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AZO USA to Illustrate Conveying Challenges at Interphex 2019

Gus Carrington

Gus Carrington About The Author

Apr 2, 2019

AZO, Inc. will exhibit at Booth 2820 at the 2019 International Pharmaceutical Expo (Interphex) April 2-4 at the Javits Center in New York City.

Interphex is a three-day conference dedicated to pharmaceutical and biotechnology innovation, technology and knowledge from development through commercialization. The show brings together more than 600 suppliers with more than 10,000 international industry professionals to network, learn and explore various exhibits.

AZO will bring a capsule conveying system, as well as a micro COMPONENTER© to illustrate the challenges of conveying capsules, tablets, and fragile and sensitive ingredients.

The AZO COMPONENTER© mobile container has proven particularly effective in managing highly active ingredients and products such as colorings and additives when they are automated. The AZO-patented docking collar allows for dust-free and contamination-free dispensing.

Below the ingredient dosing stations, a mobile, recipe-controlled floor scale is used to prepare the batch. At the top of this scale is an AZO BATCHTAINER® in which frequency controlled coarse and fine flow dosing occurs. The floor scale moves automatically to the predetermined dosage points. It is also possible to bring in minor quantities with the highest accuracy through the AZODOS® negative weighing system.

While at Interphex, the AZO micro COMPONENTER© will model one aspect of a COMPONENTER© subsystem. The AZO COMPONENTER© allows AZO to provide complete dispensing for bulk, minor and micro ingredients.  

AZO Inc. VITAL system sales engineers Bill Nesti and Mike Miller explain that in a pharmaceutical operation, the COMPONENTER© makes it possible to dispense for oral solid dosage (OSD) manufacturing of all the necessary ingredients. These ingredients would include all those from the bulk excipients like calcium carbonate to the micro ingredients such as various active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs). This weighing can be done on a single or multiple mobile scale prior to mixing.

“The micro COMPONENTER© allows us to demonstrate the micro-ingredient weighing portion,” Nesti said. “We highlight both the precision of the load cell and the accuracy over time of the scale system, relative to the complete weighing process.”

The challenges of conveying fragile materials as well as tablets and capsules are closely related, Nesti and Miller said.

Capsule conveying systems often face challenges such as avoiding cross-contamination, remaining dust-free to protect operators and products, and abiding by hygiene requirements. The AZO BATCHTAINER® or DOSITAINER® meets these challenges by offering various solutions.

As tablets undergo several process steps (the last of which is coating), it is important to first distinguish between coated and uncoated tablets, Nesti and Miller said. An uncoated tablet is hard and dense but prone to chipping.

“A chipped tablet will not pass quality control and therefore we must take this into consideration,” Miller said. “Coated tablets, on the other hand, are quite durable and much easier to convey.”

Similarly, empty capsules are also very fragile and must be handled gently in conveying.

“To achieve this, we want to slow down the conveying process so that at the exit of the conveying system, the product will fall out of the conveying stream with very little energy,” Miller said.

Capsules are lightweight, have a relatively large surface area and will convey in a “hybrid low-velocity system,” Nesti and Miller explained. While tablets have a much higher bulk density, the conveying method is essentially the same (a hybrid low-velocity system).

AZO team members will join more than 7,400 decision-makers aiming to source solutions in the pharmaceutical, biological, business consulting, packaging, distribution, and medical device industries at Interphex 2019.  Join us at Booth 2820.