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Interview with Dr.Ing. Adrian Fulga of APTM SA

What is APTM?
APTM SA is a leading supplier of micronizers, ultra-fine prowder equipment and total process containment technologies. We currently deliver grinding, mixing and handling equipment and assist customers in the processing industries, particularly in the chemical and pharmaceutical sectors, with the design, development, construction and optimization of individual production processes.
APTM offers its customers a wide range of services in all areas of technological development and implementation, project management and process consulting and validation. We adapt flexibly to the starting point of each customer – from development of individual process steps to comprehensive optimization and validation of entire powder manufacturing processes.
The main offices and laboratories are located in Lugano-Stabio, Switzerland. In addition, the company runs a branch (APTM Srl) in Italy.
APTM was formed by the acquisition and restructuring of the former Arescom SA to build up its strength in the field of micronization engineering for the chemical and pharmaceutical industries. For more information see company's presentation.

Does APTM work with powders?
APTM has various technology groups, which operate all kinds of powder production steps. One of these groups is the solids processing group. This handles all solids processing steps such as drying, crystallization, sieving, sifting, milling, micronization, dedusting and solids handling. The activities of the group cover process development, optimization of existing production plants and sample provision (of new and modified products).

Who is Adrian Fulga?
I am the technical director of APTM, member of the solids processing group and head of R&D and engineering department. Our team has 5 members.
With the help of our experimental equipment we can undertake all kinds of research and investigations. In addition, we have a complete infrastructure for solids and powder handling. To design processes involving solids it is necessary to carry out many experimental works. This applies to all kinds of products, whether chemicals, pharmaceuticals, cosmetics or polymers.

How is APTM equipped for R&D works?
We have been using our 4" and 8" SuperJet and StarJet micronisers for many years now.
They are installed in a special, GMP isolator for the micronization of drug substances. These materials are very valuable and it is important to reach the desired particle size as fast as possible. The processing isolator is connected to a special analysing glovebox that holds all measuring equipment to obtain the result of the milling without any delay. Thus we can react and adjust the micronising parameters very quickly.
Both isolators has been designed to cleanroom requirements. With this system, we achieve our aim of running the microniser so that it meets the specification all the time. No product is lost because the particle size misses the specification. We control and document the micronizing process continually. That is very important in terms of GMP.

Using the total process containment technology, we save a lot of time and money because the correct milling parameters are found very quickly. This is extremely important because in our case the product very often varies. The yield of the micronizer was increased. We no longer have the problem of products missing the specification. These pharmaceutical products are very valuable so each gram saved is a real gain. In short, we can perform much better in a sector where high quality is crucial.

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