Tablet coating is an important process in tablet manufacturing process. A tablet coating machine incorporates an organic or aqueous layer all around the tablets or pills.
In today’s guide, you will learn the working theory, benefits, technology and features of tablet coating machines.
Therefore, read this guide before investing in your next machine.
Advantages of Tablet Coating Machine
Below are some of the advantages of using this type of machine, they include;
- Control of the medications’ taste, odor, and color is improved by this technique. This makes it simple for patients to take their medications and boosts market drug sales.
- This medication pills now have a better-looking exterior. For instance, medications and tablets made of plant extracts are unpleasant; therefore, coating is necessary to give them a more appealing appearance.
- The device helps to protect the medicine from gastric fluids, making it resistant to stomach acid.
- Tablets can be coated to keep them safe from the elements, minimizing losses and extending shelf life.
- This machine allows for the incorporation of various material constituents, preventing incompatibilities brought on by chemical interactions.
Factors to Consider when Buying Tablet Coating Pan
During the purchase of a tablet coating pan, the following aspects should be put into consideration;
The Air Capacity
This issue needs to be carefully considered while buying the tablet coating pan.
This is because the amount of solvent that can be removed depends on how much air is passing through the bed.
Tablet coating pans are available in a range of sizes, so the user must choose the right one.
Whatever size one chooses, it should be able to meet their needs during the production stage.
Adherence to GMP Guidelines
Before making any purchases, a thorough market analysis should be performed to ascertain whether the machine complies with standards.
When equipment adheres to the right standards, it is fit for operation, which is what you need to use.
Speed is a crucial component in production. The equipment should work by coating tablets more quickly in order to increase production rates.
Nonetheless, various production phases call for various rates of speed. As a result, you must buy a machine whose operating speed can be controlled.
The machine that is chosen should be simple to service and maintain.
Also, it should be simple to purchase its components and accessories in case of service or damage.
You need to obtain a new machine with the latest technological advancements in the market.
The equipment will serve efficiently since it incorporates new technological advancements hence greater production rates.
Having a steady production rate in to a steady market results to high sales thus more profitability to the institution.
A proper research should be conducted on the machine’s usability. A simple machine that is easy to operate should be bought since it increases your own efficiency during tablet coating.
Types of Coating Pans for Tablets
According to the design structures and operating principles, we classify the various kinds of tablet coating pans.
The various kinds of tablet coating pans include the following:
Perforated Tablet Coating Pan
This is a device for coating tablets with tiny air holes partially or completely covering the drum. It works by having a tablet coater rotate across a horizontal axis while coating the tablets.
Standard Coating Pan
The typical tablet coating pan is a circular piece of metal with a diameter that ranges from 15 to 200 cm. the metal involved in this set up is usually a round steel pan.
Additionally, top of the workbench is tilted at a 45-degree angle by the circular pan.
The metal pan is pushed in a circular motion to its horizontal axis by an electric motor, which powers the device.
Fluidized Bed Coater
A spray nozzle, a vertical cylinder, and a column make up the design structure that allows dry air to flow upward.
In this procedure, the coating fluid is pushed into the fluidized bed by the spray nozzle and mixed with the coating particles.
Parts of Tablet Coating Pans for Tablets
For the tablet coating pan machine to operate and deliver quality tablet coating performance, it should have the following components;
This is an essential part of the machine since it handles the mixing of the pills and the delivery of conditioned air to the tablets. Electric motors can be placed in a variety of locations depending on the machine’s design, such as;
- The chamber for exhausting air
- Constriction pump
- Drum for coating
Automated Control System
Using this technique, the operation of the machine is always safe and effective. The automated control system fully regulates and monitors;
- Transforming the data display
- The system prints and logs the work state.
- It keeps track of and manages the machine’s operational status.
- This system regulates and keeps track of variables like speed of operation, temperatures, and pressure.
These systems are needed by the machine to enable;
- Avoiding any potential breaks
- It enables tablets to tumble smoothly.
- It permits a successful collision with the spray nozzle that is transporting the coating solution.
The human machine interface allows for an operation that will result into great coated tablets.
This simple system comprises of pump, tank and the spray nozzles therefore making it reliable process for;
- Spray guns getting plugged
- Achieving extensive spray coverage of surfaces
- Cleaning and maintaining the spray guns
- Stability of automation
The pump also stabilizes the automation hence making enhancing the ease of the system working thus efficiency.
Understanding Working Principle of Tablet Coating Pan
The following is the basic working principle of this machine;
- Coating ingredients which are in solution form are applied on a group of tablets lying in a bed.
- These tablets in a bed can either move vertically or horizontally.
- To facilitate the solvent evaporation, a simultaneous stream of heated air has to be flown through the pan.
Also, it is important to note that the sequence of tablet coating process will vary depending on the machine design.
Design Considerations for Tablet Coating Pan Machine
You need to consider the following design considerations under effectiveness in a tablet coating pan machine;
- The device needs an immersion tube setup. This technique guarantees effective drying and eliminates air pockets throughout the drying process.
- Since they consistently disseminate dry air on the coated tablet surface, a diffuser and a baffled pan should be taken into consideration.
- The device needs a pressure regulator to make sure the tablets are adequately coated.
- Moreover, the equipment should be able to coat tablets of conventional sizes. This prevents faults in the coating application processes.
- To ensure accurate tablet rotation for absolute coating, the operation of the orbital moving drum should also be verified.
- In order for the electric motor to rotate the coating pan, it must also be in good working order. The tablets are therefore continuously sent through it.
- To control the atomization of the coating solution, the machine should also include a suitable peristaltic pump. Also, it covers already-crumbled tablets with thin coatings.
- A suitable exhaust system that permits air leaving from the coating pan should be in place.
- Moreover, make sure the machine has an automated temperature management mechanism for proper temperature control.
Improving Efficiency in Tablet Coating Process
Below are reliable ways in which efficiency can be improved during the coating process of tablets;
The tablet bed surface area must be expanded for a quick coating process to be achieved. Also, to increase the spraying surface area and make the process more efficient, the number of spray nozzles should be increased.
The tablets must all be exposed to the same amount of coating solution from the spray guns for the coater to achieve an even coat over the course of the process.
As a result, the pills should be exposed to the spray guns at roughly the same frequency.
An optimum high spray should be utilized to dry the tablets properly and uniformly so they can function more effectively. Large amounts of purified air should be used in the spray.
Types of Coating for Tablets
There are different types of tablet coating processes which include the following;
In this processes, the tablet is dipped into coating liquids which are then tried afterwards. The process coats tablets but lacks consistency and speed.
Tablets with this sort of coating often have a sweet coating made primarily of sucrose and polysaccharides.
These coatings make tablets taste sweeter, eliminating the bitter flavor and making it simpler for patients to chew.
Also, they impart a pleasant scent to the fish supplement-like tablets that have a bad smell.
The process entails tablets being coated by single or multiple layers of gelatin.
Tablets that have been coated by gelatin are always easy when swallowing, well labeled and foul smell is masked.
This is a type of coating process that mainly is used in the pill taste improvement and aesthetic purposes.
For instance, the process is used in the beautification of tablets coming from herbal extracts which are bad looking.
The pill is covered with a coating that is resistant to stomach acid in this form of coating, enabling it to reach the intended destination.
As there is no acid in the small intestines, the tablet survives the stomach’s acid and is then absorbed.
Using specialized machinery and a drying process, granules are compacted around a prefabricated tablet in this procedure.
Using conduct charges while coating tablets is essential for an electrostatic coating.
Ionic substrates are simultaneously sprayed onto the tablet and an electrostatic charge is applied.
The tablet develops a uniform coating due to the electrostatic charge and the sprayed ionic particles.
How Fluidized Bed Coating compare to Coating Pan
|Fluidized Bed Coating||Tablet Coating Pan|
|This is a coating process that is done on grounded substances.||It is a tool that aids in the coating of tablets using a solvent.|
|This process can coat a wide variety of granules, crystals and powders.||With this equipment, you can coat tablets|
|The initial cost of obtaining a Fluidized Bed Coater plus its maintenance requires low investment cost||Acquiring of this equipment is expensive thus requires more initial capital and maintenance hence making it to be more costly.|
Tablet Coating Pan Problems and Solutions
|Challenges in Tablet Pan Coating Process||Causes and Solutions|
|Chipping||· Tablets may be exposed to a lot of fillers and pigments|
· Adding polymers may eliminate chipping
|Tablets cracking||· Occurs when table cores expand after coating|
· A seal coat may solve the problem
· Alternative solution is extending the time frame between sugar coating tablets and compactions process
|Marbled appearance||· Uninform distribution of color and surface smoothness|
· Always have a smooth surface to prevent marbling
|Uneven coloring||· Excessive drying may cause color disproportion and erosion|
· Coating solution is low quality
· Faster drying may cause color migration
· Uneven sub-coating
It is evident that this equipment is a masterpiece in the coating of tablets in the pharmaceutical company. Therefore, this guide has been able to illustrate different aspects of the tablet coating pan machine.
It has illustrated its benefits, working principle, types, how to improve its efficiency among other important aspects.
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