Capsule Inspection Machine-The Ultimate Guide

Owning a capsule inspection machine is important quality control in capsule filling process.

And, I know you might be looking for a machine that will assist you to inspect the types of capsules you are producing.

But, the lack of information is hindering your progress.

Well, if that is the case, look no further.

This guide will take you through every detail that you need to know about the capsule inspection machine.

Let’s find out more in the following guide.

Capsule Inspection Machine Basics

Generally, the capsule inspection machine assists in the inspection of capsules.

It inspects if the capsules are broken, spotty, or do not meet the set standards by vision.

Defects in capsules

Defects in capsules

The machine depends on the mechanical rotation of the capsules through 360 degrees.

It also turns the capsules on different surfaces as it figures out the faults on the capsules.

In the long run, the machine will reject any defective capsule before leaving the manufacturing area.

Benefits of Capsule Inspection Machine in Pharmaceutical Industry

Some of the main reasons why you need a capsule inspection machine include:

Capsule inspection and rejection machine

Tablet inspection and rejection machine

i. Highly consistent and accurate inspection

The machine is able to provide very accurate results and will not allow any capsule with defects.

ii. Automatic generation of batch reports

As it inspects the capsules, it generates batch reports.

You will be able to control the quality of the inspection by looking at the batch report.

iii. Simple and effective setting of the inspection parameters

Operating a capsule inspection machine is very simple.

You can easily set the parameters you need for the inspection of the capsules.

iv. Patent Stable Conveyor

The conveyor belt is stable and has the ability to transport the capsules at a high speed.

v. Comprehensive user interface

The machine has a central user interface with a touchscreen panel.

You are able to operate and monitor the operations using this interface.

vi. Durability

Manufacturers use very strong materials such as stainless steel to make the parts of the machine.

The materials can last longer and are not susceptible to rampant damage.

vii. Easy to clean

You can easily dismantle the main parts of the machine without any tools in a short time.

You can, therefore, clean it with no risk of cross contamination.

You will not need the assistance of an external vacuum cleaner as it has an internal suction system.

Advantages of Tablet & Capsule Inspection Machine

Let me tell you one thing:

Do you know some of these machines are multifunctional?

Well, you can inspect both tablets and capsules. Like this one:

The capsule inspection machine has the ability to multi-function.

It is suitable for all round inspection of a very wide spectrum of capsule defects.

It can inspect a wide variety of capsules such as monochrome or bicolor capsules.

Apart from that, it will also inspect the capsules with or without markings.

Also, the machine inspects the tablets within a very short period.

The short period, together with the multi-function will save on the cost of operation.

This is especially true when you are operating a capsule filling and tablet press machine.

You will save on a lot of money that could have gone to waste.

With the benefits and advantages at your fingertips let’s have a look at the parts.

Main Parts of Capsule Inspection Machine

There are quite a number of types of Softgel inspection machines available in the market.

Despite the fact that they perform the same function, they may have different parts.

Parts of capsule inspection machine

Parts of capsule inspection machine

In this section, we will look at the main parts that you will find in most capsule inspection machines.

· Rotary double drum

The drums have a special design that handles products with minimal risk of damage.

It holds the capsules in position by the vacuum system.

Besides, it enables the acquisition of capsule images across the whole surface.

· Inspection Windows

This is the part of the machine with the vision system.

You will use the inspection windows to observe the capsules as they move from one place to another.

You can also view any defects that might be on the capsules and eliminate them if possible.

· Conveyor belt or Conveyor Drive

The machine has a conveyor belt that will transport the capsules from one station to another.

Section of conveyor belt system

Section of conveyor belt system

The size of the conveyor belt will vary according to the size of the machine.

Most of the machines have a control panel that will allow you to adjust the speed of the conveyor drive.

· User Interface

Most modern capsule inspection machines have a user interface.

This is the display that will allow you to inspect the operations of the machine.

Most capsule inspection machines feature easy to use HMI with PLC system.

· Power Supply (230v, 50 Hz AC)

All the capsule inspection machines depend on electricity to power its operations.

The power supply system varies depending on the type of inspection machine that you are using.

· Roller Drive

The roller drive has the ability to rotate and expose the capsules from all angles.

As it rotates, you can observe and inspect the capsules for any defects.

Section of the roller drive

Section of the roller drive

· Conveyor Speed Regulator

The conveyor speed regulator is part of the control panel.

It assists in setting and regulating the speed of the conveyor belt.

· Illuminator

A capsule inspection machine must have an illuminator.

They may be available in different forms but perform the same function.

The illumination increases the visibility of the capsules for perfect inspection.

· Vibrator

Most of the machines have a vibrator that will assist in shaking the capsules.

As the capsules shake, they are able to turn and expose all the sides.

You will, therefore, have a good view of the whole capsule for maximum inspection.

· Hopper or Feed Hopper

This is the part of the inspection capsule machine that feeds it with the capsules.

It assists in the transfer of capsules from the manufacturing unit to the inspection unit.

The sizes will vary depending on the type of the machine.

· Trays

The trays are the receivers and transfer devices of the capsules.

They act as the containers for collecting the capsules that have undergone inspection.

You will also use the trays to transfer the capsules from one unit to the next.

Working Principle of Capsule Inspection Machine

The capsule inspection machine depends on a particular working principle to inspect the capsules.

In some instances, you will identify it as the operation procedure of the capsule inspection machine.

Remember that there are different types of capsule inspection machine and the operation procedure might differ.

In this section, you will go through a step by step operation procedure of the capsule inspection machine.

Before you begin the operations it is important to ensure that all the details are in order.

In many cases, you should use a technician with relevant experience such as a production pharmacist.

With the help of an operator, make sure you indicate every aspect of the process as you proceed.

First, you will have to do a thorough inspection of the capsule inspection machine.

Inspect the parts such as the feeders, hoppers, trays, and conveyor belt among other parts.

Do not forget to check the amount of capsules available for inspection.

After that, fix the feeder, hopper and the trays in the right position.

Switch on the machine to allow the electric supply to flow.

The conveyor belt will start moving and you should adjust the speed according to your inspection convenience.

At the same time, switch on the tube lights to increase the visibility of the capsules.

As this continues, you can transfer tablets to the hopper.

At the same time, adjust the vibration of the machine.

The vibration should be in such a way that you can achieve an optimum and uniform flow of the capsules.

Illustration of the inspection process

Illustration of the inspection process

The capsules will move from the hopper to the vibratory chute.

At this point, a perforated screen will eliminate coarse chips and dust.

Here, the capsules will flow to the inspection stage in one layer.

The capsules flowing from the vibratory chute will rotate continuously on rotating rollers in front of the operator.

This ensures a reliable visual inspection from all sides.

With the help of an adjustable mirror, the operator can inspect both sides of the product.

 

Figure 7 Mirror

Your level of engagement will depend on the type of machine you are using. Fully automatic machines will require very minimal level of engagement.

Despite that, you should use your level of expertise to inspect the capsules in case of any defects.

The machine will inspect the capsules for cracking, appearance, black particles, and broken capsules among other defects.

Remember, the mode of inspection will also depend on the type of machine.

Modern machines will use very powerful cameras to capture the images of the capsules. The images will go through a special phase of image analysis to identify any defects.

It will automatically feed the information to the system to isolate the capsules with potential defects.

As an example, the CES capsule inspection machine combine inline CCD cameras with computer image processing technology. It will inspect and sort the capsules on the criteria set by the customer.

It has 3 cameras that can inspect nine capsules in a row.

The cameras are very powerful and can scan and relay the information about 500 times at very high speed.

Therefore, the good capsule will flow to a different direction from the ones with potential defects.

Collect them in different containers and weigh them.

Label the containers appropriately as rejects for proper accountability.

Do the same for the good capsules and label the details properly on them.

Remember to switch off the machine after the inspection process is complete.

Capsule Inspection Machine Technical Specifications

Technical specification of capsule inspection machine

Technical specifications of capsule inspection machine

Before you purchase a capsule inspection machine, it is important to consider the following key aspects:

1. Capsule sizes and shape

Capsule inspection machines can inspect capsules of different sizes.

However, you have to know the minimum thickness of the capsules that you intend to inspect.

Most machines are able to inspect capsules up to a minimum range of 3mm.

Remember that the minimum thickness a machine can handle will depend on the type of machine.

2. Output

Capsule inspection machines can comfortably inspect different quantities of capsules at a time.

The output will depend on the type of machine, type of product and size of the product.

Most of them can inspect up to 120,000 capsules in an hour or approximately 50 kg of tablets per hour.

3. Feed Hopper

The number of tablets that a feed hopper can supply to the machine varies.

Normally, the variation will depend on the number of capsules that the machine can handle and size of the feeding hopper.

In many cases, most feed hoppers can handle approximately 30 L of capsules at a time.

4. Electrical Connection

Capsule inspection machines will require different electrical inputs to power its operations.

The electrical connection will depend on the size of the capsule inspection machine.

Also, the electrical connection can either be 220V/50Hz single phase or 110V/60Hz single phase.

5. Power Inputs

The power input can also vary depending on the size of the machine.

The most common power input is often 0.6 kw.

6. Compressed Air

Air compression on the capsule inspection machine can either be 0.6Mpa and above.

The rating will depend on the size of the machine and the number of capsules it can handle.

7. Dimensions

The dimensions on the machine will determine the size of the machine and are always in mm.

You can find a machine with dimensions such as 1850 by 850 by 1315 mm.

8. Weight

The bigger the machine, the heavier it will be.

The weight of the machine is in kilograms.

Following the dimensions above, the weight would probably be 125 kg.

Considerations When Buying Automatic Capsule Inspection Machine

There are many challenges you might face when looking for a good capsule inspection machine.

To avoid such challenges, there are a number of factors that you need to look at.

Section of capsule inspection machine

Section of capsule inspection machine

In this section, you are going to learn about the factors to consider when purchasing an automatic capsule inspection machine.

i. Model/brand

Different manufacturers produce different brands or models of capsule inspection machines.

Some of the manufacturers produce quality products which can perform and last longer.

Look at the brands that most of the people use as capsule inspection machines.

ii. Output or production capacity

Capsule inspection machines are available in different production and output production capacities.

Depending on the scale of production, you will have to consider the output capacity of the machine.

Let us have a look at the low speed capsule inspection machine and the high speed capsule inspection machine.

Low speed capsule inspection machine inspects a limited number of capsules at a particular time.

In comparison to the high speed capsule inspection machine, the output production capacity is very low.

Most of the low speed capsule inspection machines are often semi-automatic.

High speed capsule inspection machine employs the use of modern technology such as cameras for inspection.

It employs the use of different powerful cameras that focus on different angles of the capsule.

Remember, it enables it to accurately inspect a high number of capsules within a very short time.

iii. Quality compliance (FDA, CE, ISO, cGMP)

Consider a machine that complies to the quality standards set by different governing bodies.

Some of the common quality compliance institutions include FDA, CE, ISO, and CGMP among others.

Let’s have a look at some of them.

FDA is the food and drug administration which is a federal agency of the United States.

It is responsible for making sure that all products meet the health requirements.

CE is a mark that will indicate that particular product safety, health, and environmental protection.

ISO certification will ensure that the product complies to the customer and other stakeholders.

It also ensures that the product meets the regulatory and statutory requirements.

cGMP is an abbreviation for current good manufacturing practices.

This mark of quality ensures that the machine conforms to modern manufacturing practices.

iv. Material

The most common material manufacturers use in making the machine is stainless steel.

A good machine should have strong and durable material.

The material should be strong enough to withstand the vibration of the machine without any damages.

Apart from that, the material should not react to the capsules you intend to inspect.

v. Accuracy

The accuracy level of the machine should also be on point.

The capsules are very sensitive and any fault may lead to extensive damages.

It is, therefore, important to consider a machine that is as accurate as possible in inspection.

vi. Ability to inspect all sides of capsules

A good capsule inspection machine should be able to inspect all the sides of the capsules.

It must have the ability to rotate the capsules and inspect for any defects.

Remember to choose a machine that can inspect every side of the capsule under inspection.

vii. Easy to clean and maintain

Capsule inspection machines should be easy to clean and maintain after use.

Choose a machine that you can easily break into parts and clean.

The machine should also give you an allowance to replace the warn out parts with available spare parts.

SaintyCo Capsule Inspection System

SaintyCo produces state of the art capsule and inspecting machines.

The machine is flexible with an adjustable rotation and inspection speed.

SaintyCo inspection machine

SaintyCo inspection machine

The machine complies to the quality standards such as FDA with proper illumination.

It has a handheld vacuum nozzle to eliminate defective capsules.

It is automatic with a foot pedal switch to stop the conveyor belt at any time.

Conclusion

What are you waiting for?

Feel free to take a tour and visit different manufacturers and compare some of the products.

All the information you need are at your fingertips.

Make sure you use it appropriately in negotiating a good deal.

Dial your suppliers number and discuss the terms of ordering a custom capsule inspection machine.

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