Toppan Printing's new radio frequency identification (RFID) tag housings for medical equipment are made of Radel R-5100 polyphenylsulfone (PPSU) resin from Solvay Specialty Polymers USA, LLC for exceptional autoclavability and toughness. These RFID tag housings are among the first made of thermoplastic for the healthcare market.
RFID tag identification systems offer more efficient management of hospital medical equipment that requires autoclave sterilization, according to Toppan Printing, a leading Japan-based supplier of RFID tags, readers, writers, and systems. The current product identification methods which use bar codes or manual quantity management are often susceptible to read errors due to surface contamination on bar codes, the company says. As a result, the healthcare industry has increasingly moved to RFID tag management systems that are readable through a non-contact method.
Toppan Printing has designed and developed three versions of the reusable RFID tag for a range of medical applications including forceps, disposable gauze, operating room gowns, and cases and trays. RFID housings made of Radel PPSU resin withstand the autoclave process, which exposes medical equipment to high temperature, high pressure, and high humidity.
Radel PPSU is itself a super-tough transparent thermoplastic with high heat resistance, excellent hydrolytic stability, and excellent resistance to bases and other chemicals. It can withstand over 1000 cycles of steam sterilization without any significant loss of properties. Radel PPSU is compliant with ISO 10993-1 for non-implantable applications.
The RFID tags are available in different sizes including three injection molded coin-shaped tags ranging in size (starting at 6.5 mm outer diameter and up to 3 mm thickness). They are being offered for sampling and testing to OEM customers and Toppan Printing expects them to be commercially available in December of this year.
Solvay Specialty Polymers is a global leader in the development of sulfone polymer technology, launching Udel polysulfone nearly 45 years ago. In addition, Solvay’s experience as a key materials supplier in the healthcare field spans more than 20 years. The company is a leading manufacturer of high-performance plastics, offering a broad range of materials for healthcare instruments and medical devices. More recently, Solvay has successfully introduced its line of Solviva Biomaterials and offers them for use in a range of implantable devices.
More information is available at www.toppan.co.jp/english/.
Learn more at www.solvayspecialtypolymers.com.
Posted by Janine E. Mooney, Editor
November 29, 2011