Medical swab manufacturer gets help in its fight AGAINST COVID-19

Left: Warner Electric was able to accommodate the urgent need for reliable clutch/brakes that would allow a medical swab manufacturer to rapidly expand its production capabilities

Below: Super CB-6, features a response time of 45 milliseconds, supporting high cycle rates for fast-paced applications


ince the pandemic struck, many medical equipment manufacturers have been setting up ambitious, fast- paced activities to boost production of critical resources. This requires highly responsive and reliable partners, and Warner Electric is just one example company that accommodates the urgent need for reliable clutch/brakes that would allow a medical swab manufacturer to rapidly expand its production capabilities to support the growing need for SARS- CoV-2 testing. Nasopharyngeal (NP) swabs for respiratory virus detection are highly- specialised instruments, whose features greatly differ from conventional swabs. Made of high-tech medical materials, they have to be long, thin and partially flexible to get to the upper part of the throat, behind the nose. Also, like all medical devices, these swabs need cleanroom environment production, as well as meeting stringent regulatory requirements.

SPECIALISED SWABS To address this supply challenge and release millions of NP swabs a week to the US market, one of the world’s largest manufacturers of medical swabs committed to retrofitting and equipping a factory in Maine within weeks. The facility required 40 new machines, all of which needed to use wrap spring


clutch/brakes to provide indexing functionality as the swabs move through the units. Since the braking systems had to be extremely reliable and be delivered within two weeks, this OEM selected Warner Electric, a brand of Altra Industrial Motion Corp., as its supplier. The Super Clutch/Brake (SCB) series of self-contained, packaged wrap spring clutch/brake assemblies was identified as the ideal equipment for the 40 processing machines. The solution offers a complete, factory-assembled package that is ready for installation, with minimum maintenance. The specific SCB model selected, Super CB-6, features a response time of 45ms, supporting high cycle rates for fast-paced applications. In addition, it is able to withstand a maximum operating speed of 500RPM and a static torque of 56.5N-m.

EXCEEDING EXPECTATIONS Despite the tight delivery deadline, Warner Electric’s plant in New Hartford, the US, delivered the equipment ahead of the two-week deadline. The new facility, now operational, is enabling the manufacturer to more than double its existing capacity and meet demand for COVID-19 testing components in a remarkably short timeframe. “We are delighted to see our products play a key part in critical medical

manufacturing plants as well as to have been involved in such a unique and challenging project,” said Scott Galway, Product Manager at Warner Electric. We are looking forward to supporting businesses that need to quickly ramp up production with our solutions and services. The project took place during the pandemic, therefore ensuring the safety of everyone involved in the project was a top priority. To address these issues, Warner Electric’s measures ensured that all operations were guided by World Health Organization (WHO) health advice and the US Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Accomplishing the tight project deadlines was therefore an added achievement in light of the increased challenges caused by the current global health crisis.

Warner Electric

www.warnerelectric-eu. com


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