Novel Laser Coding Technology for Pharmaceutical Glass Containers
Glass syringes can now be individually coded / Safe process free of micro-cracks / Reliable Track & Trace
Closeup of new coding.
A completely new innovative laser-coding system enables glass
containers for parenteral use to be clearly coded at the glass
syringe manufacturer and tracked from production to end
customer. This innovation can help pharmaceutical companies to
develop a reliable Track & Trace system and further reduce the
risk of mix-up of syringes and batches. At the same time, this
laser-coding technology is an effective means to counter drug
The benefit: patient safety for pharmaceutical and diagnostic
products is guaranteed. The laser-coded containers meet the
demands of clean room standards and no additional chemicals or
materials are required for coding. Moreover, the laser-coding
system can easily be integrated into existing filling systems,
providing a stable, highly reproducible and safe process.
The laser-coding process was developed and tested under
production conditions by a team of experts from the
pharmaceutical industry, glass tubing production and
pharmaceutical packaging supplier for software and vision
inspection. Involved were the companies Roche Diagnostics
GmbH, SCHOTT forma vitrum AG, SCHOTT-Rohrglas GmbH,
Seidenader Vision GmbH and Vesdo AG. The proof of concept for
large-scale production is now available and the process is
therefore ready for implementation.
Various tests have proven that the laser coding causes no microcracks
and has no effect on the mechanical stability of the glass.
The process can safely code each container with an individual 2D
data matrix code, making it 100% readable. To guarantee 100%
readability of the code on the curved glass surface of the syringe,
the team has developed dedicated algorithms and test methods.
The laser-coding concept also offers a documentation tool that can
provide a trail for each container including information such as:
place of production, fill date, expiration date or day of use. The
code is tiny – only 2 by 2mm. The 2D data matrix code which is
marked on to the container is barely visible to the human eye but
allows for the indexing of a database record which contains data
related to the individual item, such as drug specification, dosage,
production line, batch. This record can have more data added
during the lifecycle of the product.
The process can be used for syringes as well as for vials,
cartridges and ampoules.