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Package Case Study November 1, 2012

Device maker uses copolyester for hospital tube delivery systems

Material withstands use in transporting patient-critical items and delivers multiple benefits to hospital workers.
Pevco Eastman

Baltimore-based Pevco Pneumatic Tube Systems designs, manufactures, installs, and supports hospital pneumatic tube delivery systems that enable healthcare professionals to quickly, safely, and reliably transport patient-critical materials between labs, pharmacies, blood banks, operating rooms, emergency departments, and nurses’ stations.
When the delivery system maker sought a durable material to withstand heavy use and a reliable material to transport patient-critical items, it turned to Eastman Chemical Co.’s Tritan™ TEC-6™, a pneumatic tube carrier to provide the durability, clarity, and chemical resistance needed with such a device.

“A busy hospital sends more than 5,000 items per day through its pneumatic tube system [PTS],” says Steve Dahl, Pevco’s director of product development and marketing. “Carriers see a lot of use, so they need to be not only durable but also lightweight and easy to use. The Pevco TEC-6 is a significant improvement over carriers currently on the market, as it’s more durable and ergonomic and easier to track.”

Hospitals use a PTS instead of people to deliver small materials—such as pharmaceuticals, lab specimens, and blood products—24 hr/day, 365 days/year.

The use of Eastman Tritan™ copolyester for Pevco TEC-6 has helped differentiate the tube carrier from competing products and highlighted the carrier’s durability and ergonomic features. Its clarity, for example, allows hospital staff to see the inside of the carriers before they open them, providing improved safety. The material’s durability withstands the constant handling and transporting of drugs and specimens. Tritan also gives the device body a slightly pliable, easily gripped surface that enhances its ergonomics, making it easier to use for hospital staff, no matter the amount of training received. 

“We chose to work with Eastman for the Pevco TEC-6 because of our engineering team’s previous design and manufacturing experience with Eastman Tritan™ copolyester, as well as the team’s experience working with Eastman’s technical experts on previous projects,” Dahl says. “Eastman’s customer-focused sales engineering approach offered us substantial face-to-face technical consultation and support in a timely manner. This partnership provided us with a high level of confidence that the final product would meet all requirements.”

When selecting Eastman Tritan™ copolyester to be used for Pevco TEC, which was specifically designed to be made with the material, Pevco searched for and selected a custom molder that had previously used Tritan. Pevco introduced the TEC-6, which stands for trackable ergonomic carrier with a 6-in. diameter, in May 2012. The device is available in black/clear, red/clear, blue/clear and green/clear. Hospitals use colors to distinguish a carrier’s contents and to identify its home department.

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