Medical Adhesives

Epoxy Technology, Billerica, MA, has completed ISO 10993 testing of its previously Class VI adhesives, as well as the addition of 12 new medical-device-grade adhesives, extending its MED line of biocompatible products to 23. To date, 14 products have undergone ISO 10993-5 cytotoxicity testing, and nine additional products have undergone even more screening, passing all ISO 10993-4, 5, 6, 10, and 11 testing. Included in testing for EPO-TEK® MED-301 was an extended implantation test, from the normal 2 weeks to 12 weeks, which it passed. This specific optically clear epoxy adhesive is often used for molding header systems on many types of devices including pacemakers, ICDs, and neurostimulators.

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PPSU Material

Solvay, Alpharetta, GA, offers polyphenylsulfone (PPSU) for use in medical equipment. The company's Radel® PPSU was recently chosen by Legacy Medical Solutions to optimize a large-format sterilization tray for surgical instruments. The resin's strength-to-weight ratio and ability to withstand high pH cleaners during repeated sterilization cycles and high-temperature autoclaves were key factors in the decision to utilize the material to improve the design, manufacture, and use of the tray. The tray, which measures (59.7 × 38.1 × 14.2 cm), is comprised of a thermoformed transparent lid and an opaque base tray made from Radel® PPSU resin that secures with a metal clamping system.

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Braze Alloys

Morgan Advanced Materials, Windsor, UK, has improved its braze alloys service to support U.S. customers requiring mission-critical components. The braze alloys are manufactured in configurations specific to customers’ requirements. Many applications of braze alloys are used in research and development projects, and information and data is needed quickly for small-run orders. The company has created a dedicated resource to handle inquiries from contract braze houses, while reducing lead times on commonly used alloys. The company can provide precious and nonprecious braze alloys, presintered preforms, and braze inhibitors like Stopyt, which prevents the unwanted flow of molten brazing filler metals.

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Coating Systems

Vapor Technologies, Inc. (VaporTech), Longmont, CO, has launched a new line of coating machines. The VT-i Series PVD coating machines are designed to meet needs for efficiency, cost-control, product quality, and differentiation. These new systems include the VT-500i™, VT-1000i™, and VT-1500i™ (and 3000i ™) systems. The VT-500i is the most compact machine for small-batch manufacturing operations. The VT-1000i system is a compact, higher capacity system for medium-size operations. The VT-1000i machine, which offers 6x capacity, is a PVD and DLC system for medium-volume applications. The VT-1500i system is designed for high-volume, larger manufacturing operations, while the VT-3000i is an updated version of the VT-3000, with a smaller footprint.

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Integrated Circuits

California Eastern Laboratories (CEL), Santa Clara, CA, now offers Tokyo-based THine Electronics integrated circuits (ICs) through CEL's distribution partners. CEL will continue to provide technical support as well as evaluation tools to aid customers’ design-ins of THine products. Products include serializer and deserializer ICs deploying LVDS and V-by-One® HS industry standards. The THine product line includes image signal processor ICs and repeater ICs, which reform a high-speed signal to improve its signal quality and enable gigabit serial signal transmission, such as USB3.1 Gen2, PCI Express Gen2, and SATA Gen2, over longer cables. Applications include wearable devices and medical equipment.

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Automated Surface Analysis

An automated solution for evaluating material surfaces is available from BTG Labs, Cincinnati, OH. The Surface Analyst XA is designed to reduce waste, rework, and recalls when poorly prepared substrate surfaces lead to bonding, coating, sealing, painting, or printing failure. The XA delivers real-time surface condition feedback to manufacturers to ensure that adhesion processes will be successful. The unit deposits a highly purified drop of water on a surface and then measures the contact angle. Automating increases the speed and efficiency by completing inspections on multiple surface points on a material surface at rates of up to 5,000 inspections per hour. As a result, it maps a surface across multiple points, ensuring the consistency and uniformity of surface quality.

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Extrusion Reciprocating Head

Guill Tool, West Warwick, RI, has released a new reciprocating head. The traditional tip-and-die assembly is replaced with a linear reciprocating assembly that changes the tube's profile within a given length. This process is repeated throughout a single extrusion run without interruptions. Cutting capability, in association with the extrusion speed, cuts the finished product to length. Only one extrusion run is needed to produce a finished product, as opposed to multiple extrusion runs with tooling changes along with a manual assembly operation to connect different tubing shapes. The reciprocating head eliminates an assembly operation.

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Cable and Harness Tester

CAMI Research Inc., Acton, MA, manufactures an automation-ready cable and harness tester for assembly, prototyping, production, and QC of standard or custom wire cables and harnesses. The CableEye tester includes a comprehensive software package that provides test functions, graphic wiring display, connectors database, reporting, data logging, automation scripting, and other features. In addition to being used to automate the test itself, the automation scripting lets users generate and display rich text work instructions with images. Work instructions can be coupled with operator text-to-speech conversion to form a heads-down workstation.

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Power Supplies

Traco Power North America, San Jose, CA, has expanded its TIB series of industrial power supplies. The series now includes the TIB-EX family of 80, 120, 240, and 480 W DIN rail power supplies that are designed for harsh environments. The new TIB-EX models include expanded full load thermal performance, enhanced shock and vibration specifications, and additional outputs of 12 and 48 VDC. They feature 12, 24, and 48 V outputs (–2 ~ +17 percent VADJ Range); high efficiency operation of 88–95 percent; and 150 percent peak power for 4 seconds. They are packaged in a ruggedized metal enclosure.

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Foot Switch Guide

A guide from Steute, Ridgefield, CT, provides answers to frequently answered questions about medical device foot switches. The 24-page downloadable MedFAQ guide addresses advantages of wireless foot switches, medical applications, wireless protocols and specifications, speed of response, and battery life. It also covers custom design capabilities, types of receivers and outputs, and regulatory compliance. A section on safety and security is also included.

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Medical Design Briefs Magazine

This article first appeared in the May, 2019 issue of Medical Design Briefs Magazine.

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