Ointment Manufacturing Plant – Design, Construction, and Working Process
Ointments are some of the most common types of medicines used today. They can be used to treat surface-level injuries, burns, skin infections, pain, and more. This is one of the most significant factors contributing to the rise in ointment sales in recent years. Most pharmaceuticals are now shifting their focus towards ointments since they are easy to apply and don’t need to be swallowed or injected. For manufacturing ointments, an ointment manufacturing plant is the mechanism of choice. These robust machines help produce a large share of the ointments that are in the market today. Let’s take a look at what sets them apart.
The design and construction of these plants are unique when compared to most pharmaceutical manufacturing machines. They utilize various equipment that helps produce a variety of ointment types – ranging from gels to lotions. The capacity of these machines can be as little as 5kg, or as massive as 1000kg. They come with the following parts:
Water Phase Vessel
This is a jacketed cylindrical tank that has two dish ends in the shape of a torus. The purpose of the water phase vessel is to stir and agitate the liquid to initiate any pre-reactions that need to take place. This allows the production of ointments, which are less dense in nature.
Wax Phase Vessel
The wax phase vessel is another jacketed cylindrical tank with two torus shape dish ends. These also have a propeller stirrer that can stir and agitate the wax and create pre-reactions in it. This is then used for the production of more viscous ointments. The vessel also comes with a conical filter to remove all impurities from the wax before it is sent further for manufacturing.
This is another vessel shaped like a jacketed cylindrical tank along with a conical bottom. The agitator here isn’t a propeller but an anchor that can mix the resultant products from the wax and water phase vessels. This mixing allows the ointment to get the desired consistency. Most creams and gels use more wax than water, whereas lotions and other liquid ointments use more water than wax.
The homogenizer serves as a tank for use with the manufacturing vessel itself. It has a spinning system that ensures that uniform mixing takes place. Its tiny pores significantly reduce the size of solid particles and lumps in the mixture to allow a more consistent ointment. It is called the homogenizer since it turns the mixture entirely homogenous.
This is a large tank that has a conical bottom. The tank collects the produced ointment from the manufacturing plant and stores it until it needs to be sent for filling in tubes. It has an anchor stirrer similar to the manufacturing vessel, allowing the liquid to remain entirely consistent throughout the storage period.
The transfer pump has a twin lobe system which can transfer the product from the manufacturing vessel into the storage vessel. The pump functions with pneumatic force instead of an electrical motor to ensure that the ointment does not get contaminated in any way.
This is a crucial pump used to measure and control the ointment flow rate when it needs to be transferred to the filling line. The metering pump is a positive displacement pump that enables it to precisely control the flow rate using Bernoulli’s Principle.
The inter-connection pipeline helps transfer the ointment through its various stages within the pump. It has electropolished walls to ensure that no reactions take place while transferring the ointment.
The working platform is a large area with a control panel. This is meant to be used for the operation of the plant. Maintenance is also carried out via the working platform.
The control panel placed in the working platform has all the necessary components and controls required to operate the plant. There is a custom automation system that can allow you to customize the plant’s working as per the ointment you need to make.
The working of the ointment manufacturing plant is quite simple. It takes the ingredients in powder form, and these are then mixed with the wax and water in the respective phase vessels. The operator can control the mixing process, along with the temperature and pressure during this stage. Then, the mixed products are moved to the manufacturing vessel in a vacuum environment. The entire process is completed in a manner free of contamination and allows efficient production of large batches of ointments.
The production of ointments has become a lot more efficient with the introduction of these manufacturing plants. A majority of pharmaceuticals use them for mass-producing applicable medicines.