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Terahertz pulsed imaging and near infrared imaging to monitor the coating process of pharmaceutical tablets
Research Area: Pharmaceutical Technology Year: 2009
Type of Publication: Article Keywords: Near infrared (NIR) imaging
  • Lene Maurer
  • Hans Leuenberger
Terahertz pulsed imaging (TPI) and near infrared (NIR) imaging were used to non-destructively monitor the coating process of film-coated tablets. Samples that were taken from a pan coater at different time points were analyzed by both methods. TPI provided coating thickness maps over the whole surface of the tablets, determining the thickness of the coating at each point of the sample surface in [mu]m, this way also giving information about the coating uniformity. The growth of the coating during the coating process was shown. NIR imaging did not provide direct thickness values, but by different absorbance values, inter- and intra-tablet differences were shown. Thus, coating thickness information was also obtained in a way that different tablets could be compared. The growth of the coating layer during the process was shown as well. Both methods provided comparable results; and they were able to detect small defects in the coating. With TPI, the whole tablet surface could be scanned; with NIR imaging information about the tablet ends at the center-band was not obtained due to the strong curvature. NIR imaging proved to be better at thinner coating layers and had a higher spatial resolution whereas TPI had the clear advantage that it provided direct thickness values.
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