How do I decide which laboratory extruder and spheronizer I need?

We are often asked for advice by researchers and teachers who want to acquire laboratory equipment for the development of both formulations and processes using the techniques of Extrusion and Spheronization in the laboratory.  All users are individual and have different requirements and there is not a single system that will fit all needs.

Find out what you need to consider.


There are three key things to consider:

    • The batch size you want to work with. This is fundamental and is generally the first thing you need to decide.
    • Do you need the ability to work with extrudate or pellets of different density? The effect of density on a formulation can affect the properties of your final product.   If your formulation is new, then the ability to look at the effect of product density is recommended.
    • If your development will lead to manufacture, then consider the extruder type you want to use for production now. This can have significant long-range, practical and financial consequences.

Caleva Multi Lab (CML)

A granulator, extruder and spheronizer on a single Proof of Concept base unit.  Batch size from about 5 g to 50g (wet weight) - ideal for formulation development.  Significant cost saving over buying 3 separate machines. Incredibly fast turnaround between batches & product - 15 minutes - see the study and video here. Optional bowls and blades for high viscosity mixing.  Vary the density of your final product with specially designed extrusion dies.  A real GLP/GMP development tool.

Caleva Multi Bowl Spheronizer

Screen Extruder 20 & Multi Bowl Spheronizer.  Range of bowl size options on the same base.  Batch size from 50 g to 1500 g.  Low pressure screen extrusion.  Rapid scale up to cost effective production.  Purchase only what you need now – upgrade later as needed.  Extruder screen hole depths can be 1 or 2 mm to increase extrudate density.  No other currently available bench top system will offer you this wide range of batch sizes.

The Variable Density Kit

Caleva Variable Density Screw Extruder & Multi Bowl Spheronizer with a range of bowl size options on the same base.  Experiment with different densities in your extrudate or pellet results.   Increase the chance of development success by widening your options.  Batch sizes from 150 grams to 1.5 kg.  Screw extruder system that can be scaled up the Caleva Variable Density Twin Screw Extruder for production.


Common to all Caleva laboratory equipment are the following advantages:

  • Caleva experience and support for your project. Talk to the experts!
  • Try your products in our laboratory on different types of equipment before making a decision.
  • All Spheronizer bowl sizes can be supplied with cross hatch and radial discs appropriate for the pellet size being used.

If you have additional questions or want to try the kits then please make contact with us directly by phone (+44 1258 471122) or contact one of the Caleva team.


By Andrea Newton
22 Sep 2020 in CML, VDE

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