Capsule Filling Systems

Filling Equipment

Commercial-scale machines suited to filling typical lipid-based formulation products are made by such companies as Bosch, MG2 and Qualicaps and derive in design from traditional powder-fill units. Table 5 lists principal features of these capsule filling machines, which offer product flexibility with respect to dose size, temperature control, mixing capability, and fill-material characteristics. Importantly, high-precision dosing is intrinsic in the design of their volumetric liquid pumping mechanisms. Maximum doses of formulated drug substance can be estimated for the various capsule sizes on the basis of a pro-rata quantity of 250 mg to 300 mg total fill (active plus excipients) in a size zero shell, assuming the availability of a pump capable of filling a high-viscosity formulation.

Issues in Operation

The principal operating issues for these capsule filling systems relate to maximum capacity and clean-running. Output rates are much less than those for

Table 5 Features of Capsule Liquid-Filling Machines, by Manufacturer

Feature

Bosch

IMA/ Zanasi

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