Scanning Electron Microscope Observations of Powder Sticking on Punches during a Limited Number (N < 5) of Compactions of Acetylsalicylic Acid.Pharm Res. 2017 Oct; 34(10):2012-2024.PR
To obtain quantitative information and mechanistic insight into the problem of sticking of acetylsalicylic acid tablets on a metallic punch.
Low voltage scanning electron microscopy was used to observe punch area coverage and morphology of adhered powder on a flat punch used for a limited number of compactions.
Material accumulation in terms of area coverage of the punch per compaction cycle was determined at two pressures over five compactions. The distribution of the adhered material on the punch was non-uniform with more material left on the center of the punch. The sizes of the adhered particles range from 1 to 100 μm, with 50% of the punch surface coverage from particles of an equivalent diameter > 30 μm. Three types of adhered particles were identified after the first compaction: (a) fragments of initial particles with very high aspect ratio, (b) nearly equiaxed fragments with multiple cracks, (c) heavily deformed islands of low profile. Some preliminary ideas that explain these observations are presented and discussed.
The ability of SEM to provide quantitative information on sticking from few compactions presents an interesting possibility for a material sparing technique that provides insight on the propensity of sticking.