Gamlen Instruments company overview


We provide high performance instruments, support and training to help scientists create innovative products.

To create new and better products you need to carefully study and understand the relationship between drug properties, formulation and manufacturing process under properly controlled laboratory conditions.

Technical breakthrough uses ‘force control’ instead of ‘thickness control’ with minimal loss of materials

Until recently small scale tablet manufacture using ‘controlled compaction force’ had not been possible because of technical limitations based on thickness control and large scale production.

New breakthroughs by Gamlen Instruments mean scientists now have the ability to manufacture small batches of tablets and conduct advanced research and development using portable benchtop instruments.


Our precision instruments fall into 3 areas:

1. Custom small-batch tablet manufacturing – Gamlen M series

This is a portable benchtop system for the laboratory or manufacturing facility. Designed to work straight out of the box – simply plug in and go – easy to operate and no training required. Read more about the Gamlen M series

2. Entry level research and development – Gamlen R series

This is an upgradeable benchtop computer controlled powder compaction analyser, designed to grow with the needs of scientists working in academia and industry. The Gamlen R series removes the guess work from formulation and preformulation studies – enabling users to fully understand compaction. Read more about the Gamlen R series

3. Advanced research and development – Gamlen D series

This is the ultimate system for industry and academic professionals looking for advanced tableting research with affordable in-die dynamic compaction analysis.
Users can generate tablet tensile fracture stress, compactibility, compressibility and tabletability plots (Kawakita and Heckel) with 1µm accuracy. Read more about the Gamlen D series

Key features include:

  • Dwell time control: 100 ms – 60 s in 10 ms increments
  • Tablet detachment and ejection with full profiles
  • Benchtop compaction analysis including in-die and out-of-die measurements with dwell time control

Our services


Our support services include: small scale tablet manufacturing, compaction analysis, laboratory rental and expert tableting courses.

Small scale tablet manufacturing
We can make tablets to a size of 2-15 mm in diameter to a capacity of 2-400 mg. Round tablets only

Compaction analysis
A unique service providing compaction analysis of your formulation using either Heckel or Kawakita plots.

Laboratory rental
Our modern technical services laboratory is equipped for either your R&D work, training requirements or small scale tablet manufacturing.

Tableting courses
We offer a wide range of tableting training courses held either in our London office or at your office. These are valuable for new and experienced staff looking for a refresher on the principles of tablet preformulation and formulation development.

Product development team


Dr Michael Gamlen, MD and founding director

Michael has over 40 years of experience studying tablets. He spent a year at Beechams Pharmaceuticals working on a completely novel technique to instrument a rotary tablet press. He then joined Wellcome Foundation, where for 14 years he was responsible for development of all tablet formulations including hundreds of clinical trial formulations as well as licensed products (of which many are still on the market).

Michael graduated with first class honours in pharmacy (specialising in pharmaceutical engineering) of Sunderland University and has a PhD from Nottingham University. At Nottingham he trained with Professor JM Newton, one of the UK’s leading tableting researchers and the first person to use tensile fracture stress measurements to evaluate tablets.

Breaking new ground with the Gamlen series

The Gamlen series uses an innovative force control method that has revolutionised the tablet manufacturing process.

Until recently small scale tablet manufacture using ‘controlled compaction force’ had not been possible because of technical limitations based on thickness control and large scale production.

Now, scientists have the ability to manufacture small batches of tablets and conduct advanced research and development using portable benchtop instruments. Users include GSK, Pfizer, Reckitt Benckisser, Imperial College London, and MIT.

Dr Serena Schiano, R&D manager

Serena’s research background is in material characterisation and compaction; specifically using Drucker-Prager Cap plasticity models (DPC) for the analysis of compaction of pharmaceutical powders.

Having studied physical chemistry and organic chemistry at the University of Naples Federico II, Serena completed her PhD and Post-doc in Chemical and Process Engineering at the University of Surrey.

A researcher in the IPROCOM network, a multidisciplinary and inter-sectoral consortium whose goal is to address scientific and technology challenges in the manufacture of particulate products, Serena has presented at a number of international conferences and was awarded first prize for her presentation at the Compaction Simulation Forum
in Copenhagen (2015).

Serena drives forward product development at Gamlen Instruments through scientific discovery.

Why the DPC model is a powerful tool for predicting blend behaviour and improving tablet quality

Tableting is defined as the process of forming a solid compact from loose powder or granules using uniaxial compression. Insufficient tensile strength is one of the main issues during the compaction of granules/blends. However, other issues can occur such as capping and delamination of the tablets during the ejection step.

Although the compression behaviour of powder can be characterised with methods like the Heckel analysis, these methods are not able to describe powder behaviour during decompression and ejection. For this reason, Finite element models (FEM) have become popular due to their ability to describe powder deformation behaviour in the tableting process.

FEM models need experimental calibration data describing the elastic-plastic properties of the materials. For determination of elastic-plastic properties, the most widely used model is the Drucker-Prager-Cap (DPC) model (Drucker and Prager, 1952).

The DPC method describes the densification, hardening and inter-particle friction during the entire compaction process. This makes it a powerful tool for predicting blend behaviour and improving tablet quality.

Henry Kafeman, data analysis/visualisation, product development
and software engineering

Henry has over 30 years of experience working in many engineering disciplines and has proved to be an invaluable asset. He set up his independent engineering consultancy HDK Solutions Ltd in 2008.

His ability to combine creative thinking with engineering excellence has resulted in a significant contribution to product development. His innovations include the unique patented rotating die for the Gamlen D series, which measures detachment force.

Henry earned his MA in engineering at Queens’ College, University of Cambridge.
His experience includes software engineering (support and troubleshooting as well as development), data analysis and visualisation. electronics/PCB design and simulation, embedded systems, databases, wireless communication, mechanical engineering and pneumatics.

Other Gamlen projects include:

  • Analysing and visualising Gamlen series data using Microsoft SQL Server (relational database), MathWorks Matlab, Microsoft Access and Microsoft Excel.
  • Measures of manufacturability (tabletability, compressibility and compactability), strain recovery and characterisation of materials.
  • Streamlining software user interface for the Gamlen series and Tablet Tensile Analyser (TTA).
  • Tablet tensile analyser to minimise operator input (and hence potential errors) and to guide operation of the instruments based on the experimental protocol selected.
  • Environmental control for the Gamlen series operation.
  • An upgraded version of the GamPette powder pipette.

Download company brochure

Your partner in creating better tablets

Gamlen Instruments is a trading name of Gamlen Tableting Limited

Gamlen Tableting Limited
Biocity Nottingham
Pennyfoot Street
Nottingham NG1 1GF
United Kingdom

Telephone: +44 115 912 4271

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