Our Story


Sonic Corporation’s early days are defined by a commitment to a Homogenizer device known as the Sonolator. The Sonolator is a modernized version of an ultrasonic liquid whistle, originally referred to as the Pohlman Whistle, which could generate ultrasonic energy by directing a liquid stream at high velocity over a blade-like reed set in the liquid path. Pressure oscillations and cavitation were formed, creating violent disruptions within the liquid which broke down particle sizes.

In the 1950’s British inventor Eric Cottell took this Pohlman concept and patented a device he would refer to as an “apparatus for the mechanical production of acoustic vibrations for use in emulsification, dispersion or like processes.”

Fluid enters from the left and funnels down to a narrow slit, then projects out at high velocity into the knife-like blade (item 11). This device was actually attached to the end of a hose and placed within a process fluid tank and recirculated by means of a pump.

A newer version of the Cottell device was developed and Sonic spent its early days selling simple single-feed systems that utilized the Sonolator. The device was attached to a PD pump with motor and basic instrumentation.

At the time, these single-feed systems were used for dispersing fumed silica into resin or processing silicone emulsions. Dow Corning and DuPont standardized on the Sonolator in the 70’s for processing many of their emulsions in the silicone and textile businesses.


Below is a modern day version of the Sonolator with an illustration of the fluid stream that accelerates from the Orifice and cavitates as its flows over the blade.

Over the years, Sonic technicians developed several versions of the device to accommodate many flow rates and pressures. High flow versions can achieve 100-150 GPM at pressures to 500 PSI, 1,000 PSI and 5,000 PSI.

The Model XS-1500 Sonolator

Custom High Pressure Homogenizer Skid

Completely customized skid

Sonic designs the Sonolator into complete homogenizing systems with PD pumps, pressure transmitters, flow meters, other instrumentation and automation and controls cabinets. We have honed our skills to fabricate such systems with expert craftsmanship and quality. This required a long history in the business of skid and process system fabrication and construction, starting with the very rudimentary unit shown earlier. Sonic has been building systems to operate at various pressures while meeting the Personal Care and Pharmaceutical industries’ needs for hygiene and clean-ability. Our systems are robust enough to handle the rigorous demands of environments in the Chemical industry as well.

Indeed, we have matured in our capabilities and expertise when you compare to the earlier single feed Sonolator units. We now develop customized multiple-feed homogenizing and emulsifying systems that meter water, bulk liquids, aqueous phases, and oil phases to create emulsions instantly and continuously. Systems with 2 to 6 streams have been used to process everything from shampoo and conditioner, lotions and creams to silicone and wax emulsions.

Along the way, the Sonic team decided to modernize the grinding mill by developing our RotoMill Colloid Mill. This meant applying a keen eye for modern and sleek design to provide a device that would beautifully weave together form and function. Mills are used for a wide range of products including greases, clays, bitumens as well as food sauces and emulsions.

Personal Care Homogenizer

As we’ve grown, we have added Blending System, Metering and Pumping System design and fabrication to our resume. When it comes to custom process skid manufacturing, you want a trusted partner who can deliver on design, form and function. Our history has prepared us to be that for you.

This is our story. It’s the story of an equipment company that dedicated itself to hard work and perseverance, a company that had and continues to have a belief in it’s products and the value those products can add to your company. We hope you will come to believe in us as well.

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