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01.10.2012 Deagglomerating lumps in pharmaceutical powders

At one of its pharmaceutical plants Novartis has recently installed a DelumpWitt, the newly developed crushing and milling unit manufactured by Frewitt, Granges-Paccot, Switzerland. Active substances and processing agents used in the production of medications  for adult-onset diabetes are delivered to the facility in 25kg capacity cartons fitted with inliners. The powder contents often include lumps due to their hygroscopic properties, compaction caused by transport or the ambient temperature. Previously these products had to undergo a laborious two-step process involving deagglomeration followed by grinding.

The system that Frewitt set up for Novartis, whereby agglomerates and lumps can be gently broken and ground to the preset particle size, brought about a number of substantial improvements. Powder losses have been considerably reduced and the DelumpWitt is much easier to clean than the earlier equipment that it replaces.


Novartis engineers have reported the following additional advantages:


  • The streamlined process has enabled a 30% reduction in investment costs
  • It was possible to save €500,000 in infrastructure design
  • Production was increased by 70%
  • The new system takes up 50% less space.


DelumpWitt from Frewitt installed above an IBC



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