An innovative solution to medical device housing failure

As healthcare facilities ramp up the use of aggressive disinfectants, traditional plastics are feeling the strain. It’s all too common to see device housings become sticky; wear thin in high-touch areas; or crack, crumble, or shatter after only a few months of service. The issue? Devices that were designed just a few years ago are typically made with materials that lack the right combination of impact strength and chemical compatibility with today’s stringent cleaning protocols.
Eastman Tritan copolyester is an excellent choice for medical housings due to its superior toughness and high chemical resistance. Using Tritan in your device can also help prevent costly repairs and replacements, keeping patients safe and customers happy.
In our webinar “Many Medical Hardware Housing Complaints. One New Technology Solution,” we share an in-depth look at how device performance is being compromised by the increased use of aggressive disinfectants and how material choice can make a key difference in device success.
Watch it on demand to learn more about:
  • The true cause of part failures and how to address it
  • Strategies to improve device reliability, reduce repair costs, and extend product life
  • Test results comparing Tritan’s performance with that of traditional housing materials
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Why should you choose Eastman medical grade polymers?
You want to create medical devices and packaging that ensure patient safety and provide long-lasting reliability. To accomplish that, you have to choose high performance medical grade materials. Manufacturers who specify medical grades of Eastman Tritan copolyester not only get access to advanced, high-quality raw materials but also to a strong level of support throughout the regulatory journey to commercialization of a new product.
By specifying Eastman medical grade polymers, you get help with:
  • Biocompatibility
  • Sterilization
  • Quality systems
  • Dedicated regulatory support
  • Regulatory statements and product regulatory information sheets
  • FDA Drug Master Files
  • Quality systems and cGMP
  • Application development and technical services
  • Educational webinars and customized lunch and learn sessions
  • Design recommendations
  • Material FFU criteria and specific performance testing
  • Competitive materials analysis or ID
  • Physical property testing
  • Aging and sterilization studies
Eastman has long history as reliable global supplier of raw materials. We provide not only leadership in innovation and business continuity but also regulatory support and processes that help customers take products to market with greater efficiency and confidence. For more information on the support services we provide, contact an Eastman customer service representative.
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Supporting a circular economy
Traditionally, the world operates in a linear economy—raw materials are used to make products, which are then used and disposed of as waste. A circular economy focuses on making the most of the world’s resources by providing end-of-life solutions to reduce, reuse, and recycle products and materials that typically end up in landfills and waterways.
For manufacturers, there’s a lot to consider when making the shift to circular processes or materials. Eastman has developed a unique platform of solutions focused on minimizing waste and maximizing value to support the evolution of the circular economy. Our portfolio of circular solutions includes:
Advanced circular recycling (ACR)
This operation involves chemical recycling on a broadly mixed stream of polyester-family polymers using a process called methanolysis. Through methanolysis, polyester materials are taken back to their polymer building blocks. These building blocks can then be reintroduced to the production of new polyester-based polymers, delivering a true circular solution. ACR takes low-quality polyester waste that would typically be diverted to landfills and instead recycles it into high-quality polyesters suitable for use in a variety of end markets.
Carbon renewal technology (CRT)
This technology helps divert materials such as flexible packaging and plastic films away from landfills. By modifying the front end of Eastman’s cellulosics production stream, CRT converts plastic waste back to simple and versatile molecular components. The process partially oxidizes the waste plastic, converting the feedstock input at very high efficiency back into the basic building blocks of Eastman’s cellulosics product lines that serves an array of industries.
As the world transforms, these new technologies will help unlock value in waste plastics, which currently cannot be recycled or are difficult to recycle. For more information on Eastman’s role in the circular economy, visit our website!
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Check out the Tritan Mold It app!
Did you know you can find the same great information from on the Tritan Mold It mobile app? Download the app for your iOS device to have the latest expertise on Eastman Tritan copolyester right at your fingertips.
With this handy app, users can:
  • Calculate drying time
  • Calculate melt residence time
  • Calculate shot capacity utilization
  • Download data sheets
  • Watch videos
  • Get advice from the Tritan experts
The app is an excellent resource for injection molders and designers to get the best results from Eastman Tritan copolyester. Its wealth of practical information can be useful for designing, molding, processing, and fabricating other engineering polymers—for consumer and medical products. The app’s “Quick Links” function also makes it easy to dive deeper into Tritan applications, successes, and the latest tips for molding Tritan. 
Download the free Tritan Mold It app from the App Store today.    

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The effect of electron beam sterilization on Eastman Tritan™
Sterilizing medical devices helps reduce the bioburden to a safe level with minimal effects on the physical and optical properties of its polymers. Some of the most widely used sterilization methods in the medical industry today include gamma radiation, ethylene oxide (EtO), autoclave, and low-temperature hydrogen peroxide gas plasma. Another method gaining in popularity is electron beam (e-beam) radiation. It’s a safe, reliable source of energy thanks to recent advancements in operating efficiency.
Compared to gamma radiation, e-beam radiation typically costs less due to higher dose rates that reduce the time of exposure at the same target dose. The shorter exposure time also minimizes the oxidation reactions that can occur at the polymer surface, resulting in less effect on resin properties than with gamma radiation.

To determine the effects of e-beam radiation on Tritan and other transparent medical polymers, Eastman conducted a series of studies that measured color shifting and physical property retention. Specific products tested are shown here:
Optical properties
Samples were exposed to e-beam radiation (25 and 50 kGy) and then stored in darkness. Their color was measured at days 3, 7, 14, and 42 using HunterLab UltraScan Sphere 8000 and the CIE L*, a*, b* color scale. (Samples were stored in darkness and only exposed to light for color measurement.)
Figure 2 shows the difference in b* color values between unexposed samples and sterilized samples at day 42—after e-beam radiation at both 25 and 50 kGy. 
Figure 2. Change in b* color 42 days after e-beam radiation—25 and 50 kGy  

Physical properties were measured before and after e-beam sterilization at 25 and 50 kGy. No physical property degradation was noted for Tritan MX711 or the other resins tested. The polyesters and copolyesters in the study showed no statistical change in molecular weight, although Tenite propionate 360 did show a loss of molecular weight, as expected from an aliphatic polymer. 

Read the complete details of these studies here
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