An India based Antiretroviral (ARV) manufacturer, that caters for nearly 40% of the Global ARV requirement, has seen a 15-20% increase in the speed that they are able to press tablets, thanks to the implementation of Matcon’s Cone Valve technology.
The company first approached Matcon in 2010, looking to increase capacity and throughput, as well as address issues with their powder flow, waste and downtime. The existing process involved the use of vacuum transfer between processing stages, with the powder being discharged from IBCs via a butterfly valve. This procedure was causing the product to bridge in the container, resulting in the need for operators to manually hammer the bins to stimulate the powders, causing segregation issues and damage to the containers in the process. Not only was this not a cost-effective procedure, as the damage caused by the hammering meant that the containers were having to be regularly replaced, but it was also slowing down the production line, resulting in less product being made.
Improving Powder Handling With IBCs
Following discussions with the manufacturer, Matcon identified six key areas of the process to address – inconsistency of powder flow, excessive need for manual handling, powder segregation, powder bridging, lengthy cleaning time between batches and non-optimal speed of production. To rectify the identified issues, Matcon recommended their Intermediate Bulk Container (IBC) with Cone Valve technology. The technology works to solve the issues associated with powder handling by stimulating cohesive materials to flow via the cone vibration, providing control over powder flow, and overcoming segregation issues by promoting mass-flow from the sides of the container to avoid any rolling effects. The container provided the ARV manufacturer with the efficient powder handling that was needed to allow the line to work at full capacity, resulting in improved speeds and productivity. The manufacturer also reported a significant reduction in waste, as well as the removal of the need for equipment to be regularly replaced due to the damage caused by manual handling. It is now using the Matcon system to produce over 25% of their manufactured volume.
Mr Bhaskar Reddy P R, a senior executive at the ARV manufacturing company, said of the IBC system, “Matcon has solved our pain area of ensuring free flow of powder with ease of handling. The Matcon system has meant that we can guarantee a consistent flow of product to the tablet compression machine, resulting in a higher throughput and reduced scrappage of tablets. Ultimately, we are now producing more batches per day, leading to larger annual output and return on investment”
Solve Powder Handling Challenges
Matcon are at the forefront of resolving powder handling issues. Their cutting-edge decoupled IBC system, featuring Cone Valve technology, solves the everyday problems faced by powder handling companies, including pharmaceutical, chemical, nutrition and food manufacturing. Key benefits of the system include guaranteed and controlled powder flow, prevention of segregation, automated discharging procedure, complete discharge, dust-free handling, an easy-clean hygienic design and direct dosing without the need for secondary feeders. With over 35 years of experience, Matcon have come across almost all of the powder handling issues there are and solved them.