The useable shelf life of medical and pharmaceutical products is limited by the rate of decline of drug potency and sterility.
These are both controlled by the speed at which contaminants can sneak in through the packaging and ingredients find their way out.
The name for this is permeability and Versaperm has just finished developing its latest range of permeability meters to measure this effect.
Products with an alcoholic or aromatic base, including healthcare and cosmetic products are prone to exactly the same effect, with the top-notes of fragrances decaying particularly rapidly as volatile compounds permeate away.
To control the processes and materials used in these products, Versaperm's new single and multi-chamber instruments can optionally measure the permeability with respect to virtually any vapour, including water vapour - which is by far the world's most common contaminant.
The equipment can characterize the permeability of a wide range of materials and finished packaging including inhalers, unitary dose capsules, sachets, syringes and wound dressing packaging etc.
It can produce results quickly, accurately and with minimal operator training. Yet it is typically accurate to a few parts per million (ppm) or better.
It can measure the vapour permeability of almost any material against any gas/vapour and, unlike conventional gravimetric measurements, which take days or even weeks, it can produce results in as little as 30 minutes for some materials.
This speeds the never-ending quest for effective packaging with new marketing and technical features.
The new instrument can cope with several samples at a time. However, for companies who test too few samples to make the purchase of equipment viable, Versaperm also offers a fast turn around laboratory testing service.