Cleaning Medical Wires with Ultrasonic Inline Cleaners
Medical fine wires require especially intense and thorough cleaning procedures. Ultrasonic inline cleaning is a highly efficient and reliable method to remove any residues from fine and ultra-fine wires used for medical purposes.
Medical Wire Cleaning using Hielscher Ultrasonics Inline Cleaners
Fine wires are used in surgical procedures, by surgical robots, for stents, and numerous other medical applications. Made from stainless steel, titanium, molybdenum, wolfram, alloys etc., medical wires offer various characteristics and areas of application depending on the material made from and on the wire diameter. Medial equipment must pass very high quality and cleanliness standards. With Hielscher Ultrasonics you can clean your metallic endless materials to highest standards.
Ultrasonic cleaning is suitable for:
- Surgical wires (fine and ultra-fine wires)
- Dental wires
- Kirschner wire or K-wires
- Threaded K-wires
- Guide wires
- Wires for catheter-based devices
- Bone pins
- Cannulated bars
- Intramedullary rods
- Cannulated screws
- Acupuncture needles
- Braided K-wires
Inline Wire Cleaning with Power Ultrasound
Metallic endless material such as wires, threaded wires, cannulas, rods, tapes and metals with complex surface structures can be highly efficiently and reliably cleaned using Hielscher ultrasonic inline cleaners. Ultrasonic inline cleaning is a contact-less cleaning method using the working principle of acoustic cavitation. The ultrasonic inline cleaning machines are equipped with ultrasonic transducers that generate high-frequency sound waves in the ultrasonic frequency range of 20 kHz. The transducers use piezoelectric material that converts electrical energy into mechanical vibrations. These vibrations at 20kHz are coupled as ultrasound waves into the cleaning liquid.
Contact-less Wire Cleaning Through Ultrasonic Cavitation
By concentrating ultrasonic power within a minimal liquid volume, we achieve a remarkably compact design. This streamlined setup seamlessly integrates into both existing and new production lines. Cavitation, a phenomenon induced by intense ultrasonic waves in liquids, plays a pivotal role in this process. The resultant pressure waves give rise to vacuum bubbles, which subsequently collapse. These implosions generate exceedingly high pressures and temperatures, accompanied by liquid jets reaching speeds of up to 400 km/h.
At the surface level, these mechanical forces effectively dislodge impurities, allowing them to be easily carried away by the cleaning solution. Achieving intensive cavitation and, consequently, thorough cleaning demands high amplitudes generated by low-frequency, high-intensity ultrasound at 20 kHz.
Ultrasonic cavitation exerts a profound cleaning effect, effortlessly eliminating impurities such as oil, grease, soaps, stearates, and dust. These contaminant particles are effectively dispersed within the cleaning solution. This crucial process prevents their reattachment to the material being cleaned, ensuring their complete removal. Employing cutting-edge ultrasonic technology, we generate robust cavitation fields, delivering exceptional cleaning results even at high line speeds.
Hielscher Ultrasonic Inline Cleaners feature
- High-intensity ultrasound inline cleaning
- Compatibility with most cleaning agents
- Optional bush modules
- Water filtration using filter cartridges
- Optional belt filter
- Drying using wind wipers
Advantages of Cleaning Medical Wires with Ultrasonics
The intense cleaning of medical fine wires is a crucial step in their production for several reasons:
- Thorough Cleaning: Acoustic cavitation generated by high-intensity, low-frequency ultrasound is superior when it comes to reliable cleaning results of medical wires and other medical equipment.
Ultrasonic inline cleaning of medical wires and medical equipment works as a contact-less cleaning method using the intense sono-mechanical forces of acoustic cavitation. Since medical wires and medical equipment require especially thorough cleaning, ultrasonic cleaning can be combined with chemical and thermal processes.
- Biocompatibility: Medical wires often come into direct contact with the human body, for example, in applications like stents, catheters, or implantable devices. Contaminants or residues on the wires could trigger an immune response or lead to infections. Thorough cleaning using intense ultrasonic cavitation ensures that the wires are contamination-free and biocompatible.
- Consistency and Reliability: In the medical field, consistency and reliability are paramount. Any contamination on the wire can introduce variations in the material properties, which can affect the performance of the final product. Ultrasonic inline cleaning ensures that each wire meets the required specifications.
- Preventing Corrosion: Medical wires are often made of materials like stainless steel, which can corrode over time. Ultrasonic inline cleaning helps remove contaminants that could accelerate corrosion, ensuring the long-term integrity of the wire.
Of course, Hielscher ultrasonic inline cleaners are used also for the cleaning of other endless materials during the manufacturings of medical equipment such as rods, tubes, probes and sensors.
Ultrasonic Cleaners for Sophisticated Inline Cleaning of Continuous Material
Hielscher Ultrasonics inline cleaning systems feature high-performance sonicators for the effective contact-less cleaning of continuous materials using acoustic cavitation. In addition, the cleaning liquids, pumps, heaters, filters and oil- skimmers, air-wipes for the final drying are installed in the system, too.
The patented sonotrodes were invented and designed for the special task of cleaning continuous profiles, such as wires or tapes. The ultrasonic power is concentrated in the liquid surrounding the wire in the cleaning bore. This results in extremely high power densities of up to 100 Watts per cubic centimeter. Common ultrasonic baths achieve not more than 0.02 Watts per cubic centimeter. In general, the diameter of the bore should be 3 to 4mm wider than the cross-section of the material to be cleaned. Our standard sonotrodes are capable of cleaning very fine (approx. 0,1 mm) to strong (approx. 32mm) wires. Larger material as well as special shapes can be cleaned by custom specific designs.
Special sonotrode geometries allow for a simultaneous cleaning of several wires in one single system. Therefore the appropriate sonotrodes are integrated into standard systems. The cleaning principle – and so the cleaning power is identical to that of systems for the single line cleaning. The choice of the right sonotrode is determined by the number of wires and their individual diameter. Furthermore, flat sonotrodes can be used for the cleaning of wide tapes or many parallel wires. For this, sonotrodes are installed above and beneath the material.
- high-efficiency inline cleaning
- state-of-the-art technology
- reliability & robustness
- adjustable, precise process control
- intelligent software
- smart features (e.g., programmable, data protocolling, remote control)
- easy and safe to operate
- low maintenance
- CIP (clean-in-place)
Design, Manufacturing and Consulting – Quality Made in Germany
Hielscher ultrasonicators are well-known for their highest quality and design standards. Robustness and easy operation allow the smooth integration of our ultrasonicators into industrial facilities. Rough conditions and demanding environments are easily handled by Hielscher ultrasonicators.
Hielscher Ultrasonics is an ISO certified company and put special emphasis on high-performance ultrasonicators featuring state-of-the-art technology and user-friendliness. Of course, Hielscher ultrasonicators are CE compliant and meet the requirements of UL, CSA and RoHs.
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Literature / References
- Leighton, Timothy; Birkin, Peter; Offin, Doug (2013): A new approach to ultrasonic cleaning. International Congress on Acoustics, January 2013.
- Fuchs, John F. (2002): Ultrasonic Cleaning: Fundamental Theory and Applications. In: Proceedings of Precision Cleaning May 15-17, 1995, Rosemont, IL, USA.