Welding in the Medical Sector

Welding in the Medical Sector

With continuous advancement in medical practices, the industry is continually innovating new techniques to treat a range of diseases. Advancements in treatments come from the development of novel medical devices and equipment, all aiming to improve current treatment processes and save lives. To ensure that products are safe for use, the manufacturing and welding process must be monitored in order to adhere to strict health care rules and regulations. We investigate the difficulties surrounding medical welding and how welding is critical to the medical sector.

Whether working on medical instruments or surgical devices, the medical sector brings unique welding requirements which must be taken into consideration. One requirement that separates the medical sector from traditional welding processes is the material used, a range of special metals are used depending on the product’s function. Medical products aim to use metals which have the lowest impact on public health and safety. Welds must be aesthetically pleasing; this will help portray quality. Medical welding also requires the highest standards; it is important to eliminate possible defects which could affect completed parts and assemblies.

Orbital Fabrications provides high-quality orbital and TIG welding services to the medical sector through the production of stainless steel chambers used in endoscopy autoclaves. These pressure chambers adjust temperature and pressure rates to produce high-pressure saturated steam at 121 °C. Equipment is typically kept within the autoclave for 15-20 minutes, this inactivates and removes bacteria, viruses, fungi and spores to reduce the risk of infection. Currently, no species of single-celled organism has been found to be infectious or pose a risk to humans after this sterilisation process.  The stainless steel chambers used in autoclaves require high-quality welding to allow required temperatures and pressures to be obtained.

Orbital Tig welding is vital in the medical industry, the environment the products are used in requires high-quality, crevice-free finishes. In stainless steel welds, pathogenic bacteria can build up within crevices, aiding disease spread and increasing risk of infections. Experienced welders will also ensure products receive an unblemished weld; this ensures a high-quality finish that is not only attractive, but reduces the need for polishing and cleaning. All welds are tested using dye penetrant inspection; this process helps to detect surface breaking flaws such as cracks, porosity, laps and seams. The system uses a penetrant that is allowed to soak into the product and is then removed; a developer is then used which draws any remaining penetrant from flaws. Once a weld has been found to contain no flaws, it is deemed fit for use in the medical sector.

Orbital Fabrications is a Cambridge based fabrications company specialising in orbital welding, specialist welding and the assembly of gas and fluid handling systems. Established in 1988, Orbital Fabrications has gained over 25 years’ experience in services including manual welding, TIG welding and turnkey design, working with a range of customers from the Pharmaceutical, Aerospace, Gas & Oil and Nuclear industries.

Orbital Fabrications is committed to investing in the latest technology and staff training, this ensures its fabrication services meet the highest industry standards. They have recently completed an expansion of its facilities, enabling them to now offer a range of cleanroom services.

For more information on any of Orbital Fabrication’s services, contact us here or call on 01480 464 066.

Orbital Fabrications - Established in 1988