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Re-evaluation of the diametral compression test as a rupture test for pharmaceutical tablet: insertion of flat ends and defects of controlled size

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The mechanical strength of pharmaceutical tablets holds significant importance, commonly assessed in the pharmaceutical field through the diametral compression test (Brazilian test). However, the conventional approach of this test, characterized by a small contact area between the tablet and platens, may lead to failure occurring in tension away from the center, compromising the test results and tensile strength calculation. This study proposes an alternative by employing a flattened disk geometry to address contact issues. Both finite element method (FEM) numerical simulation and high-speed video acquisitions during the test were utilized to verify that the use of perfectly cylindrical tablets does not allow the initiation of cracks at the center, unlike the flattened geometry.
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