Laser Marking

Laser Marking opens up a new era of big data analytics for the pharmaceutical industry. The SCHOTT Smart Container system delivers ‘Industry 4.0’ to fill and finish operations, offering the ability to track and trace individual primary packaging containers, from production all the way to the end user.
What is Laser Marking

What makes the laser marking technology special?

An indelible, permanently linked, unique data matrix code is laser-melted onto the pharmaceutical primary packaging and can be linked to unique information about the container and its contents. By using this technology, mix-up risks are reduced, recalls can be quicker and easier, and line clearance becomes much more efficient.
Smart Container glass vial on its side with data matrix code on the bottom

Simple, cost-effective, efficient

Smart Containers enable customers to significantly streamline manufacturing operations with minimal investment in changing systems. For vials the code is applied on the bottom, avoiding the need for multiple camera installation or turning, and the easy location of missing containers makes line clearance a simple process.

Bottom view of a Smart Container glass vial with data matrix code

Strong, chemically stable, non-abrasive

The code remains stable during washing, autoclaving and depyrogenation up to temperatures of 600 °C. It also resists abrasion, avoiding the risk of particle contamination when compared to solutions that require additional substances for the application of the code. Low-impact laser technology also ensures that a vial’s strength is kept intact.


Understand more about Laser Marking

How it works

How smart track and trace works

Each SCHOTT Smart Container is laser-marked with a unique identifier, enabling control of manufacturing at the most granular level possible: the individual unit. This tiny data matrix code is applied through a lasering process that ensures glass strength is retained and the code cannot be removed. It also remains stable throughout the fill-and-finish process. This method makes each container traceable all along the production line, facilitating improvements in reject management, line clearance and targeted recalls, reducing mix-ups and making lyophilization more efficient.
Improving pharmaceutical manufacturing, container by container

Improving pharmaceutical manufacturing, container by container

Each SCHOTT Smart Container is marked with a data matrix code that can be as small as one square millimeter, or 14 x 14 dots. Developed according to ISO/IEC 16022, the matrix can be either numeric or alphanumeric, containing 16 or 24 digits, giving a possible combination of over several sextillion different numbers.

The code is applied to the glass through a laser melting process, and it remains stable during the whole fill and finish process – through washing, autoclaving, and depyrogenation up to a temperature of 600 °C. It is also indelible and so permanently linked to the individual vial. The result is mass manufacturing of containers that remain under individual monitoring all along the production line.



  • The code is made of glass, so no new material used. This offers full traceability of the complete value chain.
  • Gentle lasering process, so no increased risk of glass breakage. 
  • Resistant to temperature and humidity during the entire fill and finish process.
  • Readability of up to 1,000 vials/min. 
  • Flexible and secure data management via a parallel system. 

We are certified

SCHOTT is a global supplier of high-quality products and services, strictly adhering to tight regulatory directives to meet your requirements as a manufacturer. Our Smart Containers have been developed according to the ISO/IEC 16022 international standard.

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Whether you need more information, samples, a quote, or advice for a project, I would be delighted to talk to you.

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