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Characterization of Granules - the Flow Properties of Granules

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Department: Pharmaceutical & Chemical Engineering.

Major: Pharmaceutical & Chemical Engineering.

Course Name : Pharmaceutical Technology- Solid forms Lab.

Course ID: PCE374.

Section Number: 1

Instructor:  MunibSaket.

                    Eng. ShaimaQanies.


Group B

Student name: RahadaAltal.                                

Student ID : 20151301059

Experiment Number 1: Characterization of Granules .

Day/Date : Tuesday/18-7-2017 .


- This experiment aims to practice the tests that characterize the granules, like flow rate, angle of repose, moisture content and the compressibility index. Also it aims to be familiar with the apparatuses that were used to determine the flow properties. At the end of the experiment and as a result, we will be able to determine the types of the flow of the granules used. This experiment is divided into three parts, in each part we will determine a specific flow property of a lactose granules. In the first part we were able to determine the angle of repose and the flow rate of lactose granules using an apparatus called “free standing cone and fixed funnel”. In the second part we determined the compressibility index by measuring the tapped density and the bulk density of lactose granules, and to do that we used an apparatuses called “Copley tapped density tester”. And finally, at the last part we were able to determine the parameters need to calculate the moisture content using an apparatus called “Metteler Toledo moisture analyzer”. The application of this experiment in the field of study is in the manufacture of many different products across diverse industries, including food, pharmaceutical, consumer products and specialty chemicals, cause the granules are essential in these products. The particle characteristics of these materials can have a direct influence on the process ability and hence the quality and performance of the resulting product. 


- The purpose of this experiment is to determine the flow properties of granules and to be familiar with the apparatuses that we were used to determined such properties. The main flow properties we will determine is the flow rate, the angle of repose, the compressibility factor and the moisture content. Granules are the multiparticle entities in which primary powder particles are made to adhere to form larger particle. To determine these properties, we used special apparatuses. To determine the flow rate and the angle of repose we used the fixed funnel and free standing cone apparatus, after we weighed 100g of lactose granules and with the use of stopwatch, we measured the flow rate, after that we measured the height and the diameters of the cone formed, and so we were able to measure the angle of repose. In the next step, and in order to determine the compressibility index, we used the Copley tapped density tester, we were able to measure this term by measuring the tapped density and the bulk density parameters and after weighed 50g of lactose granules. The last property  we determined  is the moisture content by the use of Metteler Toledo moisture analyzer, after we weighed 1g of lactose and another trial using 1g of starch. The importance of this experiment in pharmacy is that the effective powder characterization can lead to better powder understanding and control, which is crucial in the pharma industry where the majority of APIs are delivered as powders.    



1)Spatula.      2)Beaker.       3)Cylinder.      4)Funnel.    


1)Flow rate apparatus.                    

 2)Copley Tapped density tester.                3)Metter Toledo moisture analyzer.

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Figure 1: Copley Tapped density tester.               Figure 2:Metteler Toledo moisture                                                                                                     analyzer.


1) Lactose.                        2)Starch.

3.4-Experimental procedure:

*This experiment consists of three parts as follow:

-The first part aims to determine the flow rate of lactose powder and the angle of repose that has been formed when a cone of the powder has been formed, to do that we use a flow rate apparatus. Firstly we weighed (100 g) of lactose powder (make sure that the apparatus was assembled in the right way). Then we fill the funnel with the lactose powder (making sure that you close the exit hole of the funnel, so no powder can get out before turn the stopwatch on.). At the same time we opened the exit hole of the funnel, we turned the stopwatch on. After all the powder has been escaped from the funnel we turned the stopwatch off and recorded the time taken. For the cone that has been formed on the graph paper, we measure two diameters of the base of that cone and also we measured the height using a ruler and then we recorded the results. Then, we repeated the procedure two times , to get more accurate results.

-The second part aims measure the bulk density and the tapped density. We started by weighing (50 g) of lactose powder, then we fill it in the cylinder that is attached to the Copley tapped density tester using a funnel. After that we tapped the cylinder only two times to make sure that the surface of the powder is even so we can take the volume accurately (Note: in our case, the surface remained uneven, so we took the average between the maximum and the minimum reading.). After recorded the bulk volume, we turned the apparatus on, and so the tapping process went on. Then after the apparatus stopped tapping, we recorded the volume(Note: in our case, also we took the average tapped volume, cause the surface was uneven after tapping).

-In the last part, we used Metteler Toledo moisture analyzer to determine the moisture content of two lactose samples and one starch sample. We started by weighing (1g) of lactose powder (Note: this apparatus contains internal balance, so we used it to weighed  the powder samples), the we closed the apparatus and leave it until the stopwatch on the apparatus has been stopped and then we recorded the moisture content that appeared on the screen.

4-Results and Observations:


*Table 1 : Flow rate determination of lactose granules: Amount tested vs. flow time vs. flow rate :



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