintegration method has been used in many industrial applications such as spray drying, coating, incineration, preparation of emulsions, medical devices, etc. The usage of ultrasonic energy for atomizing liquid is gaining interest as a green and energy-efficient alternative to traditional mechanical atomizers. In the past two decades, efforts have been made to explore new applications of ultrasonic misting for downstream separation of chemicals, e.g., bioethanol, from their aqueous solutions. Downstream separation of a chemical from its aqueous solutions is known to be an energy-intensive process. Conventional distillation is featured by low energy efficiency and inability to separate azeotropic mixtures, and thus novel alternatives, such as ultrasonic separation have been explored to advance the separation technology. Ultrasonic misting has been reported to generate mist and vapor mixture in a gaseous phase that is enriched in solute (e.g., ethanol), under non-thermal, non-equilibrium, and phase change free conditions. This review article takes an in-depth look into the recent advancements in ultrasound-mediated separation of organic molecules, especially bioethanol, from their aqueous solutions. An effort was made to analyze and compare the experimental setups used, mist collection methods, droplet size distribution, and separation mechanism. In addition, the applications of ultrasonic atomization in the production of pharmaceuticals and medical devices are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number105984
JournalUltrasonics Sonochemistry
StatePublished - May 2022


  • Distillation
  • Ethanol
  • Ultrasonic atomization
  • Ultrasonic misting

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemical Engineering (miscellaneous)
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Inorganic Chemistry
  • Acoustics and Ultrasonics
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Organic Chemistry


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