Manufacturer of precision pumps for diagnostic equipment manufacturers, TriContinent Scientific has collaborated with sealing specialist Trelleborg to develop a novel pump platform seal design for syringes used in life sciences and biotechnology.
Such syringes have to be precise and reliable, as well as long-lived and resilient in order to maintain automated instruments used for in vitro testing, chemical analysis and cytometry.
“Such instruments run 24/7, pumping out small but exact amounts of liquids or reagents,” explains Mik Bajka, engineering manager with TriContinent Scientific. “A broken or leaking syringe translates into expensive downtime.”
Usually plastic plungers ride inside a bore made of glass or ceramics, and the seal between the two components is often the weakest link. Trelleborg’s engineers helped select the right seal material and sealing element, or energiser. This keeps the syringe running even when dispensing harsh reagents that would damage other pumps.
Trelleborg recommended an integrated polymer dynamic seal with a custom-shaped energiser tucked away inside a polyethylene jacket. The energiser is made from a glass fiber reinforced thermoplastic material sheathed in ultra-high molecular weight plastic.
The pump has reduced downtime from 28 per cent to less than one per cent,” says Bajka.