Anatomy of a Disc Pelletizer

This article was authored by:

Chris Kozicki
Agglomeration Expert

The disc pelletizer, or pan granulator, is an ideal agglomeration solution when looking to create a uniform pellet product from dry or slightly moist materials. Producing a premium granular product, the disc pelletizer is favored among manufacturers producing everything from soil amendments to chemical products.

The following provides an overview on the basic construction of this essential type of pelletizing equipment.

Note: Some features may be specific to FEECO International design and fabrication procedures. All FEECO disc pelletizers are held to rigorous quality standards to ensure reliability and equipment longevity.

Standard Disc Pelletizer Components

The disc pelletizer can be broken down into several basic components:


The base is fabricated using structural members and heavy welded plates, providing a solid foundational structure.

Disc Pelletizer Base

Disc pelletizer base in fabrication

Drive Unit

The drive unit consists of automated mechanisms such as the motor, parallel or concentric shaft reducer, and V-belt drive. Both the motor and the reducer are mounted on a bracket behind the disc. The disc is then mounted to the reducer’s output shaft.

Disc Pelletizer Base with Drive Unit

The disc pelletizer base with the drive mounted and ready for disc placement


The disc, also referred to as the pan, is constructed of heavy-duty carbon steel plates and can range in size from 24 inches to upwards of 25 feet. The plates are welded and reinforced to strengthen the overall structure.

Discs larger than six feet in diameter are lined with expanded metal to promote a wear layer of material. Included in the disc system is a hand-wheel-operated jacking screw. This device allows for easy adjustment of the disc’s horizontal angle from 40° to 60°.

Disc Pelletizer Disc With Expanded Metal

The disc, along with the plow support system (described below), mounted onto the base. Expanded metal on the disc is also visible.

Plows / Scrapers

Plows and scrapers are independently mounted vane-type components that control the material layer as it tumbles over the surface of the disc. The scrapers of larger diameter discs are covered with a ceramic, wear-resistant coating/facing that protects the scraper from abrasive materials.

Plow Support

The plow support is constructed of heavy, welded, structural members. It is fabricated to provide rigidity to the disc support system and permit quick adjustments to the disc angle without requiring a separate plow adjustment.

Spray System

The spray system dispenses liquids and binders onto the disc. The system consists of spray nozzles, needle valves, pressure gauges, pipe connections, and spray lines.

Disc Pelletizer Plows and Spray System

Spray system and plows mounted on a disc pelletizer

Disc Pelletizer Spray System

Disc pelletizer spray system pressure gauges with spray lines attached

Feed and Discharge Chutes

A feed chute (optional) directs material onto the disc while a discharge chute directs material as it exits the disc.

Pelletizer Feed Chute

Feed chute on a disc pelletizer. The spray lines, along with the plow support system, can also be seen.

Disc Pelletizer Construction

FEECO Disc Pelletizer

Optional Disc Pelletizer Components

FEECO delivers custom disc pelletizers built to meet the needs of any product specification. This includes a variety of optional components and modifications, including:

Disc Material Options

In addition to carbon steel, discs are also available in stainless steel, which protects against corrosive materials.

Hard Surface Scrapers

Hard surface scrapers, a standard feature on smaller disc pelletizers, are also available on larger pelletizers.

Hopper Liner

To avoid sticking or to increase wear resistance, the hopper can be lined with a UHMW (ultra high molecular weight) thermoplastic.

Inclinometer Indicator

An inclinometer indicator displays the degree of the disc’s incline.

Partial and Full Discharge Cover Hoods

Partial and full discharge cover hoods minimize dusting issues that can occur as material travels across the disc and through the discharge chute.

Hooded Disc Pelletizer

Disc pelletizer with dust hood complete with observation windows

Powered Angle Adjustment

The powered angle adjustment option automatically changes the disc’s incline (used in place of the hand-wheel-operated jacking screw).

Specialty Spray Configurations

A number of special spraying options are available to vary the delivery of liquids and binders. These options are customizable and differ based on material and process application considerations.

Variable Frequency Drive

The variable frequency drive allows for adjustments to the rotational speed of the disc.

Zero Speed Switch

The zero speed switch indicates whether the disc is rotating or not.

Disc Pelletizing System Solutions

In addition to the industry’s best custom disc pelletizers, FEECO offers a range of additional equipment and services to complete your pelletizing plant needs. This includes feasibility testing and process development testing, comprehensive parts and service support, as well as industrial drying systems, bulk material handling equipment, and pin and pugmill mixers.

For more information on pelletizing equipment, contact us today!

About the Author . . .

Chris Kozicki is a Process Sales Engineer and agglomeration expert.

More About Chris

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