ISPE Glossary of Pharmaceutical and Biotechnology Terminology

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The first appearance in the effluent of an ion-exchange unit of unadsorbed components similar to those that deplete the activity of the resin bed. Breakthrough indicates that the resin is exhausted and needs to be regenerated.


Passage of a substance through a bed, filter, or process designed to eliminate it. For ion exchange processes, the first signs are leakage of ions (in mixed beds, usually Silica) and the resultant increase in conductivity. For organic removal beds, usually small, volatile compounds (Trihalomethanes (THMs) are common in activated carbon).

Publication Source: ISPE Baseline® Guide, Vol. 4: Water and Steam Systems (Second Edition)

Publication Date: 2011

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