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Biomaterials Supplier Builds State-of-the-Art R&D and Production Facility

Originally Published MPMN January 2004

INDUSTRY NEWS

Biomaterials Supplier Builds State-of-the-Art R&D and Production Facility

Norbert Sparrow

A supplier of custom compounds for use in medical tubing and devices, Foster Corp. is building a state-of-the-art facility for the production of nanocomposites and other biomedical polymers.

As medical devices become more complex, so do the demands on materials suppliers. OEMs want "lean and clean production," says Ken Pickering, director of operations at Foster Corp. (Dayville, CT; www.fostercomp.com). And he intends to give them just that. The firm has broken ground on a 45,000-sq-ft biomedical polymer compounding facility. The plant will produce nanocomposites and water-soluble plastics, among other products. It is slated to begin operations in January 2004.

Neurology catheters, drug-eluting stents, and other advanced devices have placed new challenges on materials suppliers, says the firm. It has responded by investing in the latest production and data-tracking systems and a meticulously clean environment. Epoxy floors cover the entire plant, and leading-edge filtration and air management systems have been installed. A lean workflow design is an integral part of the layout.

The biomedical market calls for quality data, detailed tracking, and rapid turnaround times, adds Pickering. He notes that manufacturing software and bar coding systems will track materials from reception to finished goods. The firm has also added new extrusion lines for development and production use.

Copyright ©2004 Medical Product Manufacturing News

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