Many products shaped as tablets / capsules are fragile to transport, the pharmaceutical industry is no exception.
By controlled low speed conveying of the product, a guided and gentle entry of the product and elimination of all sharp edges in the conveying pipeline are enabling automated conveying of fragile delicate pharmaceutical tablets and capsules. In the pharmaceutical industry, tablets are moved in several sub-processes. Typical examples are:
- Conveying tablets to a counter
- Conveying tablets from a coater
- Conveying tablets into a packaging machine
The innovative piGENTLE® technology is designed to enable a low and constant speed of the tablet transfer, regardless of the number of tablets in the pipeline. It is also independent of the size, shape, or weight of tablets or capsules.
The piGENTLE® is an additional unit on the piPREMIUM pump and regulates the feed pressure of the pump. A low start pressure enables tablets to be picked up at low speed. As tablets fill the pipeline, the vacuum level will increase, which in turn will trigger piGENTLE® to increase the feed pressure. The feed pressure is regulated approximately between 2 and 6 bar. Due to the functionality of piGENTLE, piFLOW®t is only offered with pump technology based on coax technology, and electro-mechanical pumps are not offered.
piFLOW®t can be either a standalone unit as any conveyor, or as a pre-separator unit, where simple cleaning, lowest possible building height, or dust needs to be separated from the conveyed tablets/capsules.
piFLOW®t with a pre-separator, besides having the advantages of accomodating for low building height and easy to clean, it works excellent as a de-duster unit as well, catching a large portion of the dust, created by transporting tablets/capsules.
piFLOW®t follows the modular design and depending on configuration- capacity up to 3 million tablets / h is possible.
In the entire piFLOWt®t conveying system there are no sharp edges against which tablets can be cracked. This is an important design feature that ensures tablets are handled as carefully as possible.
The tablet conveyor is fully configurable in all its parts, which allows it to be adapted to suit any application, individual products, and process. It can be used either as a stand-alone conveyor or as a pre-separator with remote vacuum generator.
To handle the tablets and capsules as careful as possible at the feed point, a feed pipe has been developed as an accessory. Benefits with a specific conveyor designed to transport fragile tablets, capsules and other fragile products are that it offers improved performance and cost-effective transfer between processing units such as tablet presses, coating drums and blister packaging lines, with a decreased amount of waste due to chipped/damaged products. The perfect way to automate a traditionally manually handled operation.
- Material in contact with the conveyed product is in compliance with FDA, EC No. 1935/2004 and EC No. 10/2011.
- ATEX Dust and Gas certified.
- Steel quality ASTM 316L (stainless steel, acid-resistant), mechanically polished.
- Designed according to USDA guidelines.
- Antistatic filter and seals are available.
- Automatic filter cleaning.
- Hygenic design making maintenance and cleaning simple.
- Deduster function with pre-separator solution.
As good as it sounds, there are still products to avoid. Tablets with the characteristics:
- Soft pressed tablets. These are typically tablets that dissolve in water or in the mouth. They have a breaking force of 20-50 Newton and are consequently very fragile.
- Irregulars shapes (see picture below). Irregular shapes break more easily, and can also get entangled in the pipeline.