Roll Compactor

Roll Compactor Machine: The Ultimate FAQ Guide

In this guide, you will find all information about roll compactor machines.

Whether you want to learn about the components, working principle, advantages, machine specification or quality specifications, you’ll find everything here.

Let’s get started:

What is a Roll Compactor Machine?

Roll compactor machines are devices that you will use in fulfilling the process of dry granulation of different formulations.

Roll compactor machines will enhance your pharmaceutical production capacity through a continuous and simplified granulation process.

Roll compactor machine

 Roll compactor machine

How do you use Roll Compactor in the Pharmaceutical Industry?

In the pharmaceutical industry, you will use the roll compactor to granulate different substances such as tablets.

Here are the main applications where you will need to use the roll compactor.

 Granulated powder

 Granulated powder

1. Compression of Different Drug Formulations and Drugs

You will use the roll compactor machine to drugs that have an inconsistent and low tap and bulk densities.

Apart from that, you will use the machine in the granulation of drugs that have very fine and inconsistent particle sizes.

What’re more roll compactor machines are also suitable for particles that exhibit poor compatibility as well as poor flow properties.

2. Preparation of Compressible Excipients

You can use the roll compactor machine to granulate materials that have good compatibility and flowability.

It will assist in the agglomeration of the particles in a bid to produce excipients that are directly compressible.

3. Granulation of Herbal Excipients

You can use the roll compactor machine in the granulation of herbal extracts which usually possess hydrophilic components like sugars.

It will assist in granulating herbal excipients that have poor compression and flow properties before the tableting process begins.

4. Controlled Release Formulations

You will also use the roll compactor machine in the granulation of controlled release formulations.

5. Enhanced Dissolution and Immediate Release Formulations

The Roll compactor machine will also come in handy in the granulation of immediate-release formulations.

Apart from that, it will come in handy and assist in the granulation of enhanced dissolutions.

How Does a Fixed Gap Roll Compacter and a Floating Gap Roll Compactor Compare?

 Roller compaction process

 Roller compaction process

There are two different types of roll compactor machines which include the floating gap and the fixed gap roll compactors.

Fixed gap and floating gap roll compactors have similar components which include:

  • Feeding System
  • Compaction Unit
  • Size reduction Unit

You will, however, note that there is a difference between the realization of the smallest distance or gap.

In the floating gap roll compactors, the distance or gap will change in accordance to the quantity of powder provided.

The force you will apply to the powders in this machine will remain constant thus reducing property fluctuations to the minimum.

On the other hand, just as the name suggests, fixed gap roll compactors do not change with change in powder quantity.

In this case, the amount of powder that the fixed roll compactor draws will change and is often inconsistent.

This will result in the application of different forces on to the powder bed of the fixed gap roll compactor.

As a result, this will lead to large fluctuations in the granulate and ribbon properties.

What are the Benefits of Using the Roll Compactor Machine?

You will benefit in great way by applying the roll compactor machine in your production line.

Here are the main advantages that you will experience form using the roll compactor machine:

·  Suitable for Heat and Moisture Sensitive Drugs

Roll compactor machines are suitable for dry granulation in comparison to the wet granulation process.

It does not require the use of organic solvents and water thus suitable for dry compaction of moisture and heat-sensitive drugs.

· Suitable for Low Melting Point Compounds

You will use the roll compactor machine in the process of granulating compounds that have very low melting points.

Apart from that, it will also come in handy in the granulation of compounds or formulations that degrade rapidly under heat.

This is because the roll compactor machines do not involve any step of drying compounds using heat.

· Results in the Formation of Porous Tablets

You can use the roll compactor machine to make tablets that have high porosity allowing easy penetration of water.

This leads to the formation of tablets that have very high disintegration behavior.

· Low Cost of Operation

You will save on the cost of operation by using the roll compactor machine in granulation of different formulations.

· Environmentally Friendly Machine

The use of the roll compactor reduces pollution of the environment as it does not produce toxic waste.

· Easy to Operate

Operating the roll compactor machine is a very simple process since most of the operations are automatic.

With a human-machine interface, you can easily control the granulation process of the roll compactor from the control panel.

· Product Variation

Yu can use the roll compactor machine in the production of different sizes of products that exhibit different properties.

For instance, you can use the roll compactor machine in the production of bulk density products and grain size capsules.

·  Easy Cleaning Process

It comes complete with a very unique roll exchange system that will facilitate easy and faster cleaning procedures.

It helps in the elimination of dirt and other contaminants that might be unsafe and compromise the whole process.

This will guarantee you proper production of products that are suitable for human consumption.

Which are the main Process Variables in the Roll Compactor Machine?

When using the roll compactor, you have to maintain particular process variables to produce the right level of compaction or granulation.

Here are the main process variables that you have to pay close attention to:

 Pharmaceutical roll compactor machine

Pharmaceutical roll compactor machine

· Compaction Pressure

This is the compaction force applied per centimeter of the roll width in the roll compactor machine.

· Speed of Feeding Screws

You have to have control on the speed that the feeding screws operate on for proper results.

· Roll Speed

In this case, you will also have to have proper control on the speed of the rolls for practical results.

Which are the Limitations of Using the Roll Compactor Machine?

Well, just like any other machine in the market, you will experience a few hitches during the operation process.

Here are some of the limitations that you might experience when using the roll compactor machine.

· Loss of Rework ability

Preparations of tablets using the roll compactor often have inferior tablet strength in comparison to wet granulation tablets or direct compaction.

In this case, there is the use of minimum force of compaction with a very small particle size of the starting powders.

· Production of Non-Compacted Powder

Since there is no use of liquid binders, you will experience a very high amount of fine powder remains.

In comparison to the wet granulation process, the final yield of roll compaction process is also very low.

· High Energy Consumption Levels

Roll compactor machines consume a low of power in the granulation process of different formulation.

You will have to pay high electricity bills when using the roll compactor machines.

Considering the high level of output, you will note that the cost of electricity is an insignificant value to worry about.

· Static Charge Accumulation

When using the roll compactor machine, you are likely to experience a build-up of static charges on the machine.

This is as a result of not using enough fluid in the production process that could act as a lubricant.

Accumulation of the static charges cab ne dangerous as that might lead to flames through formation of sparks.

How Does the Roll Compactor Machine and Dry Granulator Machine Compare?

There is no difference between a roll compactor machine and a dry granulator machine.

You can also refer to a roll compactor machine as a dry granulator machine since they perform similar functions.

The dry granulator machine and the roll compactor machine have compact sizes that support continuous processes.

Apart from that, both sets of machines are space and energy-efficient.

Which Materials Can You Process Using the Roll Compactor Machine?

Roll compactor machines are generally suitable for dry granulation which is good for heat and moisture sensitive materials.

Apart from that, it is the most suitable machine you can use in materials having poor flowability and compaction behavior.

Additionally, you can use it in granulation of hygroscopic materials such as the dry herbal extracts.

Which Features of the Roll Compactor Machine Affects the Efficiency of the Machine?

You have to optimize several factors on the roll compactor machine to enhance the production or granulation process.

Here are the main features that you need to place under consideration for optimization of the machine.

  • Rate of Feeding the Materials
  • Roll Pressure of the Roll Compactor Machine
  • Speed of the Roll System
  • Physical as well as Chemical Properties of the Materials.

Optimization of the above features will optimize the production process hence determining end quality products.

What are the Main Parts of the Roll Compactor Machine?

The successful functioning of the roll compactor machine depends on the main parts of the machine.

Here are the main parts of the roll compactor machine that enhances its productivity.

· Feed Hopper

This is the point where you will feed the roll compactor machine with the materials or formulations needed.

The feeding hopper will lead the materials towards the direction of the rotating chopper of the feeding hopper.

· Screw Feeder

The roll compactor machine depends on the screw feeders to assist in the transfer of materials to the machine rollers.

You can also depend on the screw feeder to de-aerate the materials that you need to compact.

There are three different types of screw feeders that you can use in a roll compactor machine including:

i. Inclined Screw Feeder

ii. Vertical Screw Feeder

iii. Horizontal Screw Feeder

· Rollers

You can use the roller to compact the materials in the gap or space in every roller compactor machine.

The main types of rollers that you can use in a roller compactor machine include:

· Flat Rollers

You will use the flat rollers for powders which tend to adhere to the surfaces of the rollers.

· Pocketed Rollers

You will use this type of roller on the materials which have the ability of cleanly discharging from the rollers.

· Punch Shaped Rollers

You can use this type of roller for exceedingly lightweight, and voluminous fluidizing materials.

· Pre and Fine Granulator

This part of the machine takes up the flake dropping pieces from the hopper and uses it to form finer granulates.

Your choice of the right size of mesh will determine and maintain the granule sizes.

· Flake Crusher

You will depend on this part of the machine in the coarse pressing of compacted flakes.

It comes complete with six blades that assist in breaking and cutting flakes ejected from rollers into smaller particles.

You should consider optimizing the speed of the flake crusher in a bid to influence the granules to fine ratios.

Which Quality Specifications Must Roll Compactor Machines Adhere to?

When purchasing the roll compactor machine, there are several quality factors that your machine must adhere to.

Some of the quality standards that the roll compactor machine must adhere to include:

 Pharmaceutical roll compactor machine

Pharmaceutical roll compactor machine

· Current Good Manufacturing Practices (cGMP)

You must ensure that the roll compactor machine adheres to the current good manufacturing practices.

It will ensure that the machine does not produce toxic gasses that will contaminate or pollute the air.

·  Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Compliance

It is important that you ensure that the drugs you produce using the roll compactor machine has no contamination.

To achieve this, you will have to ensure that your roll compactor machine adheres to the FDA quality standards.

· CE Compliance

You must ensure that your machine and all the electrical components of the roll compactor adhere to the CE compliance.

You should confirm that your roll compactor has the CE compliance mark before you make a purchase.

Ensuring that your roller compactor has all the above features is the perfect way of ensuring your safety as well.

What is the Working Principle of the Roll Compactor Dry Granulation Machine?

Roller compactor machines usually apply the counter-rotating rollers to agglomerate dry powders for in a bid to granulate the powders.

Here is an explanation on how the roll compactors work.

1) Weighing of Raw Materials

First, you need to have all the ingredients necessary form the granulation process ready.

In that case, you have to avail all the materials in the perfect ratios and quantities for production of consistent products.

You can achieve this through proper weighing and measuring of the ingredients you need for the process.

2) Feeding the Machine with the Materials

This is the point where the production process begins and it begins with feeding the ingredients to the machine.

Through the feeding hopper of the machine, you will add correct measurements of the different ingredients.

You may use the roll compactor machine that has a drill which you can use in feeding the roll compactor machine.

3) Flow of the Ingredients

With the materials in the machine, a gravitational pull will direct the ingredients to the screw feeder of the machine.

The rotation of the screw feeder will enable the movement of the materials towards the compaction station.

As the materials flow through the screw feeder, pre-compression occurs leading to the deaeration of the ingredients.

Screw feeders have gaps in between them that help in the transmission of the ingredients from one point to another.

You can also use the different types of screw feeder to feed different types of materials to the compression station.

4) Roller Compaction

Once at the compaction station, the materials will pre compressed or compacted using two different rollers.

These rollers are in constant rotation in opposite directions thus enhancing proper compaction of the particles.

The compaction and compression of the materials leads to the formation of sheets, flakes and ribbons.

During this process, there are two factors that usually affect the outcome of the ingredients.

The first factors that you need to consider is the speed of the rollers which dictate the end product quality.

You should set the speed to a particular level where the machine will facilitate maximum powder compaction.

The compaction process will determine the final quality of the flakes or ribbons.

Apart from speed, the direction of rotation of the rollers will also have a direct influence on the quality.

In that case, you have to ensure that the compaction rollers rotate in similar direction to flow of ingredients.

Additionally, you can have the rollers rotate counterclockwise to one another thus ensuring maximum compaction.

Pharmaceutical rolle compactor machine

Pharmaceutical roller compactor machine

5) Flake Milling

You will have ribbons or flakes as the final result of the roll compaction process.

Finally, you have to mill the ribbons or flakes to form different sizes and shapes of granules.

At this stage, the machine will employ the services of the flake crusher to aid in the milling process.

It will crush the flake into smaller granules which are usually of unequal sizes.

To avoid that, the bigger granules often remain within the milling sections for further milling to the right size.

Apart from that, the machine has a recycling unit which will sieve the granules and allow only the right size particles.

It will then recycle the other large sizes particles or granulates until they achieve the right granule sizes.

Besides, it will also collect the powders back to the compaction stage and recycle them to form the right-sized granules.

The machine will finally discharge the granulates for further processing.

How does Wet Granulation and Dry Granulation by Roll Compaction compare?

You can either choose to use dry granulation or wet granulation of different formulations.

Wet granulation goes through the following steps:

  • Blending of the ingredients
  • Preparation of the Granulate Solutions
  • Granulation of Different Formulations
  • Drying of the Granulates

On the other hand, dry granulation using the roll compactor machine involves the following steps:

  • Blending of the Ingredients
  • Roll Compaction of the Formulation
  • Milling of the Products

In both cases, you will save on time and also use energy efficiently in the granulation process.

The main difference between the two types of granulation processes is the absence of granulate solutions.

Dry granulation using the roll compacter does not use granulate solutions in the process.

How Does Roll Compaction Method and Slugging Method in Dry Granulation Compare?

Roll compaction method and slugging method are two distinct methods that you can use in granulation of different formulations.

Slugging compaction method involves particle compression into flat and large pellets or tablets.

You can either use a tablet press or large heavy-duty rotary press machine such as the roll compactor machine.

In this case, you will use a lubricant which you will add to the solution thus leading to the formation of granules.

On the other hand, roll compaction involves the use of the roll compactor machine to compact the formulation.

In this case, you will not use any form of lubricant in the compaction process.

Apart from that, you will realize that roll compaction is a simpler process in comparison to the slugging process.

Additionally, roll compaction is more efficient and has higher production outputs in comparison to slugging.

How can you Troubleshoot a Roll Compactor Machine?

There are common problems that you will experience by using the roll compactor machine.

You can identify such problems through troubleshooting procedures of the machine.

Here are the main problems that you might experience coupled with their solutions.

 Roll compactor machine

 Roll compactor machine

· Less Compaction Time

This can be as a result of a slower speed of the compaction rollers which will affect the compaction of the formulations.

You can sort this by adjusting the speed of the rollers to ensure adequate compression of the formulations.

· Leakage of the Powder Formulations

Leaking powders from the roll compactor machine often influences overall output and efficiency of the roll compactor.

This can be as a result of lose seals as well as warn out seals on the roll compactor machine.

You can sort this out by replacing the seals that are worn out as well as the seals that are lose to prevent leakage.

· Air Accumulation

You might experience situations where air gets confined within the system of the roll compactor.

You can sort this out through the application of the de-aeration system thus getting rid of the air from the system.

· Hard Ribbons

This can be as a result of excessive flow of materials or ingredients into the roll compaction system.

The only way to sort this out is by controlling the amount of powder flowing into the roll compactor system.

What are the New Technologies for the Dry Granulation of the Roll Compactor Machine?

There are numerous technological advancements in the field of pharmaceutical roll compaction of different formulations.

Here are some of the new technological advancements that you should look at.

Pharma roll compactor

· Hydraulic and Pneumatic Systems

The incorporation of pneumatic and hydraulic systems within the roll compactor units will boost the efficiency of the machine.

For instance, using hydraulic systems in modulation of the feeder hopper assembly will increase ease of disassembling and cleaning.

The pneumatic vibration screens will assist in the moderation of the powder processing through vibration of the powder screen.

· Advancements in Safety Measures

Most of the new roll compactor machines have alarm systems that will warn you of impending danger.

Apart from that, others have slipping clutches mounted between the feed screw and the gear box.

Additionally, you might have interlocking electrical components as well as enclosures on all the moving parts.

· Accurate Driving Mechanisms

Most of the modern roll compactors come complete with AC variable frequency drive systems the guarantee consistency and precision.

This increases the ease of properly controlling the whole roller compactor machine processes.

It will ensure consistency as well as accuracy in the entire roll compaction and granulation process.

· Fully Automatic Systems

Using a fully automatic roll compactor machine will increase the efficiency as well as accuracy of the whole process.

The main parts of the automated system include HMI system, PLC software as well as automatic feeding systems.

· Negative Air Pressure Pumps

This system helps in the pre-cleaning of the whole system chamber of the roll compactor machine.

It keeps the whole system clean and free of any powder residue thus making the entire process hygienic.

How do you Maintain Roll Compactor Machine?

Cleaning and maintaining the roll compactor through the addition of new features extend the life of the machine.

It is, therefore, important that you know the time for repairs as well as the time for replacement of parts.

Here are the main instances that you should look out for during the maintenance process of the machine.

Uneven Roll Gap on the Roll Compactor Machine

You can maintain this kind of problem on your machine through the following procedures

i. Replacing or adjusting the top of all the side seals

ii. Checking the hydraulic accumulators and cylinders

iii. Checking the leveling in the horizontal feed hoppers ensuring proper feeding to the screws.

iv. Balancing hydraulic pressure systems between the front and rear cylinders.

v. Confirmation of lack of binding at the floating roll assembly.

Cannot Attain Set Limit of Roll Gaps

In such a situation the maintenance procedure will require the following:

i. Replacement or adjustments of the side and top seals

ii. Filling of the horizontal feed hoppers

iii. Adjusting speeds of the horizontal feed screws

iv. Enabling proper control of the roll gaps

v. Normalizing and reducing the roll pressure

vi. Adjusting the roll gap control set limits

Excessive Fines in End Products

You may experience excessive fines in the end products of the roll compactor machines.

You should be able to maintain this problem through:

i. Confirmation of wearing out of the mill blades

ii. Checking the mill screen for signs of plugging or damages.

iii. Reducing the rolling speed and increasing the dwelling time

iv. Confirming excessive wear on the top as well as side seals

Excessive Coarse in the End Products

This can be as a result of quite a number of factors that require proper maintenance.

Some of the issues that you need to sort out include:

i. Establishing damages on the mill screen or worn out parts on the mill screen

ii. Confirming the presence of damages on the top screen of the screener.

Extreme Granulation Temperature

This problem can be coupled with a series of other problems such as overloading and compaction of roll motors.

You can maintain such problems through:

i. Inspection and repair of the hydraulic systems

ii. Checking the roll surface and ensuring that it is proper for powder compaction.

Are there Pharmaceutical Equipment that Serves Purpose as Roll Compactor?

Absolutely, there is equipment that you can use as substitutes of the roll compactor such as blenders and mixers.

You can use the blenders and mixers in high capacity operations which involve mixing of high amounts of single materials.

All the processes such as weighing, blending, milling, and discharging happen continuously and concurrently.

What are the main Safety Features of the Roll Compactor Machine?

Roll compactor machines have safety measures in place that will guarantee safe granulation procedures.

Some of the safety measures in place include:

  • Efficient automatic systems that regulate all the processes within the roll compactor systems.

Some of these processes have interlocking systems that ensure proper reliable and regular operations.

  • Compact designs that will prohibit any form of material cross-contamination between all the materials.
  • It comes complete with a motor that is flameproof.
  • In case of an overload, the system has an overload relay and an emergency stopping system just in case.
  • Apart from that, most machines have safety switches for the slip and chamber clutch drive.
  • Water jacket designs for roller compactors that handle heat-sensitive formulations.

Is there a difference between Granulation and Briquetting?

Roll compaction and briquetting work under the principle where some materials will self-adhere under different forms of intense pressure.

While some of the principles are the same such as pressure, there are other factors that vary considerably.

Roll compactors will employ two counter-rotation roll processes in the compaction process.

This system involves feeding different formulations through the rollers for compaction to form ribbons and sheets.

After that, you will pass the ribbon through flake breakers and granulators before discharging the final product.

On the other hand, briquetting will also employ the same counter-rotating rollers but every roll pocket half.

As the rolls of the briquettes close together, the pocket will half the fuse thus compressing it into proper shapes.

Clearly, there are many factors you should consider when choosing roll compactor machines.

The best part, this guide has explained every critical aspect.

At SaintyCo, we are a leading supplier of efficient and high-quality roll compactor machines.

We support all our clients during machine qualification tests, installation, commissioning, and subsequent maintenance processes.

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