Over the years, medical device manufacturers have improved their products to become highly reliable, compact and non-intrusive. Users benefit from preemptive monitoring of critical measures, proper dosages and the convenience these devices provide. Whether at the bedside or on the body as a wearable, medical devices offer life-protecting and life-improving value to users.
Filtration presents unique challenges to device manufacturers. To ensure reliable, long term operation of equipment, using the best performing, state-of-the-art filtration technologies equalizes pressure and reduces condensation — preventing the ingress of liquids and other contaminants.
Here, we will explore the benefits of microfiltration and venting and highlight product solutions for medical device manufacturers.
Microfiltration media, such as aspire® microfiltration membranes, protects equipment from contamination during use. Because of the microporous structure, the protective membrane allows gas to pass through with a low pressure drop while providing a liquid and particulate barrier. Choosing the correct pore size results in bacteria and virus removal from the airstream, and in the case of a suction collection canister, the hydrophobic nature of the filter acts as a safety shut off valve to stop liquids contaminating the vacuum line.
Vents, such as aspire® venting membranes, provide critical protection against liquids and particulates while allowing air and gas to pass through the membrane, providing rapid pressure equalization and high airflow. The hydrophobic ePTFE vents can be treated with a proprietary oleophobic coating for added protection against liquids and oils. Vents can be combined with a charcoal adsorbent for use in ostomy and urology bags to permit easy inflation of the device while safely retaining contents and odors.
All of these applications benefit in similar ways by the inclusion of microfiltration and venting membranes in their design.
Automated electronic drug administration devices can be worn 24 hours a day. They need to be durable as the patient goes about their normal daily activities, perhaps including things like showering, swimming and jogging. It is imperative that the electronics within the wearable device are protected from the water, soap, dirt and dust that they will be exposed to, and they must vent to assure proper operation. Hence, the venting holes, are covered and sealed with protective aspire® ePTFE membranes.
Parker's aspire® product line includes a full range of microfiltration and venting products in a variety of formats. With decades of engineering and manufacturing experience, Parker's innovative filtration team works closely with customers to solve their most critical challenges. The product portfolio includes a broad range of specialized microfiltration and venting solutions that are available in a variety of formats, including membranes, laminates, and custom die cuts. Consistent airflow, excellent retention and chemical resistant properties are the cornerstone of aspire® products.
Article contributed by Sarah Propp, engineering manager, Parker Performance Materials.