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Pharmaceutical Industry review/Фармацевтична галузь, 2022, №4 (93) October

Reliable solutions by Countec for accurate counting of tablets and capsules

Countec has been supplying equipment for the pharmaceutical industry for more than 40 years. The equipment is widely used in the pharmaceutical industry for packaging of medicines, vitamins and nutritional supplements in bottle.

We can offer you tablet packaging equipment ranging from semi-automatic systems for R&D and pilot production to high-performance automatic lines. The counting equipment is designed to work with tablets, hard and soft gelatin capsules, granules of different sizes and shapes.

For example, the desktop semi-automatic counter DMC-4 allows you to achieve a productivity of up to 1,500 tablets or capsules per minute. The high-performance counter DMC-300 has a capacity of up to 25,000 tablets or capsules per minute.

The automatic line for packing tablets or capsules into bottles will consist of the following units:

  1. Machine for bottle blowing
  2. Tablets and capsules inspection
  3. Tablets or capsules counting machine
  4. Inserter of a cotton pad or moisture absorber
  5. Clogging unit
  6. Induction sealing unit
  7. Sealing inspection unit
  8. Checkweigher
  9. Labeling
  10. Secondary packaging in shrink film and boxes, case packers

The principle of operation of the counting machines is the uniform supply of tablets from the hopper through vibrating chutes to the photocells unit, where counting and quality analysis takes place, the unit of shutters and guides for feeding the product into the bottles. The exit from the hopper is equipped with an adjustable "window" for feeding the product to several vibrating chutes installed one after the other. Due to the adjustment of the height of the "window" and the vibration of the chutes, a uniform supply of tablets or capsules to the counting unit is achieved. The block of photocells will consist of several streams, the number of which depends on the performance of the machine. A valve with an electromagnetic drive is installed under each stream.

Photosensors are installed in each stream, which with the help of a mathematical apparatus, in accordance with the settings of the product format, allow the PLC to calculate the number of tablets or capsules falling under the influence of gravity from the vibrating chutes to the photocell block. The shutters on the streams allow you to accumulate the necessary amount of product, which will be loaded to the bottle when they are opened. Several photocells are installed on each stream, this allows you to remove defective tablets or capsules, since the time of the signals (dark and light phases) will be different for damaged ones (halves or doubled).

The undoubted advantage of counting machines for tablets and capsules based on photocells is the minimization of mechanical impact on the product. Also, counters based on photocells are easy to scale from laboratory to industrial, because the performance of the system depends on the performance of each stream and their number. The minimum required number of format parts when changeover is also an indisputable advantage over mechanical ones.



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