IBC Systems for the Pharmaceutical Industry
Matcon specialises in providing intermediate bulk containers (IBC) and associated equipment for the handling of powders, granules, tablets and other materials. Matcon has offices around the world and has been helping its customers to achieve increased productivity and improved product quality, batch traceability and process efficiency for over 30 years.
IBC systems for pharmaceutical solid dosage
The pharmaceutical solid dosage manufacturing process involves mixing active pharmaceutical ingredient (API) with excipients to create solid dosage forms such as powder, granules, tablets, capsules and pellets.
Matcon IBC solutions are widely used in the solid dosage industry, where we are able to provide solutions for blending powders within IBCs, handling blended powders without segregation and tablet handling in bulk without damage. As a result we have many successful installations in major blue-chip pharmaceutical companies and in many generic manufacturing companies.
IBC systems for API manufacturing
The pharmaceutical API manufacturing process commonly involves the reaction of powder with solvents, followed by various drying processes.
Matcon’s IBC systems have the unique ability to be able to handle the solvent-rich, ‘wet cake’ solids between the centrifuge and drying processes, as well as the powders before reaction and after drying. This enables the contents of any reactor to be transferred to any dryer using IBCs.
It is the ability to discharge the full range of API bulk solids from IBCs in a controlled and contained manner that has made Matcon the choice for many major blue-chip pharmaceutical API companies.
Below is a selection of IBCs and associated equipment that are suitable for both pharmaceutical solid dosage and API manufacturing. Other systems and equipment are available; please contact Matcon for more information.
IBCs for pharmaceutical powders and granules
The S Series IBC is ideal for the storage and distribution of pharmaceutical powders, granules and other materials. Matcon supplies a range of fill heads, which attach to the IBC inlet and provide a dust-tight connection during filling. As an option the IBC may be tumbled in a Matcon IBC blender to provide an efficient means of homogenising the IBC contents.
The Matcon Smart Drum is a small-capacity IBC which is ideal for handling small batches of pharmaceutical powders, granules and other materials. Unlike conventional drums, the Smart Drum does not need to be inverted to discharge it. It is manufactured in stainless steel and can be easily cleaned.
IBC batch blenders
Matcon’s IBC batch blender is used in the pharmaceutical industry to tumble-blend powders in Matcon IBCs. Features include:
- Quick and efficient mixing inside the detachable IBC
- Suitable for blending IBCs from 500l to 2,500l
- No cleaning – no cross-contamination
- Maximum utilisation of mixer
Bulk tablet handling equipment
Matcon produces bulk tablet handling equipment for the pharmaceutical industry, including tablet discharge stations and tablet IBCs.
Matcon’s tablet discharge station provides automatic and controlled feed of tablets and capsules from an IBC without damage. It can be controlled in a variety of ways; for example, using flood feeding, timers or level sensors.
Matcon’s tablet IBC has been specially designed to provide efficient bulk handling of tablets and capsules without damage. The unit incorporates a gentle let-down spiral, which decelerates tablets and minimises drop heights during filling. Used in combination with Matcon’s tablet discharge station, the tablet IBC can be discharged in a controlled and dust-tight manner.
IBC wash stations and booths
Matcon can provide IBC wash stations and booths that can wash all types and sizes of IBC – cone valves, butterfly valves and many more.
IBC filling systems
Matcon’s IBC filling system is designed to enable dust-tight filling of IBCs. The system prevents any dust escape during filling. It is manufactured in 316L stainless steel and its seals and covers are made with FDA-accepted materials. Options include:
- Low-profile design (top-mounted cyclinders)
- IBC filled sensor