Oct 31, 2023

SIPA develops injection moulded blood collection tubes

The solution developed by SIPA, is the subject of a patent application, this aims to make it possible to adjust the core alignment from the front face of the cold half, in contrast to competing solutions that require access the back of the core plate. The company says that makes any adjustments easier and faster to carry out during production.

Production of high-quality blood collection tubes demands that wall thickness around the circumference is within very tight tolerances. SIPA claims this can only be guaranteed by precise design and especially accurate production of the various elements in the injection mould. While such criteria also apply to more common PET products like bottle preforms, consistently high performance over long-term production is more difficult to ensure with BCTs.

SIPA claims BCTs have a diameter much smaller than regular preforms, the various components of the mould also have reduced dimensions. In the specific case of the cores, these also have a small diameter, which means that their stiffness is lower than preform cores. As a result, they are more likely to flex under the pressure of the PET melt if the wave front during injection is not perfectly symmetrical.

The situation is made more critical by the fact that injection pressures used in BCT moulding need to be higher than in preform production, due to the higher length: thickness ratios of the tubes. This obviously puts the mould components under greater stress, increasing the potential for deflection of the cores.

The solution developed by SIPA aims to make it easier to fine-tune the positions of the cores, correcting any slightest deviation from the set value, and so enabling production of a product with optimal wall thickness.

A SIPA spokesperson said: "Our solution is unique because it allows the processor to make adjustments to the mould while it is still in the machine, simply via access to the front face of the cold, moving half, No disassembly is necessary, providing the user with a considerable advantage in time taken for the execution of the operations.

"Obviously the task is also much simpler than in an adjustment operation requiring access to the back of the mould, where the mould, or at least part of it, has to be taken out of the injection moulding machine, disassembled, adjusted, reassembled, and then refitted to the machine."