Pharmaceutical industry

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Air treatment for the pharmaceutical industry

The pharmaceutical sector is among the most highly regulated industries. For good reason. The products manufactured in pharmaceutical plants can ease suffering and save lives. To do so, however, their production must meet stringent quality standards. And that begins with very clean compressed air. Pneumatech offers a complete range of solutions to achieve the compressed air quality standards pharmaceutical companies must meet.

Pharma with wave

The use of compressed air in the pharmaceutical industry

Compressed air plays a crucial role in virtually every phase of the production of pharmaceuticals. Just consider the laboratories in which they are developed, the extruders and bottling plants, tablet presses and packaging machines. Compressed air really can be found everywhere in the production process.

In many applications, such as mixing and granulation, drying, pressing, coating and packaging, this compressed air comes into direct contact with the pharmaceuticals. When that happens, the air has to meet certain quality standards, or you risk contaminating your pharmaceuticals.

The importance of quality air in pharmaceutical production

All untreated compressed air contains contaminants, which can be divided into 3 categories: moisture, particles, and traces of oil. It would be disastrous for this untreated air to get in direct contact with pharmaceutical products.

That is why the treatment of the air is a top priority – not only to protect your products but also your equipment.

Fortunately, different technologies are available to ensure that the air meets the stringent air quality requirements of the pharmaceutical industry:

  • Particles: Filters
  • Water/moisture: After coolers, dryers, water separator, drains, filters
  • Oil: Filters & carbon towers or using an oil-free, Class 0 compressor

The compressed air quality standard

ISO 8573-1:2010 is the international standard that categorizes compressed air quality. Pharmaceutical processes typically require class 1.2.1 or 1.3.1.

Purity class

Solid particles


Total oil

Number of particles per m3

Pressure dewpoint


0.1 < d ≤ 0.5 μm**

0.5 < d ≤ 1.0 μm**

1.0 < d ≤ 5.0 μm**





As specified by the equipment user or supplier and more stringent than Class 1.


≤ 20000

≤ 400

≤ 10

≤ -70

≤ -94

≤ 0.01


≤ 400000

≤ 6000

≤ 100

≤ -40

≤ -40

≤ 0.1



≤ 90000

≤ 1000

≤ -20

≤ -4

≤ 1




≤ 10000

≤ 3

≤ 37.4

≤ 5




≤ 100000

≤ 7

≤ 44.6



≤ 5 mg/m3

≤ 10

≤ 50


Germ-free/sterile air: other compressed air quality standards pharmaceutical must meet

ISO 8573-1 does not define values for germs/micro-organisms. However, germ-free compressed air is extremely important for pharmaceutical manufacturing processes. That's because germs and micro-organisms can compromise products and endanger the health of the consumer. It is therefore important to remove them from compressed air using specialized technologies such as sterile filters.

The dryer that meets pharmaceutical production needs

PB 760-7400 HE

The PB 760-7400 HE offers a low pressure dew point (PDP) of -40°C/-40°F as standard (and -70°C/-94°F as an option). It comes in 3 high-efficiency models: a blower purge version and two zero purge variants.

Meeting the compressed air quality standards pharmaceutical companies must comply with requires the right dryer. The Pneumatech PB is that adsorption dryer:

  • Quality air: Get high-purity compressed air with a stable pressure dew point to achieve ISO 8573-1:2010 Class 1, 2 & 3 at 100% load conditions.
  • Lower costs: Thanks to its best-in-class efficiency, the PB range keeps your energy costs as low as possible.
  • Superior reliability: No pharmaceutical company can afford production downtime. Thanks to the PB’s quality components and durable design, you enjoy industry-leading reliability.
  • Advanced control and monitoring: Our advanced PurelogicTM Touch is included as standard to allow you to optimize efficiency and reliability.

A wide range of filters

Ultimate filters group picture
Pneumatech has a full range of filters to make sure your compressed air meets all particle, oil and moisture content quality requirements. Our portfolio includes oil coalescing, particulate and oil vapor filters, as well breathing air, silicone-free, sterile and process filtration.

Meet all your air treatment needs from a single source

As the leader in compressed air quality, Pneumatech offers a complete range of air treatment equipment. This includes all types of dryers, filters, drains and (oil-)water separators. That means you can get top-quality, fully compatible air solutions from one single source. 

Expert advice and support

Need help with the compressed air quality standards pharmaceutical companies like yours must meet? Contact us today. Our experts are ready to provide you with the right information, support, and solutions.

Compressed Air Dryers

If you've worked with an air compressor, you've likely noticed the air is saturated with moisture. This is because water, in contrast to air, is incompressible. The amount of moisture per volume unit increases when air is compressed, creating condensation. Our compressed air dryers are vital for removing this moisture, which can cause corrosion, quality issues, and microorganisms in your air system.