Korsch introduces next-generation mid-range tablet press


X 3 Tablet Press incorporates production capabilities and versatility traditionally limited to large-scale production machines

X 3 SFP Dedicated Single-Layer Mid-Range Production

X 3 SFP Dedicated Single-Layer Mid-Range Production

State-of-the-art-tableting technology meets the midrange segment at last. The days of having to compromise are over. Korsch is introducing a groundbreaking mid-range tablet press incorporating innovative features previously available only on large production machines. The new X 3 Tablet Press is a single-sided rotary press that redefines this market segment, with flexible technology and a new approach to architectural and ergonomic design.

Suitable for product development, scale-up, clinical production, mid-range production and continuous manufacturing, the next-generation X 3 Tablet Press is available in two models. The X 3 SFP is a dedicated single-layer press capable of 266.400 tablets/hour, while the X 3 MFP offers flexible single-layer (266.400/hour) and bi-layer (133.200 /hour) production capability.

Among other innovations, the X 3 incorporates a flexible manufacturing experience atypical for its size, with an integrated electrical cabinet, torque drive, fully sealed design, and unsurpassed accessibility for cleaning, changeovers and maintenance. Installation options include a conventional inroom layout, through-the-wall mounting, and a portable equipment platform. The X 3 offers a range of product containment configurations, including OEB 3, as well as OEB 4/5 with full wash-in-place and high-containment execution.

X 3 maximizes flexibility, efficiency and output

Of note, the X 3’s exchangeable turret technology allows for an extremely fast transition between products, and the ability to produce a tablet of any size and shape. A mixed turret, with B and D punch bores, permits the ability to conduct product development with reduced tools and to change tooling formats without requiring a turret exchange. The X 3 can be fully instrumented for the measurement of precompression, main compression and ejection forces; for even more detailed analysis, an optional, integrated data acquisition system offers full characterization of the force-time waveform, and documentation of scale-up parameters.

For mid-range manufacturing, the X 3 offers a long filling length and large, variable-speed power feeder for precision die filling at extremely high speeds. For changeovers, superior compression zone access, smooth surfaces, and minimal fast change parts yield an expedited process formaximized machine uptime. This combination of high-speed and fast-change translate to unprecedented efficiency for the mid-range market segment.

The unique Korsch machine structure allowing the elimination of corner columns, combined with large windows, provide excellent visibility and unlimited access to the compression zone for streamlined changeover and turret exchange. At the rear of the machine, a multi-function column with two separate compartments houses the electrical components and the main dust extraction connection, while the water-cooled chiller serves both the torque drive and heat exchanger. The result is a fully sealed machine with no heat transfer to the compression zone of the press, or to the compression room. This closed design also eliminates potential contamination in the machine base or electrical cabinet, and further expedites the changeover process.

The X 3 also minimizes both noise and vibration. A carrier plate supporting the dual column for preand main compression is mounted on pneumatic dampers – a patented design that fully isolates vibration from the head piece and machine base. The result is significantly reduced operating noise (< 80 dB) and elimination of vibration transmission. The dual compression column is fixed on the carrier plate and features a swiveling lower compression roller design to facilitate expedited cleaning and turret exchange.

Fit for a Pharma 4.0 future

The machine control system is based on Siemens SIMOTION using a smart-touch HMI with extensive onboard operation and maintenance assistance, delivering an intuitive operator experience. The operator gains access to all process data and documentation as well as to comprehensive help documents during ongoing operation. Korsch PharmaView, a holographic operational assistant, based on Microsoft HoloLens augmented reality technology, can also be used on the X 3. The Augmented Reality glasses beam holograms and additional information into the user’s actual visual axis, enabling guided, hands-free setup, operation and maintenance support. The remote service via video call permits secure, streamlined troubleshooting that saves time, reduces costs, and improves overall efficiency.

Korsch tablet presses are designed to dovetail with the smart factory concept and the X 3 is no exception. Smart sensor technology with an IO-Link for data pre-processing enables a new level of centralized data collecting process and of machine parameters storage. Electronic type plates also log the type, configuration and calibration of each component. All data can be transferred via a proprietary secure cloud solution or Korsch-PharmaInsights. A sophisticated analysis of performance indicators can then help to localize immediate (OEE) optimization potential, to increase machine availability and output, to reduce energy consumption and to coordinate maintenance intervals better. Central formulation management, batch report archiving, and predictive maintenance functions are just initial examples of the smart use of data to ensure that production is always efficient and transparent and to keep total operating costs low.

Official market launch in September

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Potential buyers can find out everything about the tablet press innovation of the year at www.maximizing-mid-range.com. The X 3 is also available for demonstration at the Korsch Innovation Centre in Berlin following its official market launch in September.