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Image Analysis Quantification of Sticking and Picking Events of Pharmaceutical Powders Compressed on a Rotary Tablet Press Simulator

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Objective This study aimed to develop a quantification method utilizing image analysis to characterize sticking during pharmaceutical tableting. The research focused on exploring the relationship between image analysis features and pertinent mechanical parameters obtained from an instrumented tablet press simulator. Methods Image analysis, employing gray levels co-occurrence matrices (GLCM), generated textural features representing the tablet surface. The tablet press simulator (Stylcam® 200R, Medelpharm), equipped with force and displacement transducers, provided precise recordings. The investigation involved studying tablet defects and compaction process parameters using three pharmaceutical powders (Fast-Flo® lactose, anhydrous Emcompress® and Avicel® PH200 microcrystalline cellulose), five compression pressures (60 to 250 MPa), five lubricating levels, and three types of punches (standard steel, amorphous hard carbon, and anti-sticking punches). Results Texture parameters facilitated precise quantification of tablet aspects. The selected parameter IC2 (Information on Correlation 2), plotted against the ratio of ejection shear stress (Esh) to compression pressure (Cp), revealed a significant knowledge space. Within this space, it was possible to identify both normal and degraded tableting modes. A positive correlation between these two parameters was observed. Conclusion The positive correlation between the Esh/Cp ratio and image analysis results suggests that this ratio serves as an insightful indicator of tablet defects.
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