Pharmaceuticals and nutraceuticals are highly regulated markets. As authorities ramp up physical site inspections following the COVID-19 pandemic it is more essential than ever for companies to ensure that drugs roll off the production line in perfect condition.
Jekson Vision, global provider of market leading vision inspection systems, is targeting the UK with a new single module product sorter to help improve patient safety.
Jekson’s single line sorter is an automated system for sorting and rejecting inferior pharmaceutical and nutraceutical products from a production line.
It has the capability of spotting slight defects many times faster than the human eye via a hygienic and proven method giving 100 percent accurate results.
Keeping up with drug development for an ageing UK population and new diseases, particularly zoonotics, is challenging for the pharma industry, which needs high-quality, reliable vision solutions to avoid bottlenecks in the manufacturing process.
Tablets can get damaged in handling and transit and so they require stringent quality checks prior to packaging.
Major pharmaceutical companies across the globe are already using Jekson’s unbeatable detection and traceability solution, which is ideal for lines of blister packs or bottles and is designed in compliance with all international quality standards.
Replacing hand sorting methods, this machine is given a “recipe” of the perfect product size, shape, colour and any markings.
The kit then selects and rejects anything, however tiny, that doesn’t meet the spec such as a broken tablet, the wrong size, a foreign object, a different shape or spoiled product.
Sorting and removing imperfections also prevents issues with the packaging equipment, where faulty or flawed tablets could get stuck in the machinery and stop the line.
The need for exceptional accuracy and quality control is crucial, explains Director of Mechanical Engineering and Plant Manager at Jekson, Jim White. He explained: “When you bear in mind that in the UK market alone, around 6,300 tonnes of paracetamol are sold per year, that’s approximately 4.7 billion individual tablets needing an accurate and reliable inspection system.
“Our system can check up to 2,000 tablets a minute. This type of speed driven validation is vital to meet growing market demand.
“Of course this new sorter is an investment – but it is a considerably more affordable solution than many of our competitors can supply. Return on investment is achieved very quickly through significantly enhanced efficiencies, and we’re confident this new sorter will very quickly prove itself as an essential add-on to UK pharma production lines.”
This equipment can be supplied bespoke to a manufacturer’s requirements and the feeding tray changed to suit the tablet.
Depending on the speed of the operation and the throughput, it is possible to build the vision system into a production line to feed into the packaging station, or into a hopper.
The User Interface (UI) is accessed biometrically and every action is recorded, so that changes are tracked to the individual, and access is restricted for safety.
The UI can also be accessed remotely by the service team for training and resolving any issues.
The vision system tracks the tablets through the inspection area, quickly spotting imperfections. Cameras have a mapped field of vision and when a reject is spotted, it is tracked to the “blow-out” zone where a puff of compressed air removes the tablet from the line and into the reject tray.
Although the technology is complex, the compact design is simple to operate, and offers a great solution to manufacturers or co-packers of tablets, whether medicinal or nutraceutical.
It is simply “plug in and play” once attached to compressed air and electricity supplies, and lease options are also available.
Jekson’s market-leading inspection system, already widely used in the United States – the world’s largest pharmaceutical market – is now available in the UK offering complete solutions across the various stages of packaging.
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