New Technologies Displayed at INTERPHEX - Pharmaceutical Technology

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PharmTech Europe

New Technologies Displayed at INTERPHEX
Our Packaging Forum editor reports on the infamous US trade show, INTERPHEX. Highlights included the latest in pharmaceutical packaging equipment, containers and labels, as well as new capabilities among contract service providers.


Pharmaceutical Technology Europe
Volume 24, Issue 6

Other equipment

A versatile, servo-driven blister packager thermoforms or coldforms blisters up to 40 mm deep and features tool-less changeover. An integrated print station prints on the top or bottom of the lidstock depending on how the material is threaded. An autolift mechanism protects heat-sensitive products by raising the seal station if the machine stops (BP540 blister machine, Pentapack NA).

Bowl feeders for stoppers and other small parts change over without tools, thus reducing downtime from 10–30 min to less than 1 min. Patent-pending units simply unlatch and lift off; the unlatching/latching mechanism can be automated (QS Systems bowl feeders, Service Engineering).

Dots of an instant-bonding, pressure-sensitive adhesive are dispensed from a paper carrier web to provide a competitively priced alternative to hot melt for sealing folding cartons or attaching inserts/outserts to packaging. Eliminating hot melt reduces waste, clean-up tasks, warm-up time and burn hazards. Once adhered, the FDA-compliant pressure-sensitive adhesive peels cleanly with no fibre tear or residual staining, thus making it wellsuited for use with inserts or other materials where print must remain undamaged. A video trial programme allows prospective purchasers to see how the automated applicator works for their application before they buy a system (SD-900 applicator for Glue Dots brand adhesive, Glue Dots International).

A lab-scale unit punches and seals lidstock to unit-dose containers. The tabletop, servo-driven machine monitors force, time and temperature and handles either peelable or nonpeelable lidstock (RD 06 punching and sealing machine, Rychiger US).

Packagers who need containment or an aseptic filling environment can retrofit a flexible isolator with clear polyurethane or PVC walls that allow operators more freedom of movement than rigid counterparts. Systems are compatible with negative air pressure or nitrogen atmospheres. Single-use systems eliminate much of the cleaning and validation required with conventional rigid isolators (Ace flexible wall isolators, Telstar North America).

An inkjet printer handles print widths from 108 to 540 mm (4.26 to 21.26 in.) at speeds of up to 100 m (328 ft) per min. Ultraviolet ink dries instantly and doesn't absorb or bleed to produce crisp alphanumeric characters as small as 4-point. Designed for mounting on horizontal form-fill-seal, blister and flow pack machines, the digital coder also reproduces serialized numbers, one and two-dimensional barcodes, and graphics at a resolution of 600 dpi (InteliJet HD inkjet printer, Bell-Mark Corp.).

INTERPHEX returns to New York's Javits Center April 23–25, 2013.

Hallie Forcinio is Packaging Forum editor
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