Many students, freshers & qualified persons who have never visited any pharmaceutical industry are not aware of the equipment which are practically used in pharmaceutical industries for tablet manufacturing starting from granulation to packaging.
In this article, we will discuss the most commonly used equipment with their brief description for easy understanding for all who want to know about the list of equipment used in tablet manufacturing.
We will divide equipment according to their area of usage like the following,
Equipment Used For Granulation
As we know there are two types of granulation, The first one is wet granulation & 2nd is dry granulation, so first of all, we will discuss the list of equipment for wet granulation.
Wet Granulation Equipment
The most commonly used equipment for wet Granulation is given below,
- Granulating Equipment
- Drying Equipment
- Screening Equipment
- Blending Equipment
Sifters are used for sifting or sieving & commonly used sifter in wet granulation is a Russell sifter or vibro sifter.
Russell sifter has a reservoir tank, vacuum suction delivery system, sieving chamber & vibratory system.
For Kneading, wetting, or wet granulation various types of mixers or granulators are used. The most commonly used are as given below
RMG is a rapid-mixing granulator that is generally used for the Kneading & pre-mixing process. It has impeller & chopper blades for mixing & cutting.
Spiral Mixer is a low-shear mixer also known as a sigma mixer where sigma shape blades are used for mixing & wetting products.
Some other mixers like the diosana mixer, plough mixer, and dough mixer are also used for pre-mixing & kneading.
As we know dryers are used to remove excessive moisture during wet granulation & The following 2 types of dryers are commonly used.
- Tray Dryer
Tray dryers are like big ovens where the product is placed in various trays & are dried by hot circulating air.
FBD is a fluid bed dryer where the product is dried by the fluidization process.
Screening or sieving equipment is used to reduce the particle size of granules after drying & to get uniform size granules.
The following are the most commonly used equipment for this process
- Oscillating Granulator
- Co Mill
It has a rotating arm known as a rotor & sieve is attached at the lower part of the sieving chamber. Product is added from top & reduced size product is collected from the lower side.
It is high-speed milling equipment used to screen the dried grains.
For final mixing or blending following mixing or blending equipment is used,
- Double Cone mixer
- Bin Blender
- Twin Shell blender
Dry Granulation Equipment
In dry granulation, for sifting & mixing the same equipment is used as in the case of wet granulation. We know that in dry granulation the pressure is applied over powders to form granules & there is no wetting & drying stage in dry granulation so no wetting & drying equipment is used.
For pressure application, the following may be used.
- Compression Machine for Slugging
- Roller Compactor
Direct Compression Equipment
In direct compression, no complex steps are involved so the following equipment is used,
- Vibro Sifter
- Bin blender or Double Cone Blender
Name Of Equipment For Compression
When granules are prepared or powders are mixed the next step is to compress them to form tablets.
The following equipment is used during the tablet compression process.
- Compression Machine
- Metal Detector
Compression machines are used to compress granules or powder to form tablets using punches & dies which are installed on a rotating table.
When tablets are compressed & ejected they also have a fine powder along them & to remove it a deduster is used.
All the tablets after compression are passed through the mental detector to remove any metal-contaminated tablets.
Name Of Equipment For Tablet Coating
Tablet coating is the process in which we deposit a layer of polymer over the moving bed of tablets.
The following equipment is used during the tablet coating process
- Tablet Coater
- Peristaltic pump
- Mixing Tank
Tablet Coater Perforated Coating pans are used for tablet coating where spray guns are installed in the pan to deliver the automized coating suspension over tablets.
The peristaltic pump supplies the coating suspension to the coating guns.
A mixing tank is used to prepare the tablet coating suspension.
Equipment Used For Tablet Blistering
After tablet coating the next process is to blister the tablets for which blister machines are used.
Blister machines are used to pack tablets in alu alu or ALU PVC foils. Many advanced types of blister machines are used where pockets are formed & after tablet filling these pockets are sealed, embossed with Batch number & cut into individual blisters.
The packaging is the process where blisters, bottles, sachets, etc. are packed into individual unit cartons also known as secondary Packaging.
Process of Packaging in pharma industries is a manual activity but some well-established pharma companies use cartonating machines as well.
The cartoning machine is used to automatically insert a blister into the unit pack & all the activities like opening of unit pack, insertion of a blister, leaflet, etc., the closing of unit pack, and stamping are done by the cartoning machine.