What is a Gelatin Capsule?

Gelatin capsules, informally called gel caps or softgel capsules, are composed of gelatin manufactured from the collagen of animal skin and bone.

There is another type of capsule known as Vegetable capsules. They are made up of cellulose. The main ingredient of vegetarian capsules is hydroxypropyl methyl cellulose (HPMC). However, in the current market, gelatin capsules are more universally used than vegetarian capsules because the cost of production is lower.

Types of Gelatin Capsules:

  • Hard shell Capsules: They contain dry, powdered ingredients or miniature pellets. These are made in two halves: a smaller-diameter “body” that is filled and then sealed using a larger-diameter “cap”.
  • Soft shell Capsules: They contain oils or active ingredients that are dissolved or suspended in oil.

Finished product Quality Control tests for Capsules:

Finished capsules are subjected to a number of tests in accordance with compendial standards and regulatory requirements for unit dose capsule products. These batteries of tests help identify whether the batch is acceptable for marketing or its intended usage

Physical Integrity of Gelatin Capsules:

Leaking gelatin capsules destroys consumer confidence in the product and the manufacturer. To prevent defective capsules from reaching the market, a manufacturer must develop tests to identify them. One approach is to use a Gelatin capsule hardness tester that applies a compressive force to gelatin capsules to confirm they have sufficient wall strength to withstand external forces during manufacturing, storage, packaging, transport and finally when used by a consumer.

What should the hardness be of a Gelatin capsule?

In general, a suitable weight ratio is that dry plasticizer: dry gelatin = 0.4 – 0.6: 1.0, and the ratio of water to dry gelatin is 1:1. The capsule shell is the hardest when the weight ratio between the plasticizer and gelatin is 0.3:1.0, and the shell is soft if 1.8:1.

What is a Gelatin Capsule Hardness Tester?

Gelatin Capsule Hardness tester is a device that indicates the hardness of a capsule by measuring the effect on its surface of a localized penetration by a standardized flat shaped indenter made of hard steel.  Bareiss has made an exclusive solution to test the hardness of a capsule called a Gelomat. 

Gelatin Capsule Hardness Testers

Gelatin Capsule Hardness Testers

Application of Gelomat and its importance:

Gelomat is a plug and play hardness tester and non-destructive method developed for the determination of the hardness and resistance on gelatin, gelatin capsules, play dough, paintballs, agars etc.

The unique design and digital measuring systems ensure that a remarkably high measuring precision and most reliable measurement is obtained. An automatic measurement for hardness test on gelatin capsules is required to obtain optimum accuracy and repeatability.

The user can choose a measuring head from either 0 – 2 N or 0 – 20 N and has an option to attach an Automatic positioning device called Rotofix or a manually operated sample fixture known as

Centrofix. With the help of our software, users can analyze the results, store data, see histograms, create batch folders, etc.

Integration with an Automated optical inspection system:

Based on the client’s requirements, Bareiss also designs and develops customized automated optical inspection systems that could be integrated with a Gelomat hardness tester or as a stand alone. This system will allow the quality specialists to check the size and defects of the finished product, achieving close to 100% perfection in quality for each batch that is manufactured.  This efficient technology will maximize your business values and at the same time embrace cost optimization for your company.