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Cold and flu

The need for oil free compressors in cold and flu medication production.

Flu season is upon us and COVID is still making its presence known, so many of us are reaching for cold and flu medication more often than usual. Paracetamol medications have become particularly popular in recent years as a simple and inexpensive remedy for managing the symptoms of COVID, as well as the usual colds, flus and viruses of the season. This is in addition to their general use for the pain of headaches, toothaches, muscle aches, and period pain. With such a wide range of applications, ‘household’ medications like paracetamol have an expectation of infinite supply attached to them from the market. Having the right equipment for manufacturing them is therefore essential – not only do compressors have a vital role at various stages of the production process, their oil free status is crucial.

Aspen pharmaceuticals produce cold and flu medications at their Dandenong branch In Victoria. They upgraded their equipment with Sullair and replaced older compressors with Sullair oil free screw compressors along with the necessary ancillary equipment. Sullair developed a complete turnkey solution for them that included desiccant dryers, air receivers, a filtration system, instrumentation, drainage network and all-in stainless-steel piping. The entire solution was successfully installed and commissioned as per the timeline that was planned with the customer.

One year later and the feedback from the customer has been positive. Sullair has worked closely with them to make sure they were happy with the install. Both DSP160 VSD machines are operating well, guaranteeing constant air pressure, air flow and superior air quality to the customer.

Compressed air systems are used on medication production lines involving actuating valves, and cylinders, as well for the packaging of the product. Once the raw ingredients of a medication have been turned into a tablet or pill, that unit enters the production line to be properly packaged. The compressor must provide stable air pressure and flow at all times, to maintain consistency along the production line – even a small hiccup can cause a halt and significant loss on production.

Sullair’s oil free experts are often asked why oil free air matters and they work hard to educate their customers around the importance of a clean, dry, high quality oil free supply of compressed air. Oil free status is particularly important with a client like this as all ingestible products must be produced to the highest standards for human consumption. Oil contamination can also impact other aspects of the production cycle, risking interruptions to production and even product recalls. Oil contamination of packaging for example can impact the sealing performance of the product packaging. If the hygienic seal of the product is compromised, the internal product may deteriorate which in turn can impact on the expiry date and the efficacy of the product used by the consumer at time of ingestion.

As well as being oil free, air used in medication production lines should also be extremely dry. If the air is not dry to specifications, the presence of tiny traces of moisture can promote bacterial growth, causing contamination of the product. This could make it unsafe for human consumption, or even result in a product recall which can be costly and arduous for the business, the brand and the consumer.  

Interested in finding out more about Sullair’s oil free products?

Contact Sullair today here or by calling 1300 266 773.

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