Fletcher, NC (November 15, 2022; Equilibar release) — Equilibar has announced the launch of a new Single Use Technology Division to meet the fast-evolving fluid control needs of the pharmaceutical industry. Ryan Heffner, PE, was named Single Use Technology manager, leading a team of professionals focused on developing and refining products for this emerging market.
“"In biopharma, single use technology has grown rapidly in recent years," Heffner said. “The industry has experienced a trend of using flow manufacturing systems that are agile enough to switch rapidly to produce a variety of drug products to meet changing needs. This lines up with the guidelines of Pharma 4.0™, the initiative of the International Society for Pharmaceutical Engineering, which encourages the automation of devices to gather more insight about process data and to gain more control over versatile systems.”
Other advantages of single use technologies include the elimination of clean-in-place and steam-in-place requirements as well as an increased ability to create manufacturing sites that are able to provide medicine to remote areas by overcoming transportation limitations.
While much of Pharma 4.0 relates to the optimization of plant operation, hardware suppliers such as Equilibar are needed to provide controls that integrate with the trend.
Equilibar’s first single use fluid control device is the SDO valve, which provides precise control of both back pressure and flow. “The SDO is the first wetted single use valve in the pharmaceutical manufacturing space,” Heffner said. “That means the benefits of Equilibar’s dome-loaded multi-orifice technology — extreme precision, easy automation and flexible flow rate capabilities — are expanded to many new systems.”
The SDO features a disposable valve body made of polymer that can be irradiated and inserted into a stainless steel support housing with wing nut closure for quick and easy assembly. “The entire SDO line has the ability to transform single use systems, with wide-reaching impact for improved tangential flow filtration, chromatography, and gradient elution buffer preparation, which all correlate to improvements in drug manufacturing as a whole,” Heffner said.
In November, the SDO valve product line was awarded the Pharma Innovation Award by Pharma Manufacturing magazine.
Equilibar’s Single Use Technology division includes engineers, technicians, customer liaisons and supply chain specialists who are actively engaged in research and development efforts to bring more devices to market to solve the challenges of single use fluid management.