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Supplier Stories for the Week of November 3

Here’s what was new in the world of medical device suppliers during the week of November 3.

  • United Soft Plastics (USP) has announced the opening of a new 10 million lb production facility in Houston for thermoplastic elastomers (TPE).  Complementing USP’s existing facility in Lawrenceville, GA, the new plant taps new compounding equipment to expand production of its broad portfolio of thermoplastic elastomers including traditional SEBS-based TPE, TPO, TPU, and special products such as acrylic-based TPE compounds.

    “This investment reaffirms our continued commitment to the engineering TPE plastics market in the U.S., Mexico, and also outside of the Americas,” stated Benedict Herbst, executive vice president of USP, in a news release. “The expansion of our manufacturing assets will play a key role in meeting the application development needs of our customers and further unlock new business opportunities and maintain our superior customer response time.” 

    The new manufacturing facility will run a twin-screw extrusion system furnished by KraussMaffei Berstorff along with an underwater pelletizer from Nordson. The nearly 20,000-sq-ft facility is also equipped with testing equipment and a fully equipped laboratory.

    USP has performed extensive product development work and now offers a broad portfolio of TPE products. Offerings now include materials developed to meet special regulatory requirements within the FDA, EU food contact, and NSF. The additional capacity will also allow USP's existing plant in Georgia to further focus on specialized product development and creating cutting-edge solutions for its customers, the company reported.

    The new plant also positions the company closer to raw material hubs and high-volume customer accounts in Mexico, the Southwest United States, and Asia. 

    [Image courtesy of UNITED SOFT PLASTICS]

  • Scapa Healthcare introduces a next-generation release system compatible with hydrocolloid, hydrogel, acrylic, polyurethane gel, and silicone gel adhesives to ensure proper placement of small patches and dressings on the skin.

    “Scapa Healthcare has extensive expertise working with all forms of skin-contact adhesives and is proud to offer our customers a new ready-to-market solution for quick branding and market introduction,” stated Nohora Cardenas, director, strategic marketing, Scapa Healthcare, in a news release. “This next-generation proprietary release system will enable our customers to bring a more effective and differentiated solution to the market place that significantly enhances the user experience.”

    The proprietary release system eases application of small, thin adhesive patches while minimizing finger touch. It is suitable for positioning small bandages and patches over target areas such as acne spots, cold sores, insect bites, corns, and warts.

    [Image courtesy of SCAPA HEALTHCARE]

  • Saki Corp. debuts a compact, lightweight, inline 3D-CT automated X-ray inspection machine, the 3Xi-M110, for inspection of printed circuit board assemblies (PCBAs). The machine reduces the dose of and exposure to X-rays during inspection and features new soldering quality inspection functions for PCB assembly applications.

    The new X-ray inspection system ensures the quality of hidden solder joints for bottom-electrode packages, such as BGAs, LGAs, and QFNs, which are found in advanced embedded devices and more. Its planar computed tomography (PCT) performs precise volumetric measurements and shape reconstruction to find voids, head-in-pillow (HiP), and other defects that are difficult to identify. 

    The 3Xi-M110 employs a double motor-driven system equipped with a high-precision linear scale manufactured by Magnescale Co. Ltd., offering speed, accuracy, and precision. Saki's enhanced PCT technology algorithm improves image capture speed by 30%. In addition, its X-ray tube can reduce X-ray exposure up to 70% by powering on the X-rays only at the moment of image capture. An exposure dose simulator allows the user to monitor the radiation dose. 

    Saki will demonstrate the PCB inspection capabilities of the 3Xi-M110 at Productronica 2019 November 12-15.

    [Image courtesy of SAKI CORP.]

  • The Lubrizol Corp. announced that its contract development and manufacturing organization, Particle Sciences, is to be renamed Lubrizol Life Science Health (LLS Health). The new Lubrizol Life Science business group brings together Lubrizol’s personal, home, and healthcare business units as part of a previous reorganization. This development follows Lubrizol’s acquisition of Bavaria Medizin Technologie GmbH, a German contract development and manufacturing organization of intravascular and nonvascular devices. Such efforts show that Lubrizol continues to expand its concept-to-commercialization solutions for medical device and pharmaceutical companies as part of its LLS Health business. 

    As one of the first projects at its new production facility, LLS Health has produced a customer’s first set of three registration batches, an aseptic fill to be incorporated into a novel sterile multi-use topical ophthalmic delivery device.  

    “We have built a strong reputation for complex drug product expertise with a flexible and proactive approach to solving drug development challenges,” said Dr. Robert Lee, president, CDMO Division, LLS Health. “As LLS Health, this expertise and flexibility will continue, backed by the collective expertise of Lubrizol Life Science, and ongoing investments in our team and facilities.”

    [Logo courtesy of LUBRIZOL CORP.]

  • SpotSee introduces the ShockWatch RFID impact indicator, which combines impact-damage monitoring with radio-frequency identification (RFID) technology. It can track damage through the supply chain and identify affected inventory such as medical devices and equipment.

    “RFID technology has already helped companies reduce inventory management costs by seamlessly automating asset identification,” stated Angela Kerr, vice president, product portfolio, SpotSee, in a news release. “ShockWatch RFID combines the benefits of traditional RFID inventory management with impact-damage monitoring, allowing users to leverage existing RFID infrastructure to identify and reduce the sources of damage in their supply chain.”

    In addition to damage monitoring, it provides an electronic record of information in the user’s enterprise resource planning (ERP) software, warehouse management system, or directly into the SpotSee Cloud. By gathering data throughout the supply chain, ShockWatch RFID helps customers identify where damage is occurring, allowing users to isolate damaged inventory for further inspection and determine where the root cause is in the supply chain, the company reported. 

    [Image courtesy of SPOTSEE]

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