Why Pure Water Is Crucial in Pharmaceutical Manufacturing: Info About Industrial Water Treatment Systems in Cincinnati, OH

February 26, 2018

Pure water is critical for the safe and successful manufacturing of pharmaceuticals. Many global pharmacopeias require manufacturers to start with drinking water and then purify it even further to much stricter standards of purity.

Fortunately, today’s technology used for water purification is extremely efficient and rarely has problems meeting these strict standards for pharmaceuticals. Industrial water treatment systems in Cincinnati, OH often include pretreatment, followed by purification, which can include processes such as deionization, distillation, reverse osmosis, ozone and ultraviolet sterilization.

Testing for pharma manufacturing

The compendial the pharmaceutical manufacturing industry requires for water include total organic carbon testing (TOC), bioburden (such as testing for microbial content), conductivity and endotoxin.

Many manufacturers also use online process analytical technology (PAT) to test TOC and conductivity to get more control out of the process. For example, many companies employ the strategy of having at least one online instrument at the very end of a high-purity water loop as a means of control and analysis. Other companies implement one at the front end of the loop and occasionally take samples (to be tested in the laboratory) in the middle of the loop just to check and make sure everything is going according to plans and specifications.

One of the latest trends in the world of water purification for the purposes of pharmaceutical manufacturing is real-time release of process water, using PAT. In this process, the manufacturer must do method validation, instrument qualification and process validation. The process makes for better cost efficiency without the need to compromise the integrity of the water and the traceability of release testing.

However, pharmaceutical companies are still widely using TOC testing in laboratory settings for the release of process water. Online rapid microbial testing is also an option, but isn’t used as much due to the need for discrete sampling to verify results.

Water shortages are an issue

The need for purified water is made even greater due to water shortages on a global scale. According to studies by the World Health Organization, about half of the world’s population will live in water-stressed areas by the year 2025. Global water demand could reach 40 percent more than the accessible supply of reliably clean water by 2030. This means it will get harder and harder to find access to clean, pure water for pharmaceuticals as well as for drinking.

Therefore, the pharmaceutical industry stands to benefit a great deal from research that will make water purification more efficient than ever. The cost of water is going to go up as available water sources go down.

Manufacturers will, for example, need to consider how to reuse water being sent to the drain. They might take water draining from a clean-in-place system and then re-treat it for use in other systems in the building.

For more information about how water purification intersects with the pharmaceutical manufacturing industry, we encourage you to reach out to our team today and we’ll happily answer your questions about industrial water treatment systems in Cincinnati, OH.

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