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Packaging Equipment Manufacturer Finds Better Way to Bust Dust

June 6, 2007

In the case of neutraceutical capsule-filling machines, it is critical to recover the product at the source. Nilfisk-Advance America’s CFM 3507W was incorporated into Bosch’s GKF 2500 to increase dust-collection efficiency while maintaining a rapid capsule-filling pace.

With more than 3000 processing and packaging machines in operation worldwide, Bosch Packaging Technology (Minneapolis) is a leader in the pharmaceutical, nutraceutical, and related industries. Some of its machines have been in almost continuous operation for more than 30 years.
Bill Kohl, product manager for capsule-filling and capsule check-weighing equipment at Bosch Packaging Technology, said that nutraceutical products by nature are often dustier than pharmaceutical products. In the case of nutraceutical capsule-filling equipment, it is particularly critical that the product be recovered at the source or it can create a dust problem in the work area. “Besides the hygiene issue, our pharmaceutical and nutraceutical customers need to collect all excess product for accountability purposes,” explained Kohl. “This means that the dust-collecting equipment we integrate into our machines has to be the best and capable of operating efficiently around the clock when necessary.”
A few years ago, the vacuum cleaner system that was integrated into Bosch’s GKF 2500 high-speed capsule-filling machine was not operating up to the company’s high performance standards. It took only a few customer comments to send Kohl and his team on a search for a better vacuum.
Finding the Right Dust-Collection System
Kohl’s team began looking for a vacuum system that would enable the GKF 2500 machine to increase its dust-collection efficiency while still maintaining a rapid capsule-filling pace of 2500 capsules/min, or 150,000 capsules/hr.
“At the Interphex show that year, we literally walked up and down every aisle looking for dust collectors that would work with the GKF 2500,” Kohl remarked. “We identified half a dozen suppliers, then began narrowing them down after the show. When all was said and done, we went with Nilfisk-Advance America because the company was more responsive and had a better product. They consistently came through for us during the selection process.”
Nilfisk offers a wide range of machines, including heavy-duty units for industrial-strength applications, high-purity cleanroom-packaged models, specialty machines that collect and compress packaging scraps, and even a disposable HEPA-filtered container for the safe collection and disposal of potent compounds. The Bosch team chose the company’s CFM 3507W, a large-capacity vacuum cleaner that is designed for continuous operation in fixed installations, “After dealing with Nilfisk-Advance America during the selection process,” Kohl stated, “there was no doubt in my mind that they know vacuum cleaner technology.”

Nilfisk-Advance America has upgraded its CFM 07 line of industrial vacuums, used by Bosch, with the 08 series. These vacuums are accessible, adaptable, transportable, and comfortable to operate.

High-Performance Filtration Makes a Difference
The CFM 3507W vacuum cleaner’s filtration system makes the machine suitable for continuous-duty applications that require it to be integrated into a process or into a piece of equipment such as Bosch’s GKF 2500 capsule-filling machine. The vacuum’s filtration system features oversized main filters that resist premature clogging and help maintain maximum air power. Other features enable long, uninterrupted periods of operation with minimal maintenance.
“It’s especially important that the vacuum we use in the GKF 2500 have an exceptional filtration system that will retain all of the collected powders,” said Kohl. “Our customers need to know that the machine will not exhaust these powders back into the air.”
Once collected, powders travel through the vacuum’s multistage filtration system, which has been proven to retain particulates down to 0.3 µm. The system includes a series of graduated filters that trap increasingly smaller particles as they move through the vacuum. It also has a HEPA exhaust filter for added security. This filtration system ensures that particles are retained within the vacuum rather than exhausted into the ambient air.
Boosting Productivity and Customer Satisfaction
“What all of this boils down to for us is customer satisfaction,” Kohl observed. “Integrating the Nilfisk-Advance America vacuum into our GKF 2500 has translated into a more-efficient capsule-filling process for our customers, helping them to increase productivity and virtually guaranteeing accurate accountability. In fact, we’ve been using the CFM 3507W for about three to four years now, and we haven’t had one customer complaint.”
Nilfisk-Advance America, Malvern, PA 610-647-6420 www.pa.nilfisk-advance.com.