If you use an automatic tamping-style capsule filling machine, you’re going to love CapsCanada’s new Tamping Simulator tool! This patent-pending benchtop device, which is only available to CapsCanada customers, enables you to predetermine all of the settings for the dosing area of your filling machine.
With the Tamping Simulator, before you go to production your filling machine operator will know:
⦁ Which dosing disc to use – The dosing disc on the Tamping Simulator is equipped with sizes 000, 00, 0, 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5, with the ability to test elongated sizes as well. It is also adjustable to represent disc thicknesses ranging from 0mm to 26mm, in .1mm increments. All of the format sizes are built into one versatile disc; only the tamping pins are changed out to complete a capsule size change.
⦁ Where to set the powder level in the bowl – The ability to test the effects of varying powder levels in the bowl is made simple by the simulator. Graduated marks in inches and millimeters are easily communicated to production for filling machine set-up.
⦁ The optimal settings for each tamping station – One of the greatest features of the Tamping Simulator is that it uses the same components – i.e., the same Tamping Pin, Compression Spring and Cap, as well as the same 0-25mm compression scale – as your filling machine. The depth of travel of the pin going into the bowl and disc are also exactly to scale for the industry-leading machines. This all combines to create completely transferable information from product development equipment to production equipment.
⦁ The spring compression settings for each station – The Tamping Simulator features an additional scale that shows exactly how much Tamping Spring compression you are using, with indicators showing maximum pressure limits.
Identify formulation challenges prior to production
Image 1: Linear View of Tamping Process
Most pharmaceutical or nutraceutical R&D departments do not have the ability to test a powder’s compression on equipment that “speaks the same language” as the filling machine. So the formulation will make it all the way to production, and then the filling machine operator will discover a problem that can’t be overcome by simply adjusting the machine.
Sometimes a powder that seems fine will become very sticky under compression, causing the product to stick to the pins. Sometimes the opposite will happen – when you try to compress the powder, it will move out of the way of the pin, resulting in poor slug formation.
With the CapsCanada Tamping Simulator, these challenges can be identified and addressed during development, long before production begins. You can also determine the compaction characteristic of incoming raw materials, easily test every blend, and more.
Get ideal slugs right from the start
It can take a machine operator a great deal of time and wasted material to identify settings to achieve target weight. For example, they might start with the wrong dosing disc, and then spend over an hour tearing the machine apart to try a different disc. Or, even worse, they’ll achieve the target weight and move into production, despite having poor slug formation, which will result in weight variation and joining defects.
The CapsCanada Tamping Simulator lets you have an experienced technician determine the settings prior to machine setup, and then simply hand those settings to the less-experienced machine operator, thereby slashing average setup times and increasing yield.
Want to learn more?
Contact Steve Lee, CapsCanada’s Technical Manager, at email@example.com.