Spheronizers (also known as spheroidizers) are used to create spherical products that are more attractive or to fulfill specific product performance characteristics through spheronization. Our Spheronizers are implemented to produce uniform spheres for a wide range of technical as well as marketing driven reasons. Spheronization can be used to provide the following:
- Lower dusting and fines generation
- Produce granule with a smooth surface
- Densify the surface of the sphere for stability
- Minimize coating material necessary
- Increase flowability
- Increase bulk density
Narrow size distribution is controlled through the use of one of our low pressure extruders such as our Basket Extruder to closely define the diameter of the feed material for the Spheronization Process.
Process Description: Feed material to the Spheronizer falls onto the already rapidly rotating plate inside the walls of the Spheronizer. This plate contains many small sharply edged pyramids which cut the extrudates to length at approximately 1 to 1.5 times their diameter. Centrifugal and gravitational forces create a mechanically fluidized ring of these particles which are impacting not only the plate but also each other and the walls with great velocity. With these impacts, they are reformed into spheres with a slight surface densification. Fines which were generated during the process are worked back into the spheres themselves leaving a very low dusting process with spheres which tend not to dust because of their slightly harder exterior and lack of corners.
Variables for this spheronization process include the formulation, the plate’s pyramid sizes, the plate’s rotational speed, and finally the time that the granules are allowed to stay inside the spheronizer.
Batch processing is typical for the requirements of pharmaceutical applications while the larger industrial spheronization applications often employ the higher capacity cascade spheronization method where granules are continuously moving through 2 or more spheronizer bowls in a cascade layout to create the final spherical form required.
Pharmaceutical spheronizers are available with capacities from 0.25 Kg per batch to 60 Kg per batch.
Industrial cascade spheronizers with capacities to 10,000 Kg per hour are available.
Testing is available to demonstrate Basket Extrusion and Spheronization technologies in our North Carolina facilities.