Watlow Products Addressing Miniaturization in Medical Markets
(PresseBox) (St. Louis, )Watlow, a leading designer and manufacturer of electric heaters, controllers and temperature sensors, is addressing the ongoing miniaturization of products in the medical market by developing smaller and more flexible products that allow for OEM design flexibility and increased patient safety and comfort.
Watlow's products are found in medical and analytical industries, including infant warmers, kidney dialysis machines, immunoassay equipment, chromatography machines, glucose monitoring, x-ray developers and many others.
"Changing global demographics, breakthroughs in medical research and diagnostics and general advances in healthcare have put the medical products industry at the forefront in demanding smaller and more efficient devices," says Jim Kreisel, Watlow's director or global market development, life sciences. "Parallel with reducing size is the need for increased precision and reduced system cost."
Watlow's primary "miniaturized" products for the medical market include:
ULTRAMIC(TM) 600 advanced ceramic heaters are constructed of aluminum nitride (AlN) resulting in a very low porosity, homogeneous, robust heater assemblies that provide the necessary heat transfer for high temperature and long heater life. Other benefits of this heater include high dielectric strength, a low leakage current of 10 A, uniform temperatures, high durability at low mass, a rapid ramp rate and an extremely low coefficient of thermal expansion (CTE). ULTRAMIC 600 heaters can operate up to 600°C (1112°F) with a ramp rate of up to 150°C (270°F) per second depending on the application, heater design and process parameters. This heater contains a unique integrated thermocouple configuration that improves the reliability of the sensor/heater interface to ensure fast responsiveness during high ramp rate applications. Unlike other ceramic heater manufacturers, Watlow has developed a standard design methodology allowing for fast design and delivery of ULTRAMIC heaters designed to meet customer's specific dimensional needs.
FREEFLEX(TM) miniature polymer heated tubing assemblies can heat moving fluids up to 100°C (212°F) or maintain temperatures as fluids move from a reservoir to a point-of-use. Watlow's innovative design puts the heating element in direct contact with the miniature polymer tubing, resulting in fast, efficient heating and temperature control over a portion or the entire length of the tube. FREEFLEX heated tubing has a durable "jacket" over the wound heating element that allows tubing to bend, flex or coil on equipment that moves. FREEFLEX can also be formed and routed around other system components in stationary applications.
The 1 8-inch FIREROD® heater is an example of an established technology that was enhanced to meet the requirements for portable immunoassay test equipment. Traditional cartridge heaters were limited to 1 4-inch diameter sizes, resulting in larger thermal assemblies. The 1/8-inch FIREROD features a helically wound resistance wire that produces higher watt densities and contributes to longer service life in space-restricted applications. The 1/8-inch FIREROD sheath is resistant to oxidation and corrosion, even at high temperatures. It also undergoes a swaging procedure that improves dielectric strength, heat transfer and tolerance to shock and vibration.