Definition - What does Deflocculation mean?

Deflocculation is the process by which the solids that are stuck together are dispersed either by electrolyte concentration, raising the pH of the slurry, or adding thinners or dispersants to the system. Through the dispersion process the particles are usually broken down into fine particles. It is also defined as the act of reducing the viscosity of a suspension by adding a thinning agent, also known as a deflocculant.

Petropedia explains Deflocculation

Deflocculation process is completely opposite to flocculation process. Flocculation process, also called coagulation or agglomeration process is a procedure whereby colloids are extracted from suspensions which then take the form of flake or floc. This can take place spontaneously or may be brought about by adding clarifying agents. This process is different from precipitation in the sense that before flocculation, colloids are simply suspended within the liquid and not dissolved within the solution. In a system that promotes flocculation, there is no cake formation because all flocs are suspended. Flocculation is used for water purification, and can even be used to extract certain corrosive elements from water.

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