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19th November 2012  Content supplied by: 

Cherwell Shortens Autoclave Validation Process

Cherwell Laboratories is helping JPen Medical, market leader in on-site maintenance and calibration of medical equipment and devices, to cut hours off equipment testing and validation times. By using DataTrace® self-contained, wireless, high-precision dataloggers for autoclave testing and validation, JPen Medical engineers can save as much as three hours at on-site visits. This is increasing productivity significantly - both for the company and its customers alike, as downtime is now minimised to a single autoclave cycle.

Since no wiring is required, DataTrace probes can be readily used to measure temperature and pressure directly inside an autoclave for full validation with FDA 21CFR11 compliance and minimal equipment downtime. Traditional autoclave validation involves the complex and protracted task of introducing many thermocouple wires into an autoclave chamber.

Taking an autoclave apart to fit wired probes through a port and then placing them securely within a load can prove extremely time-consuming. Furthermore, such thermocouples are not robust and require pre and post verification to identify any offset. "I knew there had to be an easier way of testing and validating autoclaves, which can take up to four hours when using wired thermocouples; the Cherwell system is saving us so much time, in fact we now only need to have one engineer on-site rather than two!" explained Scott Renshaw-Harris, Lead Engineer, JPen Medical.

"By using DataTrace, the whole process can take as little as 45 minutes - an autoclave cycle - since there is no need to calibrate the system and the wireless probes are compact and tough and can be simply placed directly inside the autoclave chamber," added Scott Renshaw-Harris. "Our own customer convenience is very important to us and Cherwell's solution means we can minimise their disruption. Not only can we cut our time on-site by hours, but now that we don't have to take a unit apart and rebuild it, we can completely eliminate potential risk of subsequent leak issues."

JPen Medical engineers have also found the Cherwell system to be very portable and easy to use with minimal training required. "Set up is very straight forward and takes just 5 minutes on the laptop, with readily accessible help files if ever needed. Additionally, before purchasing DataTrace, we knew Cherwell were a well-respected company and they have certainly proved to be very proactively helpful and knowledgeable about our business and needs," confirmed Scott Renshaw-Harris.

Following its highly successful application of DataTrace wireless dataloggers for autoclave validation in medical environments, JPen Medical is also considering their use for further applications, such as fridge and freezer validation. Future plans also include additional enhancements to customer convenience. Due to the simplicity of Cherwell's system, the company aims to provide on-site validation report print outs, so giving customers real-time results.

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Date Published: 19th November 2012

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