Sunday, January 22, 2012

A Clean Sweep: Cleanroom Moisture Monitoring

Have you ever seen some of the amazing images produced by the Hubble Telescope? Browsing through them, it’s hard to believe that it actually went into orbit with a defect, and for a time, did not perform as intended. But it’s true  – and that defect was caused by a particle less than 1/200 the width of a human hair. How is that possible? The circuitry used to produce such an advanced piece of equipment as the Hubble is, as you might expect, very delicate and precise. PCBs and wiring of that nature – finely-tuned, yet able to withstand the harsh demands of space – need to be developed in an environment that allows them to work exactly as intended, free of any variables like dust, moisture, or other tiny particles. Cleanrooms provide just that type of environment.

There are many factors that go into creating and maintaining a cleanroom environment (and there are many different levels of cleanroom environments, which you can learn more about here): filtration and design are among the most important, and so is monitoring. Without moisture monitoring, any potential breach of the cleanroom environment would not be discovered until later inspection or testing – or potentially not at all. As mentioned in our previous blog on pharmaceutical production, such contaminants can lead to dangerous products. In the case of things like the Hubble and other technical products, contamination can lead to downtime and deficiency costs in the billions or trillions of dollars.

For more information on Devar’s line of moisture monitors and other monitoring products, be sure to visit our website at!

Monday, January 16, 2012

Watch the Monitor: Pharmaceutical Humidity Transmitters

Have you ever spent hours writing a long email or report, only to lose some or all of your work thanks to a mistake on your part – forgetting to hit “Save” – or something beyond your control, like a power outage or computer malfunction? Unfortunately, most of us can share a tale or two like this. On the plus side, it’s mostly a time investment that we’re losing, as opposed to a financial one. For pharmaceutical manufacturers of highly refined compounds and medicines, though, it’s an issue of both money and time – lots of each – to lose a batch of product. One of the most common causes of such an occurrence? Believe it or not, it’s a change in humidity.

That’s right, a humidity shift as small as 0.5% – that’s one-half of a percentage point – can make all the difference in whether a run of, say, aspirin can be shipped out, or tossed out. The chemical compounds involved in manufacturing products like these react differently in different environments, and can become ineffective – or downright dangerous. Obviously, the utmost care must be taken with medicine products like this, which is why the standards are so rigorous, and why humidity monitors are so important to the industry. When miniscule shifts are noticed, corrective measures can be started to ensure that safe ranges are maintained. Also, it lets the operator know if the unfortunate event of a mishandled batch does occur, allowing the manufacturer itself to take the proper disposal measures.

For more information on our precision monitoring products, visit Devar’s full site today!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Get to the Chopper: Humidity Monitors in Helicopter Manufacturing

There’s no denying it: here at Devar, we get to see some fascinating uses of our products. Since humidity and temperature monitoring are so critical to so many intricate manufacturing processes, our indicators are used in lots of interesting and cutting-edge applications. In this case, though, “cutting-edge” means a little more than just “innovative.” A major helicopter manufacturer has, over the past several years, used Devar as the main source for humidity monitors for testing helicopters and helicopter components under all types of simulated weather conditions.

Think of one of the primary uses of helicopters – for most people, the military is what first comes to mind. In climates from arid deserts to soggy jungles, these finely tuned machines need to be able to operate reliably and safely, keeping their crews and passengers secure and well-protected. Of course, equipment can’t be tested first-hand in every type of environment where it might be used. This is where Devar comes in. Our monitors allow testing personnel to easily simulate all types of situations with ease and precision, with accuracy to within 3% relative humidity. Whether heavy rain or the driest heat, our monitors allow helicopter engineers to send their products out into the world with the utmost confidence that they can stand up to the harshest conditions.