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Lamination of pharmaceutical tablets due to air entrapment: Direct visualization and influence of the compact thickness

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Capping and lamination pose common challenges in the industrial production of pharmaceutical tablets, with various proposed reasons to explain these occurrences. Air entrapment is suggested as a potential factor in certain cases, although direct evidence supporting the idea that it can promote lamination or capping has been lacking. This article provides tangible proof of the involvement of air entrapment in lamination using a model product compacted on a compression simulator. Surface defects with a spherical shape, clearly associated with trapped air bubbles, emerged just below the pressure level at which lamination occurred. Additionally, as the compact thickness increased, the lamination pressure decreased, indicating that compact thickness could contribute to lamination. Contrary to some literature, this study establishes that air entrapment can play a role in lamination issues, emphasizing the importance of considering powder desaeration in such cases.
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