Blister packaging is a popular form of packaging used in the pharmaceutical, medical device, and consumer goods industries. It consists of a cavity or pocket made from a formable web of plastic or aluminum, which securely holds the product (such as tablets, capsules, or small devices) and is sealed with a lidding material.
Ensuring the integrity of blister packages is of utmost importance, especially for products that are sensitive to moisture, air, or contaminants. A leak in the blister package can compromise the quality, efficacy, and shelf life of the enclosed product, leading to potential safety risks for consumers and financial losses for manufacturers.
Leak testing is a critical quality control process that assesses the seal integrity of blister packages to identify potential leaks or weak seals. By performing leak testing, manufacturers can identify defective packages and take corrective action before products reach the market.
OptiPac Technology for Blister Package Leak Detection
The OptiPac One-Touch Tool-less system is designed for non-destructive Container Closure Integrity Testing (CCIT) of blister packages. It is a deterministic technique that utilizes volumetric imaging in vacuum together with topographic imaging to identify leaks and where they are located. The OptiPac employs controlled inputs and measured outputs using concepts similar to those used in a vacuum-based dye ingress test, but without the inconvenience and reliability difficulties of the dye ingress approach. By utilizing One-Touch Technology, OptiPac provides a quick test cycle without the need for complicated parameter modifications or changeovers, as seen with other non-destructive blister package inspection systems.
OptiPac Blister Package Inspection System which makes use of volumetric imaging technology provides high levels of sensitivity and reliability. The volumetric imaging method uses many imaging techniques with a complex deep algorithm. The test operator selects a recipe for the blister package using the HMI touch screen, then arranges it in any direction on the test plate. Vacuum is drawn to a predetermined vacuum as soon as he presses the start button. Under vacuum, the blisters enlarge, and any air leaks cause the air to be forced out of the blister. If the blister has a leak, air enters the chamber and collapses the blister cavity. To identify which blister cavities are defective, volumetric images and measurements can be acquired during the test technique. Additionally, the system shows the quantitative measurement for each product tested along with a clear pass/fail result.
OptiPac’s insightful technology offers a suite of advanced functions:
- Auto configuration for easy recipe setup and validation of new blister formats.
- Auto orientation of blister packs (test blister packs in any position –no specific orientation).
- Auto calibration is an integrated one-touch function.
- Advanced batch reporting with audit trail including image of blister pack and defect results.
- Non-destructive technology - Pass/Fail results backed by quantitative test data.
- No changeover to test different blister formats.
- Pre-loaded recipe library with easy recipe setup and validation of new blister formats.
- Completely tool-less.
- Identifies defective cavity.
Proper leak testing can improve production efficiency and reduce waste by identifying and resolving issues in the packaging process promptly. It enhances overall product quality and increases consumer confidence, which are essential factors for maintaining a competitive edge in the market.
As technology advances, we can expect further developments in leak testing methods, leading to even more accurate, efficient, and cost-effective solutions. Manufacturers should stay updated on these advancements and continuously improve their testing procedures to stay at the forefront of quality assurance.