Coating, Containment and Continuous production
How Glatt is Exceeding the Benchmark
Converting in a Continuous Mode is Possible
An additional advantage that Glatt offers is the option to convert the present fluidised bed plants of the type GPCG into continuous. These models are already used in several pharma companies, reports Thies. Hence the developers invented a process insert that exactly fits these machines and that enabled to integrate the fluidised bed plants in a continuous production line.
The rotary chamber for fluidised bed plants regulates the retention time of the product in the plant and saves the user the investment in a new plant. The overall process of the continuous line begins with the micro-dosing devices for powders or microgranulates, followed by the granulate production in a twin screw granulator and the drying process in a Glatt fluidised bed plant with the new rotary chamber.
The final tableting process starts after additional processes. The entire process sequence is continuously monitored with PAT systems and automatically readjusted over corresponding control loops, if required.
At Glatt, even the tablet coating is thought new. After all, Glatt has over 40 years of experience in the development of coating machines — a talent that engineers can employ in order to benefit. Thies qualifies “We have made the coating process quicker and more efficient” as the development goal. One is thereby faced with the choice whether to undertake a general overhaul of old product lines or to develop an entirely new machine.
Ready for Active Coating
Glatt finally decided to go for the new development. “We can generate numerous advantages for clients in this manner”, says the Development Manager. The new machine must be containment-capable and CIP suitable. “To design such features additionally in an existing coater rarely provides satisfactory results.”
The developers still made further changes: in order to optimise the airflow and to achieve a particular uniform and especially a reproducible coating outcome, a diffuser was newly designed that replaces the usual incoming air shoe with the drum.
A new nozzle arm, developed Düsen Schlick exclusively with Glatt, reduces the number of tubes and enables the placement of the spray nozzles in three directions with two axes. A laser controlled adjustment of arm angle and space ensures that the spraying arm is found at an optimum distance to the tablet bed at every point in the process.
Thus even the great art of coating, namely the active coating, is not a big deal anymore, says Thies. Additional flexibility creates the possibility to vary the filling volumes between ten and 100 percent without the drum exchange.
With the Lab Containment technology, Glatt manages another important trend in pharma production: Containment. The operational safety requirements are on the rise and the increasing number of highly active substances requires flexible solutions for lab applications.
These solutions grow according to the requirements of the user. Based on Weiss Pharmatechnik’s Wibo Barrier system, the partners have thus developed a containment solution, which allows three configurations as per the toxicity: an open containment with clean air curtain, an open containment with clean air curtain and sliding panel and a closed total containment with clean air curtain and closed front panel.
“We are in a position to create a workplace as required”, explains Thies. There are devices for weighing, blending, granulating, sieving and drying on a laboratory scale so that Glatt can put together a complete granulation line in a mini format.