Silicon dioxide, also known as silica, is an excipient. It is multifunctional and will make the manufacturing process easier. Silicon dioxide is an inert ingredient. This means it won’t react with the other ingredients you are using or substances in the body. It makes both manufacturing and digestion easier. It has a high melting point and a higher boiling point and it is insoluble in water. There are natural grades and synthetic grades but each have an identical chemical make-up. It’s often used because it increases flowability and stops caking on tooling.
Silicon dioxide absorbs moisture from its surroundings. Cosmetic and food manufacturers often use it for this reason. These applications are also desired by pharmaceutical companies. The different benefits work together to create an easier and smoother manufacturing process.
Silicon dioxide has a high porosity which allows it to absorb up to 300g of fluid per 100g of silica. This means that liquid ingredients can turn into free flowing powders with ease. It acts as a glidant, a substance used in a formula to improve its flow qualities. It ensures that the product flows through machinery and doesn’t stick to the equipment. Using silica will also increase the stability of moisture sensitive API’s. An API is an “active pharmaceutical ingredient.” This ability will reduce trace quantities of moisture which can cause machinery degradation. It has a unique moisture absorption. This encourages quick tableting due to it's resistance to capping and sticking.
Silicon dioxide is an interesting element that is abundant on this earth. It everywhere on earth and makes up 60% of the Earth’s crust and 93% of known rocks. It is also known as quartz. It is found in our body tissues, plants and in our food. It is a necessity for healthy bones, skin, hair, teeth and nails. Silicon dioxide deficiency can result in poor bone formation, unhealthy skin and teeth.
It is important to handle Silicon dioxide correctly. This will increase the products shelf life and keep people safe. It can irritate eyes and skin if they are exposed to it. Avoid inhalation and wear a mack whilst handling it. If the product is handled properly, it will stay in excellent condition until it’s ready for use.
Silicon dioxide is a multifunctional, popular excipient. It is effective and makes the manufacturing process more efficient.