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05.03.2018 Continuous production process for development of pharma recipes

Coperion, Stuttgart, Germany, reports that thanks to its tailor-made turnkey technological solutions based around the ZSK twin screw extruder, it is able to respond to the growing demand from the pharmaceutical industry for systems for continuous production processes that offer higher efficiency and uniformity than batch processes. One example of this is a complete pharmaceutical system with a ZSK 18 MEGAlab twin screw extruder with an 18mm screw diameter that was recently delivered to an international pharmaceutical company. This fully integrated system includes two Coperion K-Tron gravimetric loss-in-weight feeders with superior accuracy in API and liquid feeding, a cooling belt, and a Coperion Pelletising Technology strand pelletizer. With a maximum throughput rate of 10kg/h, it is suitable for both wet extrusion and continuous hot-melt extrusion (HME) on a laboratory scale.
One reason for the continually increasing importance of HME processing in the pharmaceutical industry is its intensive mixing effect, as offered by Coperion’s co-rotating ZSK twin screw extruders. As a result, active substances and excipients can be dispersed very finely and homogeneously in pharmaceutical polymers without the use of solvents. Combined with the customised peripheral equipment, these systems make it possible to precisely adhere to the recipe and to create a reproducibly high product quality. In addition, process steps, such as encapsulation or taste masking, can be integrated into the process.
The integration of Coperion K-Tron feeders for complete systems ensures optimal dispensing of the formulation ingredients. The feeders, which are available as volumetric or gravimetric models, demonstrate a high level of reliability, especially in continuous processes. For complex recipes, several feeders can be grouped around an extruder inlet. 
ZSK 18 MEGAlab twin screw extruder in pharmaceutical design with Coperion K-Tron gravimetric loss-in-weight feeder, cooling belt and Coperion Pelletising Technology strand pelletizer

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