Integrity Testing
Processing Steps


Integrity testing is a fundamental requirement of critical process filtration applications in the beverage industry. By testing the membrane integrity, you guarantee the functionality of your membrane filter assemblies, and the consistent quality of your product.

When to Perform Integrity Testing

For beverage applications, we recommend that you perform filter integrity testing during the final membrane filtration step, and before and after use of the filters.

When performed before the filters have been used, integrity testing monitors filter integrity prior to batch processing to prevent the use of a non-integral filter.

When performed after a batch has been processed, integrity testing can detect if the integrity of the filter has been compromised during the process. If a failed filter is detected, an operator will be notified of a problem immediately after batch processing, eliminating delay by and allowing rapid reprocessing.

Types of Integrity Tests

Classifications of Integrity Testing
There are two classifications of integrity testing -- destructive and non-destructive. In beverage applications, the routine integrity test is the non-destructive one.

Types of Non-Destructive Testing
There are three types of non-destructive test: bubble point test, diffusion test, and water flow integrity test for hydrophobic filters (the HydroCorr Test). The pressure hold, forward flow, and pressure decay tests are variations of the diffusion test.

Due to the size of the filtration area and the type of beverage application, the usual integrity tests performed are the diffusion test or the pressure hold test. You cannot perform the bubble point test in your beverage application because the high membrane surface area generates significant diffusion, making it very difficult to detect the bubble point.

Integrity Testing Training & Certification

A Vital Tool - Merck’s Integrity Testing Training & Certification
Merck’s two-day interactive Operator Certification Training Course (Integrity Testing Training and Certification) is vital for those who use integrity test filters, including quality and validation personnel, supervisors, technicians, and operators.

Experienced instructors combine hands-on laboratory exercises with interactive classroom instruction to present the most current methods of integrity testing, preparing participants to meet cGMP criteria, and providing 1.1 Continuing Education Credits though the International Association of Continuing Education and Training upon successful completion of this course.

Though this course was originally developed for the medical device, biotech, and pharmaceutical industries, we can adapt our original Operator Certification Training to fit the needs of those in the beverage industry.

For more information, go to Merck Technical Training Centers.

 
 
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