Pharmaceutical Manufacturer Takes Full Advantage Malvern Particle Characterization System's Capabilities

Solvay Pharmaceuticals Inc. (Marietta, GA, USA) was the first company in the United States to install the innovative Morphologi G3 image analysis-based particle characterization system from Malvern Panalytical. Having invested immediately after the launch of the Morphologi G3, with installation taking place in January 2008, the company's research and development team has since taken full advantage of the system's ability to generate comprehensive particle shape as well as size information.

Solvay scientist Mychael Scoggins believes that the completeness of the data delivered by the G3 allows more discerning materials characterization. "Everyone in the company loves it," he said.

"By analyzing shape as well as size, the Morphologi G3 adds another dimension to the usefulness of particle characterization data," said Mychael Scoggins. "It is good for R&D. It helps us more fully understand the materials we are working with and what we can do with them. Having previously contracted out much of our particle characterization work, we now benefit from shortened R&D times and much richer data. We can run more samples and it is easier and quicker to interpret data generated in house."

Commenting on the practicalities of using the Morphologi G3, he went on to say: "The system is automated, intuitive to use and requires little sample preparation. Since most of our materials are dry dispersions we like the integrated sample dispersion unit, in fact we've bought an extra chamber so that one sample is being prepared while another is running. Essentially we can all get on with other things while the measurements are taking place."

The R&D team has also carried out some wet work. In one study of a wet granulation, granulation time and the amount of granulation solution sprayed were studied relative to granule growth. "Being able to look at the continuum in terms not only of granule size, but also of shape was a useful exercise in determining granule growth," said Mychael.

For the future, this team also plans to use the Morphologi G3's facility for characterizing foreign particles collected on a filter.

The Morphologi G3 from Malvern Panalytical combines microscopy and image analysis to measure the size, shape and intensity of particles from 0.5 to 10000 mm. It captures and stores images of every particle examined. Powerful software means that with just a few clicks of the mouse, data is transformed into useful information, allowing users to make decisions quickly and with confidence.

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