Scaling Tableting Processes from Compaction Simulator to Rotary Presses - Mind the Sub-Processes
Compaction simulators are frequently used in the formulation and process development of tablets, bringing about the advantages of flexibility, low material consumption, and high instrumentation to generate the most possible process understanding. However, their capability of resembling general aspects of rotary press compaction and their precision in simulating or mimicking sub-processes such as feeding and filling need to be systematically studied. The effect of material deformation behavior, blend composition, and feeding on tensile strength and simulation precision as compared with rotary presses of different scales is evaluated in this study. Generally, good simulation performance was found for the studied compaction simulator. Compaction profile-sensitivity was demonstrated for highly visco-plastic materials while shear-sensitivity in feeding was demonstrated for lubricated blends of ductile particles. Strategies for the compensation of both in compaction simulator experiments are presented by careful investigation of the compaction stress over time profiles and introduction of a compaction simulator-adapted shear number approach to account for differences in layout and operation mode between compaction simulator and rotary press, respectively. These approaches support the general aim of this study to provide a more straightforward determination of scaling process parameters between rotary press and compaction simulator and facilitate a quicker and more reliable process transfer.