A leak testing machine that can help Japanese based pharmaceutical manufacturers save money by using clean, dry, non-destructive testing technology will be on show for the first time at InterphexTokyo (Pharma Pack 2009). Developed by the Northern Ireland company, Sepha Ltd, the machine is called Blisterscan and blisters which “pass” the test can be re-introduced to the blister packing line, increasing line yield and reducing unnecessary waste costs.

Japanese pharmaceutical manufacturers will have the opportunity to see two innovative, money saving machines in action for the first time in Japan at Interphex Tokyo 1-3 July. BlisterScan is a non-destructive leak tester and Press-Out Manual Wide is a deblistering machine. Both are already used by major pharmaceutical manufacturers throughout the world so Sepha is looking forward to demonstrating their value in action for the first time to Japanese visitors at Interphex.

Regional sales manager Claire McGrath explained how pharmaceutical manufacturers benefit from these machines: “Our range of leak testing and deblistering solutions improve quality assurance, increase production throughput and, above all, save money. BlisterScan and Press-Out Manual Wide will be in action at Interphex where our team will be able to demonstrate how to save money with Sepha’s BlisterScan, our non-destructive leak tester for blister packs that provides the perfect alternative to the methylene blue dye test.”

BlisterScan can detect and locate leaks as small as seven microns across a full cross-section of the entire blister web. Blister packs are scanned by a beam of light both before and after a vacuum is applied. The difference between these scan readings is used to calculate the size of the hole in the blister pack. It identifies the precise pocket which leaks – ideal for testing alongside blister lines to speed up diagnosis of any problems and preventing the production of excess rejects. It is a non-destructive, clean, dry process so any packs that pass the test can be returned to the production line. Packs that fail the test can have the contents removed for repackaging using one of Sepha’s deblistering machines. The alternative Methylene blue dye test by comparison renders any tested blister packs un-saleable.

Operators have no influence over the results of the BlisterScan test as the Pass or Fail status of each pocket is shown on the screen, and can be printed out or saved. BlisterScan can be fully validated, unlike the Blue Dye test where the operator has to make a subjective decision whether a pack passes or fails.

Sepha will also be exhibiting one of its ranges of de-blistering machines. Press-Out Manual Wide is a small, portable, manual deblistering machine that is suitable for in-line and diagonal push-through blister packs. It does not have any tooling to change over and only takes about three minutes to set up for a new blister pack. It can de-blister up to 20 packs per minute and is operated manually by a handle.

Sepha will also use a high resolution DVD to show other machines in its range, such as the Press-Out Universal, which is the state-of-the-art automatic deblistering machine that is used by pharmaceutical manufacturers to recover large volumes of tablets and capsules from blister packs. It is particularly suitable for fragile or expensive pills because of its gentle action. It is suitable for all formats of push-through blister packs and also child resistant and peelable blister packs and can deblister up to 50 blister packs per minute.

Visit us at: Sepha Ltd, Booth 2121, Interphex Japan, Tokyo Big Sight