Modeling powder encapsulation in dosator-based machines: I. Theory

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Automatic encapsulation machines have two dosing principles: dosing disc and dosator. Dosator-based machines compress the powder to plugs that are transferred into capsules. The encapsulation process in dosator-based capsule machines was modeled in this work. A model was proposed to predict the weight and length of produced plugs. According to the model, the plug weight is a function of piston dimensions, powder-bed height, bulk powder density and precompression densification inside dosator while plug length is a function of piston height, set piston displacement, spring stiffness and powder compressibility. Powder densification within the dosator can be achieved by precompression, compression or both. Precompression densification depends on the powder to piston height ratio while compression densification depends on piston displacement against powder. This article provides the theoretical basis of the encapsulation model, including applications and limitations. The model will be applied to experimental data separately.

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