Request for Proposal
Status: RFP is Closed

Automated Powder Mixing Equipment

Request Number
Due Date
Sep 25, 2018
Program Manager


Joint Development, Technology Acquisition, Technology Licensing, Supply Agreement, To Be Negotiated


Opportunity to partner with a multi-billion dollar North American production company


Phase 1 – Assessment of responses: Q3/Q4 2018

Phase 2 – Demonstration of technology: Q4 2018/Q1 2019

Phase 3 – Evaluation of technology at client facility: Q2 2019

Phase 4 – Trial deployment of technology: Q3 2019

Phase 5 – Full scale deployment: 2020


All financials to be negotiated with client in accordance with proposed technology and maturity.

RFP was closed on
Oct 2018

RFP Title


Automated Powder Mixing Equipment
RFP Description

NineSigma, on behalf of a multi-billion dollar North American production company, invites proposals for automated technology for the mixing, processing & portioning of powder/liquid slurry.


NineSigma’s client processes an average of 165 pounds of slurry daily at each of hundreds of distributed manufacturing facilities around the world in a time-consuming, labor intensive manual process. To improve speed & efficiency and reduce batch-to-batch variation, the client seeks to introduce automation to the process.

Currently, the process operator will add pre-determined amounts of powder and water to a mixing vessel. The mixture is then processed. After processing by machine, the thick slurry is then further processed manually by the operator. The slurry is rolled to the desired thickness and portioned using a manual cutter in preparation for curing.

The process is subject to variation between batches and operators, resulting in unacceptable dissimilarities in the finished product.

To reduce said variation, the client wishes to improve consistency using automation.

Anticipated Project Phases or Project Plan

Phase 1 – Assessment

  • Review of responses: Q3/Q4 2018

Phase 2 – Demonstration

  • Demonstration of proposed technology at respondent’s facility: Q4 2018/Q1 2019 

Phase 3 – Evaluation

  • Evaluation at client facility: Q2 2019
  • Client will compare existing approach to proposed solution at client R&D site

Phase 4 – Trial

  • Limited deployment to client facilities to field study: Q3 2019

Phase 5 – Deployment

  • Full-scale deployment of technology to all client facilities in North America: 2020

 Criteria for Moving from Phase 1 to Phase 2

Client will consider for advancement an approach that meets performance criteria with acceptable economics and pathway to commercialization.

Client is open to all approaches that can meet the established timeline to commercial deployment.

Client is open to partials solutions as well as complete systems.

Key Success Criteria

Must Have Performance:

  • Consistently dispense water or powder at prescribed amounts
    • Automatically OR
    • On command
  • Mix slurry for pre-set duration
    • A variety of manipulation options highly sought
  • Maximum dimensions:
    • 27 inches wide by 30 inches deep and 84 inches high
  • Maximum loading height: 48 inches above floor
  • Minimum off-loading height: 38 inches above the floor
  • Precise portion control:
    • hexagonal shape inscribed within a 3.7" diameter circle ± 0.10" (Preferred) OR
    • 3.375” round ± 0.10"
    • 0.5" height ± 0.05"
  • All surfaces in contact with slurry must be safe for human exposure

Would Be Nice Performance:

  • Automatic offloading of portioned product onto curing trays
  • Incorporation of scrap materials into next batch
  • Ability to:
    • Double stack portioned product OR
    • Cut portioned product at half height
  • Customizable output quantity (1-20 units)
Possible Approaches

Possible approaches might include, but are not limited to:

  • Mixing systems adapted from other industries:
    • Construction/Building Materials
    • Cosmetics
    • Food
    • Paint/Inks
    • Pharma
  • Novel extrusion systems
  • Novel sensors
Approaches not of Interest

The following approaches are not of interest:

  • Technology not suitable for human exposure
  • Technology that cannot meet portion tolerances
  • Systems that cannot meet desired footprint, now or in the near future
Items to be Submitted
  • Non-confidential description of proposed technology and working principle
  • Availability of technical data including
    • Physical dimensions
    • Process control
    • Precision
    • Previous usage
    • Output options
  • Technical maturity of the approach (concept, reduced to practice, prototype, ready to commercialize, ready to implement, commercialized)
  • Pathway to commercial scale including timing, estimated budget, and capacity for manufacture
  • Estimated unit cost of technology
  • Position on intellectual property including patent references
  • Desired relationship with sponsor
  • Team description and related experience

Appropriate responses to this Request

Responses from companies (small to large), consultants, entrepreneurs, or inventors are welcome.  For example:


You represent a company that has demonstrated a proof of concept.

You represent a company that has reduced method to practice at lab scale.

You represent a company that has developed a method for use at pilot scale.

You represent a company that has demonstrated a method ready for implementation at industrial scale.

Preferred Collaboration Types
Area of Interest