Wet granulation in laboratory-scale high shear mixers: Effect of chopper presence, design and impeller speed

Abstract : The effect of the main means of agitation in a high shear mixer has been investigated in this study. Granulation runs have been performed on a fine cohesive microcrystalline cellulose powder (Avicel 105, d(50) = 20 mu m) often used as a pharmaceutical excipient in tablet formulations in two bowls of a Mi-Pro (R) laboratory high shear mixer with a capacity of 0.9 and 1.9 L, respectively. Torque curves recorded during granulation are found to allow good control of the process while increasing impeller speed is found to generally reduce granule size and the onset of breakage seems to occur for similar values of impeller tip speed. As a general rule, the chopper allows for better binder distribution in the Mi-Pro (R) and is found to be necessary for successful granulation at low to moderate impeller speeds. For high impeller speeds in excess of 4.4 m/s with or without a chopper, similar granule sizes and growth mechanisms are observed. Granule roundness was found to increase with impeller speed up to a certain speed after which granule roundness has been found to decrease with increasing impeller speed most probably because of increased breakage of the granules. Dry granule strength has been found to increase with increasing impeller speed, presenting only a slight decrease at the highest impeller speed studied.
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Toma Mihai Chitu, Driss Oulahna, M. Hemati. Wet granulation in laboratory-scale high shear mixers: Effect of chopper presence, design and impeller speed. Powder Technology, Elsevier, 2011, 206 (1-2, SI), p.34-43. ⟨10.1016/j.powtec.2010.07.016⟩. ⟨hal-01626705⟩

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