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Less noise, cleaner data: FT4 Powder Rheometer proves critical to modelling studies at RCPE Graz

Researchers at the RCPE (Research Center Pharmaceutical Engineering) in Graz, Austria, are finding the reproducibility of the  FT4 Powder Rheometer from Freeman Technology  crucial to the success of their work on modelling powder behaviours. The RCPE is a unique internationally operating European research institute in the area of pharmaceutical process and product development, and a focal point for rational and science-based development of novel pharmaceutical drug products, as well as their manufacturing processes.

The FT4 is being used in a number of areas, one of which is the development of models that support the optimisation of powder blending, a critically important industrial operation.  A notable success has been achieved with models that allow the successful correlation of powder blend characteristics with the properties of the constituents.

Commenting on his group’s use of the FT4, Deputy Director of the RCPE Dr Simon Fraser said, "Reproducibility was a major factor in our choice of powder testing instrument for this work. The FT4 delivers extremely high reproducibility, greater than that achievable with alternative techniques and instruments, giving us the cleanest possible data sets for modelling. Added to that we have enjoyed highly knowledgeable support from Freeman Technology who have engaged with and encouraged this research from the outset."

Using a Design of Experiments (DoE) approach and multivariate data analysis (MVDA), the research team has developed reliable models for the prediction of a number of different blend properties. NIR spectroscopy has been used to monitor the efficiency of blending in further trials conducted to link off-line tests on constituents and well-defined powder blends with the actual industrial powder blending process. This work continues with more experiments planned.

The FT4 Powder Rheometer delivers precise and highly reproducible dynamic, shear and bulk powder measurement.  Automated well-defined measurement protocols include a conditioning step, prior to analysis to provide the most stable of baselines for measurement. Sensitive and flexible, the FT4 is widely used for process-related studies across the pharmaceutical industry and other industry sectors.

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