Sensitive Package Testers
A variety of systems detect the smallest leaks and defects.
A testing instrument uses a solid-state mass-flow sensor to respond rapidly to flow changes, resulting in faster test cycles, according to the company. The system uses tandem regulators in the Sentinel F-21 to ensure a constant pressure source for reliable mass-flow readings. The dual-regulator configuration provides greater application flexibility by eliminating the need for reference testing. The F-21 also offers a simple operator panel, a flow range of 1–6000 scc/m, dual pressure testing capability, a self-test feature, and the ability to store 1000 test results for output to a printer or computer. Cincinnati Test Systems Inc., Cleves, OH; 513/202-5103; www.cincinnati-test.com/PR.
A nondestructive leak tester produces quantitative test results from products that cannot be accessed to pressurize through an access port as well as sealed, flexible medical and pharmaceutical packages. By combining the sensitivity of pressure or vacuum decay leak testing with the simplicity of sealed fixtures, the Solution-C system can detect holes as small as 5 microns. This highly sensitive method uses a proprietary chamber design to find leaks in product seals or walls and common package material seals such as films, foils, and laminates. The test instrument allows the operator to store up to 100 different functional programs and to link programs to design a sequence of tests to suit a specific need. Touch screen menu-driven operation allows the operator to control the test parameters, examine statistical analysis of results, or download data files easily. TM Electronics Inc., Boylston, MA; 508/869-6400; www. tmelectronics.com.
A company offers a leak detector that uses a nonhazardous 5% hydrogen in 95% nitrogen mixture to detect leaks. The hydrogen method allows for nondestructive testing with short cycle times and reliable results, regardless of temperature variations or the test object’s shape. The H2000 offers flexible detection solutions for a variety of medical applications, including medical packaging, such as the ability to locate leaks in collection bags, blood bags, IV bags, and nourishment bags. The system is extremely sensitive to hydrogen gas and can be used to detect leaks that are smaller than a bacterium. In conjunction with the Trace Gas Filler (TGF10), the H2000 releases a harmless mix of hydrogen into the bag, causing it to inflate, which allows the instant detection of a leak and easy identification of the leak source. Once the bag is inflated and the leak has been identified, the TGF10 can be used to deflate the bag back to its original form or shape. Sensistor Technologies Inc., North Billerica, MA; 978/439-9200; www.sensistor.com.
A high-speed, low-flow leak-testing instrument offers an air-based alternative to helium mass-spectrometer systems for QC testing of specialized products having very low leak-rate tolerances. The M-1075-44 leak detector accommodates all applications where leak-rate limits are specified as low as 10-4 sccs and production volumes may require testing of up to 7000 parts per hour. Approximately half the price of comparable helium testers, it also eliminates helium operation costs of 1–5 cents per test and avoids the potential problem of some test-part materials absorbing helium. Equipped to serve production-line 100% test requirements either as a self-contained single-station tester or integrated into automated assembly/test systems, the instrument can interface with a PLC or PC to receive downloads such as program modifications, or to share test data with other devices. InterTech Development Co., Skokie, IL; 847/679-3377; www.intertechdevelopment.com.