Tablet Presses

Tablet Presses

SaintyCo-Tablet Presses Series includes small R&D single and bi-layer tablet presses, as well as medium and large size, single rotary and double-sided rotary tablet presses.(Rotary Tablet Press, Rotary tablet press machine, Tablet compression machine, Tablet press machine, Tablet Presses, Tablet Pressing machine)

Tablet Press Machine: The Complete FAQ Guide

1. What is a Tablet Press Machine?

It is a mechanical device used to transform powder material into tablets of uniform shapes and sizes.

The machine can also be referred to as a tablet compression machine, pill press machine, tablet punching machine, or tablet making machine.

Tablet press

 Tablet press

This machine features highly innovative features that could be mechanical or electro-mechanical.

Also, it is usually big in size thus may need a lot of storage and operation space.

Regardless of its type, a tablet punching machine contains two punches and one die.

These could in a single station or multiple station depending on the type of the machine.

It can also be electronic motor driven as well as hand operated too.

2. What is Tablet Press Used for?

A tablet press is generally used in the manufacturing of distribution-quantities of tablets.

The machine is used to create varied shapes of tablets from granulated material.

It used to manufacture tablets for numerous industries like pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, confectionery, herbal etc.

3. How many types of Pharmaceutical Tablet Presses are there?

The popular types of tablet compression equipment  are:

Different designs of tablet press machines

 Different designs of tableting machines

  • Single punch press machine which contains one set of punch and dies. It is available as a bench top press unit and is also semi-portable.

The advantage of this is that it can be hand operated or mechanically driven to create a variety of tablets.

This type of tablet press, note, also comes with several features that are also adjustable such as compression force and turret speed.

  • Multi-stationrotary press. This one is used to press various kinds and shapes of tablets. It is also the most common type in the market.

The rotary press machine tends to be heavier than the single punch press type.

It also packs advanced features that are both electrical and mechanical.

Like the single punch press, rotary press machines are available in a range of types too.

They can also be customized to suit specific application requirements.

  • The advantage of the rotary press type of machine is that its parts are replaceable on account of any damage. Unfortunately, they are only power-driven thus cannot be hand-operated.

4. How does the Rotary Table Press Work?

Tablet formation in a rotary tablet press machine occurs in three stages, namely;

  • Filling; the filling process on tablet formation involves the transfer of raw materials into position for tablet compression.

The materials, in this case, are processed prior to filling to make them suitable for tablet formation.

Here, raw material in the form of powder and other ingredients undergoes granulation, sizing, among other processes necessary for the particular project.

The granulation is then blended thoroughly to create a homogenous mix that is fed into the tablet press machine where it flows directly into the punch-die cavity for compression.

  • Compression; once the die cavity is full, one is required to meter the process by removing excess granulation from the machine. This is to allow compression of only the right volume of granulation.

After overfilled granulation is removed, the material is then compressed by the pressure of (upper and lower) punches within dying to form tablets.

  • Ejection; tablet press machine removes compressed tablets from lower punch of the die system.

For this to happen, the upper punch retracts from the die-cavity and rises above the turret table.

The lower punch then rises in the die which in turn pushes the tablet upward to the top surface of the die table and out of the die cavity.

Once in the die-cavity, a tablet scrape off pushes the tablet off the die table and away from the tablet press machine.

That’s it!

Note that the tablet formation process is continuous.

So the machine will keep going until you’re able to meet your target output for the day.

5. What are the Main Components of Tablet Compression Machine?

The parts of a tablet press machine will vary depending on the type of the machine and model.

But the most critical parts that you should expect to find in your unit are;

Parts of tablet press machine

 Parts of tablet press machine

Parts of tablet press machine

Pars of tablet press machine

  • Hopper; the tablet press hopper is a large bin that holds granulation material before it is fed into the machine for compression.

Usually, the material can be fed into a hopper manually or using other mechanical means.

  • Die cavity; it is here that granulation is compressed into tablets. It is also the die cavity that determines the diameter, shape and size of tablet formed. In this case, you can find die cavities in various forms such as oval-shaped die sets, round dies, etc.
  • Feed paddle; this a mechanical component that forces granulation into the die cavities
  • Punches; a tablet press machine contains upper and lower punches that move within the die bore to compress the material into tablets.
  • Cam tracks; this is the part that guides movement of both upper and lower punches during filling and compression stages.
  • Ejection cam; it guides the lower punch upwards to allow the ejection of tablets from die cavity after compression
  • Take off blade/scraper; this component is fitted in front of the tablet press feeder housing. Its function is to deflect the tablet down the discharge chute during ejection.
  • Discharge chute; this is where formed tablets pass through for collection

6. Which Parts Wear Faster in Tablet Compression Machine?

Mostly, the moving parts of any machine wear faster than any other parts.

In tablet compression machine, it is the dies and punches that succumb to effects of wear quicker than the others.

The dies wear faster due to the upward/downward motion during compression.

Punches also wear off faster as they are exposed to very abrasive environments and extremely high pressure.

Scraper blades wear quickly due to constant die rotation and product abrasion during ejection.

7. What is tooling in Tablet Compression Machine?

Tooling is the basic mechanical unit in a tablet compression machine.

It comprises of punches, die and it’s set up as used in a tablet press machine.

These tools are key elements of a tablet compression machine.

They are what determine the design and functionality of a tablet press machine.

The dies and punches are also critical determinants of the size, shape, and nature of tablets formed on the machine.

A standard tablet press machine has two punches; lower and upper punches.

The lower punches seal the dies from the bottom of the machine.

Its role is to ensure that proper amounts of granulation fill on the dies.

 Tablet press tooling system

 Tablet press tooling system

Lower punches also play a fundamental role in the tablet ejection process.

On the other hand, upper punches work to ensure that the right amount of pressure is exerted on the granule material for compression.

This helps to ensure the formation of the on-specification tablet sizes and shapes.

Please note that tablet press machine tooling is often made of metallic material.

This is because most of it are moving parts that are subjected to very abrasive environments and pressure.

Hence, they are highly susceptible to wear and tear.

And because of this, it is critical that tooling is designed with high precision and accuracy.

It is should also be made using the highest quality materials for superior performance and durability.

8. How does B Tooling compare to D Tooling in Tablet Press Machine?

Tooling in tablet press equipment come as B or D tooling.

Tablet press tooling

 Tablet press tooling

Of course this follows the:

  • TSM (Tablet Specification Manual) or,
  • EU (Euro Standard)

As per the international tooling standards, tablet press equipment:

  • B tooling system is further classified as BB tooling
  • Also, you can use D tooling system on B tooling and in that case, you can refer to it as DB tooling system.

Each of tooling type is designed and made based on the specific tooling requirements of the product.

Note that there is not much difference between B and D tablet tooling. B tooling is the same BB tooling.

Their difference lies in the lower punch length which is just 3 and 9/16 inches.

Comparing D and b tooling, the former tend to have a thicker diameter of their body compared to B tooling.

The tips of the punches of D tooling also have greater outer diameter than those of B tooling punches.

See table below for better understanding:

Tooling classification

 Tooling classification

The broader tips of D type tooling punches are often found suitable for compression of big size tablets.

When choosing tooling for your product, it advised that you choose D type tooling when looking to compress big size tablets.

This is due to the broader tips of D type tooling punches.

For overall productivity, B type tooling is known to give 20%-25% more productivity than D tooling.

9. What is a Tablet Coating Process?

Tablet is a finishing step in manufacturing tablets with controlled delayed release profiles.

Tablet coating, in this case, is applied to mask taste, make the tablet easy to swallow and protect the active ingredients inside.

The coating makes the tablet smoother, more appealing and generally easier to ingest.

You can coat tablets in a rotating pan where you’ll spray or directly pour coating on them and then have the tablets dried using heated air.

Note that the amount of coating applied on tablets must be controlled to avoid interference with the effectiveness of the dosage.

10. Are Compaction and Compression in Tablet manufacturing the same?

No.

Both compaction and compression are the duet constitutive parts of tablet manufacturing but they are not the same.

Compression is the reduction of powder volume due to applied pressure.

Reduction in volume is usually a result of the deracination of the gaseous phase in the tablet manufacturing process.

During compression, powder particles increase in proximity which forms bonds that provide coherence to the powder.

Compaction, on the other hand, is the formation of a solid specimen of refined geometry by powder compression.

The mechanical force of compaction tends to alter powder into coherence specimen.

11. How do you Troubleshoot Tablet Press Machine?

A myriad of factors contributes to the successful running of a tablet press machine.

Some of the troublesome problems that you can encounter with a tablet presser include sticking punches, inconsistent tablet weight, and hardness, worn scrapper edge etc.

These can often be corrected by making adjustments to the tablet press or its systems.

Here are some potential problems that you may encounter with a tablet presser and how to troubleshoot them.

i. Excess Material in the Frame Spilling over the Scraper into the Die

To solve, lower pin grid feeder plate or reduce the speed of paddle wheel feeder.

Also, check if the feed frame is bent and re-level it.

Lowering the feed chute can also help material to flow more slowly.

ii. Insufficient Material being Fed to the Dies

If you’re experiencing this problem, try raising the feed chute to allow material to flow more freely.

If this doesn’t work, check and remove any large granules or broken tablets from the feed frame as these can impede material flow.

Something else that you can do is to raise the pin grid feeder gate or increase the speed of the paddlewheel feeder.

iii. Lower Punches Sticking

You can prevent tablet press lower punches from sticking by cleaning all punches and sockets more frequently.

As you do this, always check for material buildup around the punch tips and clean them off.

iv. Variations in Punch Lengths

Troubleshoot variations in punch lengths by keeping punches in complete sets with similar overall lengths.

Also, try reworking sets of punches together.

v. Worn-out Scraper Edge

The solution to this is to redress or replace the scraper.

vi. Flow Issues

You will need to adjust the tablet formulation to rectify this.

If you cannot adjust the formulation, then you may have to modify the machine hopper.

Optimize the hopper wall angle to allow proper material flow.

Another way to correct flow issues is to insert a vibratory rod into the hopper transition.

This will help to agitate the formulation thus encourage proper flow.

vii. Improper Tablet Hardness

Proper rotation speed of the feeder and turret are crucial to achieving proper tablet hardness.

If you’re having problems with this, you’ll need to correct feeder RPM.

Check that all parts are in good condition and that none are worn out or damaged.

Another option to improve tablet hardness is to slow the tablet compressor down.

This will increase dwell time which can help you achieve proper tablet hardness.

Please note that while all these can help you solve some of the most commonly occurring tablet press issues, nothing beats proper maintenance.

Regular maintenance, cleaning and lubrication of the tablet compressing machine is crucial for successful tableting operations.

In addition to maintenance, inspect your unit as often as possible to ensure that everything is good shape and working as it should.

And, if you find that all troubleshooting solutions don’t seem to work, find a certified technician to diagnose and fix the machine for you.

12. Why is cGMP Critical for Tablet Press Machine?

cGMP (current good manufacturing practice) is a must-meet standard for a tablet press machine.

The standard assures that the machine is safe and hygienic to use for tablet manufacturing.

It shows that the machine is made using certified materials that will not encourage product contamination.

A cGMP certified tablet press machine will also ensure that tablets production is consistent and controlled according to the requisite quality standards.

Generally, cGMP tablet pressers are designed to help minimize tablet manufacturing risks that you cannot eliminate by testing the final product.

13. How do you Specify Tablet Press Machine?

Tablet press machine

 Tablet press machine

To be able to verify the quality, reliability, and capability of a tablet press machine, there are certain elements that you need to specify.

These elements are known as technical specifications and you can ascertain them through the following;

  • The Model/Series of Tablet Compression Machine; the model/series of your unit will greatly determine its production capability, type of tablets that it can produce, compression process among other things.

So it is important to know why you should buy model A instead of model B of the same brand of tablet press machine.

  • Evaluate the Tablet Press Turret Specifications; the turret is a key component in tablet press machines. It houses key tablet press machine tooling i.e. dies and punches.

Critical elements to evaluate in the turret are the tooling systems, turret design, and the drive mechanism.

You also need to consider the material used to make the turret.

This has to be high-grade material that can withstand extreme operating conditions and that is corrosion resistance.

  • Automation and Control System of Tablet Press; to be sure that a tablet press machine is suited for your unique application requirements, you need to check the technology that it incorporates.

Check the automation software used and the automation hardware as these are what will guarantee you an optimal tableting process.

Most tablet press manufacturers incorporate Siemens PLC software in the units.

Touchscreen human interface is also pretty common automation hardware for tablet press machines.

It makes operating the machine and adjusting parameters easy and quick.

  • Robust & Compact Design of Tableting Machine; you cannot talk about the performance, reliability and quality of a tableting machine without looking at the overall structure of the machine.

A good unit should be cGMP compliant.

This indicates that it is safe to use for tablet production.

The unit should also have excellent dust handling capability as you will be working with powdered ingredients.

For safety and reliability, consider a tablet presser that has few parts in direct contact with the product.

  • Safety of both Technicians & Machine; if the machine is cGMP complaint, then you are good to go. Also, a safe machine should have all its moving parts isolated and interlocked. It should also have a double mechanical locking system for machine and operator safety.

Don’t forget to check if the machine has an alarm system that can warn you in case of danger or faulty operation.

14. Which Support Equipment do you need alongside Tablet Compression Machine?

To support the operations of your tablet compression machine, you’ll need this equipment;

  • Fluid bed granulation machine; this is for processing tablet formulation
  • High shear mixer machine; it makes the mixing of tablet formulation ingredients easy, neat and quick
  • Bin blender for blending tablet formulation which includes drug substance, excipients, and other ingredients
  • Conical mill; this is for sizing granulation before tableting
  • Fluid bed dryer; this is drying machinery that you use to dry screened wet granules for a set period
  • Tablet coater for coating formed tablets
  • Deduster; also known as definger, a dedusting devicehelps to rid-off excess dust from the tablet machine.
  • Metal detector; the role of a metal detector is to detect metal fragments within formed tablets
  • Weight checker; this device weights individual tablets and rejects tablets that are not within the specified weight range. It is powder driven.

15. Is Pill Press same as Tablet Press Machine?

Yes.

A pill press or tablet press compresses powder material to convert it into pills or tablets of precise size, shape and weight.

Pill press

 Pill press

16. How does Manual Tablet Press compare to Fully Automatic Tablet Press?

Manual and fully automatic tablet press machines both have their respective pros and cons.

Therefore, deciding which one to purchase for your application depends on the specific requirements of that application.

There are three main advantages of using a manual tablet presser.

These include lower cost of acquisition, ease of use and low cost maintenance.

Manual tablet press

 Manual tablet press

However, these type of machines are limited to low volume production such as in clinical trials and sample productions.

Nonetheless, they are quick to set up and also highly robust to cope with everyday day use.

Compared to manual machines, fully automatic table press models offer a varied choice of feed speeds.

This means that you can easily select and set optimal speeds for the specific tableting batches.

Fully automatic tablet press

 Fully automatic tablet press

Optimal speed options helps to improve production as it eliminates delays during tableting runs.

With a fully automatic model, you need very minimal manual input.

The main advantage here is that a fully automatic operation frees up the operator to unload the machine and prepare for subsequent runs.

This can boost turnover rates significantly.

Please note that unlike manual option, fully automatic tablet pressing machines are suitable for large volume and complex tableting applications.

The challenge however lies in finding a fully automatic tablet compression machine that has all the right features for your application.

You need to find to find an automatic unit that packs the latest features that are simple and also easy to use.

A complex machine with confusing controls and poor engineering is likely to be a burden rather than an advantage.

In short, both manual and fully automatic machines offer different advantages.

Choosing between as earlier said is all dependent on the application in which you intend to use the unit.

17. What is Tablet Press Turret? Tablet Press Turret is divided into how Many Parts?

A tablet press turret is the heart of the tablet press machine.

It is the holes of the turret that hold the dies of the tablet press machine.

Tablet press turret

 Tablet press turret

Therefore, it is critical that the turret is designed in a way that ensures proper alignment of the die pockets and punch guides.

This is what determines the performance of the tablet press tooling and whether you’ll be able to run successful tableting operations.

Usually, a tablet press turret can be divided into these three key sections;

  • Upper turret; a section that holds upper punches
  • Lower turret; the part that holds lower punches
  • Die turret; a section that holds the dies

18. Which Industries use Tablet Press Equipment?

A tablet presser is used to manufacture tablets of varied shapes and sizes for numerous industries such as;

  • Pharmaceutical
  • Nutraceutical
  • Cosmetics
  • Ayurvedic
  • Herbs
  • Fitness
  • Confectionary
  • Cleaning products industry
  • Industrial pellets manufacturing
  • Mining

19. How does Single Punch Tablet Press Machine Work?

Single punch tablet press machine is the simple technique of manufacturing tablets.

The machine is also known as an eccentric press or a single station press.

This is because it uses a single set of station tooling which comprises a die and a single pair of upper and lower punches.

This machine works by way of compaction.

During manufacturing, a compaction force on the fill formulation is entered by the upper punch while the lower punch remains static.

The process takes the form of a hammering motion, thus it is often referred to as a stamping process as it is similar to how a stamping machine works.

20. How does Single Punch Tablet Press compare to Multiple Station Tablet Press?

Two things differentiate single punch tablet press from the multiple station tablet press.

First is the fact that they use single-sided compression to make tablets.

Multiple station tablet pressers use double-sided compression.

And second, is that single punch press models don’t have a dwell time on their compression cycles.

Multi-station options tend to use a punch heat flat that enables dwell time as the punch passes under the compression roller.

Single punch tablet press

Single punch tablet press

Multi station tablet press

 Multi station tablet press

21. What are the Advantages of Rotary Tablet Press?

Multi-station tablet press which is also known as a rotary tablet press packs a myriad of advantages.

These include;

  • Guarantees a higher output as high production levels can be achieved with a minimal amount of labor.
  • Higher outputs of between 9000-234000 tablets per hour save time and enable you to meet your large production demands.
  • Powder filling can be made easy by using an automatic feeding mechanism
  • It reduces wastage of material
  • It allows independent control of both the weight and hardness of tablets

22. What are the Advantages of Single Punch Table Compression Machine?

The single punch press machine is generally compact in size.

It can fit in smaller spaces and can also be moved easily.

Also, it is usually easier to operate and it runs at a high utilization ration.

This type of tablet pressing machine can manufacture tablets of all forms including odd shapes like oblong, as long as it is within a 20mm diameter.

It also uses a high amount of pressure to reduce weight variations between tablets while operating at very low noise levels.

23. What are the Main Parts of Tablet Press Punch and Die System?

The punch and die system is made up of the following parts;

  • Lower punch
  • Upper punch
  • Die
  • cam tracks
  • Compression rollers
  • Feeding system

Parts of tablet press tooling system

Parts of tablet press tooling system

24. What Design Specifications Affect Efficiency of Tablet Press Tooling System?

Basically, tablet press tooling has a huge influence on the performance, efficiency, and reliability of a tablet press machine.

It is the tooling design that determines the success of your tableting runs.

The design of the tooling will determine the following key characteristics of the tablets:

  • Shape
  • Size
  • Hardness
  • Weight
  • Thickness, etc.

As such, you should always choose your tooling carefully and in accordance with your application requirements and product specifications.

Keep these tooling specifications in mind as they are critical to the successful running of your tableting processes;

  • Tooling set which includes the punches and dies
  • Punch head flat
  • To head angle
  • Top head radius
  • Head back angle
  • Punch shank

Tablet press tooling

Tablet press tooling

25. What Tablet Press Tooling Designs are there?

There are several types of tablet press tooling designs.

These can be classified as standard tooling, custom tooling, and multiple tooling designs.

Standard tablet press tooling is the simplest and most affordable type of tablet press tooling for low volume productions.

Tooling design can produce tablets in different shapes such as:

  • Round
  • Oval, or
  • Other geometrical shapes

Also, standard punch and die systems can produce tablets with additional features such as logos, dividing lines or letters.

Standard tooling

Standard tooling

The second tooling option available is custom tooling design.

These ones are made according to individual specifications and needs.

If you wish to eliminate chances of counterfeits, you may need to consider a custom tooling design.

With custom tooling, you can produce tablets with out-of-the ordinary shapes that are hard to duplicate.

You can easily request that the tooling be made with a unique identity and marks to help distinguish your product from similar ones in the market.

Note however that custom tooling is more expensive than other types of tooling.

This is because the manufacturer may need to include special design features such as longer or shorter tips, special undercuts on tips, etc.

Option three is the multi-tip tablet press tooling.

These are preferred for high volume production applications such as in large pharmaceutical industries.

The advantage of multi-tip tooling is that they are able to produce more than one tablet in every punching station.

So when you opt for this type of tooling, you are guaranteed a higher output level and reduced running costs.

Multi tip tooling system

 Multi tip tooling

26. Which Material is Suitable for Tablet Press Tooling? What Determines Tablet Press Tooling Material?

Tablet press tooling is usually exposed to extreme environmental conditions as well as strong compression forces that could easily cause damage.

As such, it is important that tooling is made from high-quality material that can withstand these conditions.

Suitable material, in this case, should be cGMP compliant which guarantees that it meets the required standards of performance, longevity and reliability.

Also, the material must have desirable chemical and physical properties.

Stainless steel is quite popular as a tablet press tooling material.

It exhibits very good wear and corrosion resistance as well as formidable physical strength.

Other materials that you can consider are tungsten carbide, high carbon steel or high chrome steel.

Please note:

The choice of tablet press tooling material greatly depends on several aspects such as the condition of the machine, compression force and physical and chemical properties of the product.

You may also need to consider the cup depth and turret speed when choosing a suitable material for tablet press tooling.

27. How do you Classify Tablet Press Tooling?

Tablet press tooling come as types:

  • B
  • D
  • BB
  • DB

The difference in tooling configurations between B and D tooling is as follows;

Tooling TypeThe diameter of Punch BarrelOuter Diameter of Die
B19.0 mm30.16 mm
D25.4 mm38.10 mm
BB19.0 mm24.00 mm
DB25.4 mm30.16 mm

28. How does Tablet Specification Manual (TSM) Compare to Euro Standard (EU)?

Both TSM and EU are the internationally recognized standards of tooling configuration.

They both provide a structure that protects users’ tooling investments while maintaining set processes and procedures.

The tablet specification manual and euro standard tooling configurations tend to be very similar to others but cannot be interchanged.

Here is a table comparison of the two.

Tablet Specification Manual (TSM)Euro Standard (EU)
Punch head configurations have an angled top profilePunch head configurations have a doomed profile
Punch inside head angle for “B” punches is 37°Punch inside head angle for “B” is 30°
Greater overall head thicknessPunch head thickness is lesser
Punch length is 0.010 shorter than EUPunch head thickness is 0.010 greater than TSM

Note that the tablet specifically manual configurations govern U.S manufacturing standards for tablets and tablet tooling.

These are an establishment of the American Pharmacists Association.

They are also the only published tooling configurations for the tablet compression industry.

When it comes to the EUI standards, they are neither published nor governed by any organization.

They, however, remain to be the most common tooling configuration used in regions outside the United States.

29. How does Pre-compression compare to Main Compression? Why are they Critical?

Pre compression and compression

 Pre compression and compression

Rotary type of tablet machines incorporates a two-step compression process of tablets.

Here, granulation undergoes a first compression where it is compacted under light compression.

This first stage of compression is what we refer to as pre-compression.

After pre-compression, the tablet undergoes a second compression stage which is referred to as the main compression.

Here, a higher compression pressure is applied on the compact to ensure the proper hardness of the tablet is achieved.

The pre-compression stage, note, is usually applied to eliminate entrapped air from tablet formulations.

Lots of air in the powder can significantly affect the integrity of the tablet.

30. What is the Future Prospect of Tablet Compression Industry?

No doubt, tablets are common dosage form in many industries.

For this reason, you can be sure that the demand for tablets will always be there.

And given that they are also the most economical to produce, investing in a good quality tablet press machine should guarantee you high returns.

No matter your product specifications and application needs, you will always get a tablet presser that meets your unique requirements.

And with the rapid advancement in technology, the tablet compression industry just got better.

Now, you are assured of achieving a high turnover rate at relatively lower costs.

So as you shop for a tablet press unit for you, ensure that you go the best and latest possible features.

If your budget allows, opt for a fully automated machine unit that is easy to clean, low maintenance and accurate.

But most importantly go for a unit that is both cGMP compliant that uses 316L materials.

This will guarantee you a great ROI.

31. How do you determine the Tablet Press Production Capacity?

Mostly, the production capacity of tablet press machine will depend on the number of tooling station.

Tool station, in this case, is a combination of the upper, die and lower punches.

There are single tooling tablet press machines, then there is multiple tooling tablet press machine whose production rate is relatively higher than the single station presses.

The type of tooling that you choose will depend on your unique application requirements including output requirements.

32. Why are Tablets Popular Dosage Form?

Tablets are the most popular dosage form because of their advantages which keep increasing day by day.

They are relatively easy to manufacture.

Their light and compact nature also make them easy to package and transport.

Compared to other dosage forms, tablets tend to offer better physical and chemical stability thus facilitate simple and accurate dosing.

With tablets, a coating can be applied to easily mask bitter and nauseous substances making the tablets easy to swallow.

For aesthetic purposes, the color and shape of tablets can easily be modified to suit specific market demographics and pharmaceutical needs.

What’s more, the relatively low cost of producing tablets makes them an economical option for manufacturers, healthcare institutions and patients.

33. How does Pharmaceutical Tablet Press Control Weight of Tablets?

Tablet compression process

 Tablet compression process

A pharmaceutical tablet press machine controls tablet weight using the compression force during the manufacturing process.

This happens during the tablet compression stage.

To achieve uniform tablet weight, the gap between the rollers exerting pressure must remain constant.

This so that once tablet hardness and thickness is set, a given amount of formulation granules compressed between the punches at a fixed distance to produce the same compression force for each tablet.

If the compression force does not remain constant, it means that there are variations in the amount of granulation in the punch die cavity.

As such, you’ll need to measure the compression force and compare it against a set of control parameters to know whether the tablet is within its weight tolerance or not.

34. What are Common Problems in Tablet Compression Process?

There are several problems that can arise during tablet compression.

These include;

  • Capping; this is when the upper or lower part of tablet fractures from the main body of the tablet during ejection or handling. The problem is common when air is constantly trapped in compact during compaction.

Subsequent expansion of the tablet during ejection can also lead to this tablet capping.

To prevent or eliminate these issues, you may need to reduce compression speed, polish the punches and dies, reset punches or adjust sweep blade to facilitate proper ejection.

  • Lamination; this is when a tablet separates into two or several horizontal layers due to air-entrapment and poor tablet ejection.

High turret speed can also cause lamination of tablets.

To remedy this problem, you will need to use a tapered die or correct rapid decompression.

The later will necessitate a reduction in turret speed and final compression force.

  • Chipping; this is when tablets break off at the edges after compression or during the finishing process.

Chipping is a clear indication of machine issues, mostly incorrect parameter settings.

And to correct it, you’ll need to either polish, open-end, reverse or entirely replace the die.

You may need to polish the die and punch tips as well as concavity of punch faces.

  • Cracking; small and fine cracks on tablets could be as a result of rapid expansion of tablets. This problem is usually common when rapid concave punch faces are used.

If you’re experiencing this problem, you may need to use flat punch faces.

Using tapper die and special ejection take-off setting can also help remedy this problem.

  • Sticking and picking; when formulation granules stick on tooling, it could be a sign of poorly dried or lubricated tablet formulation.

As such, you may have to increase compression pressure or reduce turret speed.

If the issue persists, you may need to re-polish tablet press tooling.

  • Double impression; double imprinting of tablets could be as a result of the lower punch not being secure enough which could be allowing it to drop freely at a short distance thus creating new imprints on tablets.

Double impression can also occur if the upper punch is unrestricted allowing it to accidentally rotate and imprint tablets for the second time.

To remedy a case of double impression, you’ll need to key- in tooling or use machinery with pre-installed anti-turning features.

35. How do you Maintain Pharmaceutical Tablet Press Machine?

Poor tablet press condition can result in numerous tableting problems.

Luckily, you can minimize or entirely eliminate any possible problems through the following maintenance practices.

Tablet compression machine

 Tablet compression machine

  • Cleaning; always clean your tablet press machine accordingly. Ensure that you regularly remove, clean and dry tooling. Use the recommended cleaning techniques such as ultrasonic cleaning and automated washing process to avoid corrosion and damage to the machine and its parts.
  • Inspection; it is important that you regularly inspect your tablet press machine for any signs of damage, wear or tear. Regular inspections will help you detect problems early, solve them and avoid any further complications.
  • Repairs; light surface wear, damaged tooling, corrosion etc. as things that you can easily correct to retain tablet press functionality. Damage on tooling can easily cause severe tablet defects and tableting issues. It is thus important to treat and coat them to avoid such problems from arising.

Please note that tablet press and tooling repairs should be done by professional technicians.

  • Measuring; always measure your tablet press tooling to ensure that crucial dimension is maintained within acceptable tolerances. You can use a hand-held micrometer for this or veneer calipers and digital-gauging systems.
  • Polishing and coating; tablet presses need frequent controlled, light polishing to ensure the proper working condition of the tooling. It will also help to increase the longevity of the machine and its parts. The coating will help prevent sticking and picking issues during tablet manufacturing.
  • Lubricating; this is important to protect, preserve and aid the smooth running of the machine. Lubricate the tooling and all moving parts using the recommended oils and greases for your application.
  • Storing; proper storage is an essential tablet press maintenance requirement. Store the machine in a proper and secure way to minimize damage and deterioration. Tooling especially should be given high priority as it easily succumbs to elements of poor storage conditions.

36. Why Coat Tablet Press Tooling?

Coated tablet press tooling

 Coated tablet press tooling

Sticking and picking are some possible problems that you will encounter during tablet manufacturing.

These problems often arise due to inadequacies in the tablet formulation or tablet design.

Often, sticking will occur as a result of granulation sticking to the face of the punch cup.

When formulation granules stick in the letters and characters of punch embossing, then this is referred to as picking.

Both problems can cause numerous tablet defects as well as interfere with production capability.

To deal with sticking and picking issues in tablet manufacturing, coating the tablet press tooling is often advised.

Coating the punches and dies will help to facilitate product release from the punch cup.

It will also enhance the durability of the punches and dies as well as increase production output.

37. What is a Multiple Tip Tablet Press Tooling?

Multi tip tablet press tooling

 Multi tip tablet press

Multi tip tablet press tooling is fitted with multi-tip pinches that can press two or more tablets at a go.

This type of tooling usually consists of replacements for both the upper and lower punches.

These come with a variety of punch tips.

It also consists of a matching replacement for a single die with multiple holes that allow for multiple tablets to be produced from a single compression stroke.

Basically, a multi-tip tooling system is ideal for applications that aim for high productivity levels without additional cost or labor.

This tooling system will not only help you increase the rate of production, but it will also improve tableting efficiency, reduce labor as well as cut on overall running costs.

38.Why Choose Custom Tablet Press Tooling System?

When choosing to tool for your tablet press machine, you should know that one size does not fit all.

There are specific standards for tablet press tooling.

Nonetheless, you can’t always expect the standard tooling configuration to be the optimum configuration for your product.

For this reason, it is important that you get custom tooling that can be designed to your desired quality and cost affordability.

Custom tooling will ensure that you meet optimum production capability as it is designed to fit your exact needs and application

39. Why Choose Interchangeable Turrets Tablet Press?

An interchangeable tablet press turret will allow you to use the machine for a variety of tablet compression tasks.

40. How can you set up Multi-Tip Tooling Tablet Press?

Multi tip tooling tablet press tends to be a little bit challenging to set up than other types of tablet press machines.

This is because in the Multi tip tooling tablet presser, the punch and die bore have to line up precisely.

Here is how you can set up your Multi-Tip tooling tablet press;

Single punch tablet press

 Single punch tablet press

Step 1: Use high quality punch guide brush to clean the guides. Then insert the punch brush though the guides to eliminate debris and dirt.

With this, the lubrication system will remain clean hence the punches will operate smoothly.

Step 2: Insert die seat cleaner in the pocket of the tablet press die pocket then rotate the cleaner to remove debris and dirt. It will leave the die pockets clean.

Also, this allows the dies to sit flush in the pocket and also flush with the tablet press turret.

Step 3: Rotate die seat cleaner in clockwise direction as you apply pressure gently downwards to remove debris, dirt or any other contaminant in the die pocket.

Step 4: With a wrench, remove the plate on the upper punch. Using die insertion ring, push it slowly into the die. Now ensure the ring is at the center of the die pocket in the turret.

Step 5: Check and ensure that the punch and die are aligned perfectly in the turret.Use both the upper punch and die to ensure proper alignment of the tooling system.

With the upper punch being key, use a clockwise force to force the key to preload the punch.

When the punch tips are inserted into the die bore, you will know that it is completely aligned.

Step 6: With a die driving system, tap the tablet press die in die pocket.

To confirm that you have installed die properly, use a spare die or die insertion ring and run it over the turret. Ideally, this will ensure the die is always in flush with tablet press die table.

Step 7: Confirm the alignment by apply the force on the upper punch while rotating it in clockwise direction.

Any clicking sound will be a sign of misalignment between the two tooling systems (the punch and die).

During this stage, it is important to ensure the tip of the punch fits the bore of the die.

Although a very slight contact is acceptable, in case of serious misalignment, you will remove the tablet press die system.

Once there proper alignment between the die and punch tooling system, you can move to the next step.

Step 8: Insert the lock screw into the die lock hole. Screw the lock screw in until it comes to contact with the die. Tighten the screw both by hand and by screwing to ensure everything is secure.

Step 9: Insert the tablet press tooling die driving road in lower punch guide. Next, you should tap up the bottom section of the die to ensure the lock screw is fitted properly.

Step 10: Take the die insertion ring again and rub it across the top of the die table to ensure that the die did not come out.

Step 11: Confirm whether the upper punch is aligned properly.

Next, start by installing the tablet press lower punch by following these steps:

  • Spray the tablet press punch with lube
  • For the punch head, use compression tooling grease

Using acid brush, apply food-grade grease on the head.

This grease should coat outer diameters and back angle of the punch head.

You should ensure the grease is not in contact with the tablet press punch barrel.

Step 12: After greasing, position the lower punch guide then insert the tablet press punch.

Carefully rotate the punch to achieve a correct alignment.

Step 13: To ensure the punch stays in place, tighten the tablet press punch retainer. The punch system should withstand its own weight.

Remember, it is the punch retainer that secures the punch system in place.

Do not tighten it too much since it can damage the:

  • Tooling
  • Cams
  • Turret

Step 14: In case the tablet press has a lower can, ensue you fix it too.

The, go ahead to inspect heights of upper punch to ensure they don’t protrude above the die table.

On the lower take out cam, you should check to ensure the anti-flight rail does not move.

Just ensure the tooling system is in the right position.

Step 15: Fix the take out plate of the upper punch.

Now go ahead to fix the upper punch while following the steps you followed when installing the lower punch.

At this point, both the upper and lower punch should be installed.

Also, the die and punch should be aligned.

Move to the next station to complete setting up the multi-tip tooling tablet press.

41. How do you Test Quality of Tablets?

During tablet formulation and manufacturing, several tests are performed to ensure that the tablets produced to meet the required standards for quality, reliability and performance.

These tests can be categorized as pharmacopoeial and non- pharmacopoeial tests.

Pharmacopoeial tests, also known as official tests, are standardized tests with limits to which tablets produced could be accepted.

They include the content active ingredient, weight uniformity, content uniformity, disintegration time, and dissolution tests.

Generally, official tablet tests check the content and the in vitro release of the active ingredient.

What is presented here must always be in line with what is presented on each of the tests in the pharmacopeia.

Non-pharmacopoeial tests, also known as a non-official test, are QC tests that are not listed in official pharmaceutical compendia.

These tests evaluate a number of tablet quality attributes such as porosity, hardness, friability, tensile strength, thickness etc.

Some of the non-official tablet tests don’t have limits for acceptance or rejection.

Meaning.

They may vary depending on the manufacturer and formulation used.

42.bWhat Tablet Press Machines does SaintyCo Offer?

SaintyCo offers a range of tablet press machines.

SaintyCo tablet press

 SaintyCo tablet press

Our machines are based on the state of the technologies and have very unique design features.

We provide tablet presses ranging from single press options to rotary tablet press options.

Features include interchangeable turrets and ability to produce annual, irregular or engraved tablets.

You can be sure that SaintyCo tablet press machines will meet the desired OEE.

Apart from these, our tablet presses are easy to install and operate.

They have processing that is interlocked for safety yet fully accessible.

What’s more, is that all our tablet press machine are cGMP compliant.

Also, all machines parts from SaintyCo are made from 316L.

Depending on your application requirements, SaintyCo offers the following tablet compression, machine models;

43. What are Key Components of Tablet Press Machine User Requirement Specification (URS)?

A URS is a document that you write to specify the requirements of the tablet press machine you want to buy.

Considering a tablet press machine, the user requirement specification (URS) should contain the following key components;

  • Introduction; the section focuses on the definition of the machine, and background information.
  • Overview; this section should outline several of the equipment. These include the intended use of the machine, capacity, and size of the machine Vis-à-vis the available space.

The overview section should also include specific requirements of the machine including RPM, accuracy, number of baffles, tablet speed, quality of steel used etc.

You should also include the specific requirements for cleaning the unit.

  • Operational requirements; here, you should outline all the control features of the machine. This may include the ON and OFF controls, safety measures and controls, environmental condition of the area of operation. This may include temperature and humidity levels. It’s also important to outline the power requirement. Specify the necessity of power back up whereby automatic power change over the system is used or manual starting can be used.
  • Utilities; this specifies the utilities available for the operation of the machine in terms of power supply. This can be single-phase or three-phase supply, DC or AC power.
  • Abbreviation; this lists all the acronyms used in the URS with their full names and definitions
  • Supporting documents; includes a warranty, user guide, manual, spare parts, circuit diagrams etc.
  • References; it includes all the titles of references used in preparing the document. This may include technical books or manuals
  • Approval; this is the final section of a URS and it lists the writer and supervisor of the document

Please note; a URS document is a critical document when ordering a tablet press machine.

It ensures that the right machine is ordered, bought, delivered, installed and that it operates in a way that meets your unique application requirements.

44. What Should Tablet Press Factory Assessment Test Entail?

A tablet press FAT is a mandatory test conducted to ascertain that the unit is built and designed according to the given specifications.

The test entails;

  • Objective or purpose of the machine which details the machine’s specifications, design, and expected performance
  • Scope of equipment that the test governs.
  • Method of operation listing all the steps that need to be taken in case of the machine faults in operation.
  • steps taken for documentation during the test are included in it
  • criteria which the equipment and its accessories must follow
  • tests and parameters that were conducted during manufacturing which are verified during the FAT
  • Changes observed during the verification test and investigation problems, actions taken to correct these changes and whether the changes are acceptable or not.

45. Does SaintyCo help with Installation and Commissioning of Tablet Press?

Yes, we do installation commissioning.

Besides, we also train your staff on basic operation, maintenance and cleaning processes

46. What is Double Rotary Tablet Press Machine?

Magna press

Magna press

The double rotary tablet press equipmentis equipped with two sets of feeding system and two discharge chutes.

This machine does everything in double cycles including filling, pressing and ejecting tablets.

This results in a double output of tablets/pills.

So in other words, the double rotary tablet press machine gives output in doubles.

At this point, you can already tell that this is not the double-sided rotary tablet presser.

The double-sided pressing machine also comes with two sets of feeding mechanism but with one discharge chute attached to it.

It also completes every tableting revolution twice but unlike the double rotary presser, this one does not give double output.

Instead, it produces tablets/pills that are bi-layered/double-sided.