Innomech Develops Pilot-Scale Production System for Aston Particle Technologies

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The new system will help accelerate the commercialization of Aston Particle Technologies’ dry particle coating technology.

Automation consultancy Innomech has developed a pilot-scale production system for Aston Particle Technologies (APT) that will help the company accelerate the commercialization of its innovative dry particle coating technology. The one-step particle engineering technology by APT enables challenging APIs to be dry powder coated onto carrier particles without the need for heat and solvents. The technology can be applied in the development of dry powder inhaler formulations, solubility enhancement of poorly soluble drugs, and taste-masking of bitter-tasting drugs.

The new easy-to-use system, designed by Innomech, can process up to two kilograms of pharmaceutical powders-a 100-fold increase on the capacity of APT’s existing lab-scale equipment. The system provides a fluidized environment for particle contact and adsorption of cohesive material over coarse particles without the need for heat and solvents. It has pressure and temperature sensors, and an ultra-efficient heat exchanger for monitoring and maintaining the required process conditions.

A touchscreen integrated with a recipe-based control system allows operators to key in the required process conditions for specific production batches. Surfaces and gas flow paths that come into contact with pharmaceutical powders have been kept to a minimum for easy cleaning and maintenance. A high efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filtration system ensures operator safety.


APT is a spin-out from The School of Pharmacy at Aston University. It was founded in 2016 with seed investment and a major Innovate United Kingdom grant.

Source: Innomech