Improving Temperature Stability in Scientific Freezers

The 6.4 cubic foot SA6FManDTMD scientific freezer

The 6.4 cubic foot SA6FManDTMD scientific freezer

Modern scientific freezers are designed to provide researchers with tight temperature control – an essential feature to avoid damage to costly and sometimes irreplaceable samples and specimens.  Most laboratory freezers feature alarm systems that alert personnel should the internal temperature fluctuate above or below that set on the thermostat.  Many models also have door-mounted digital displays showing the temperature of the contents.

A major threat to temperature uniformity is the open scientific freezer door when researchers retrieve or replace samples.  Minimizing the intrusion of ambient air is achieved when the internal cabinet is subdivided into compartments fitted with slide out wire baskets equipped with clear plastic fronts.  While refrigerated air circulates freely throughout the unit only the target basket, not the entire stock, is exposed to ambient air.  This feature is found on the SA6FManDTMD scientific freezer available from Tovatech.  It has an advanced alarming system that sounds if fluctuations occur and activates a top-mounted red high temperature light.  

Tips for Added Temperature Control

The clear plastic-fronted wire drawers aid in identifying contents.  Assigning drawers to specific projects also speeds retrieving and replacing contents.  Affixing identification labels on the outside of the freezer door and on the basket fronts is another good idea.  While it may appear as just another administrative task, the value of lab freezer contents should be an incentive to establish procedures and policies that shorten as much as possible the time scientific freezer doors are open.

Remember too that a full freezer provides better temperature stability.  Use ice packs to fill spaces not occupied by research samples and specimens.   

Contact the scientists at Tovatech for information on the safe storage of valuable products in laboratory freezers and refrigerators, and for recommendations on models that meet your safe storage requirements.

What steps does your organization take to protect freezer and refrigerator contents from temperature fluctuations?

About Rachel Kohn

So how did an MIT Ph.D. end up selling refrigerators? When I figured out that a lot more scientists buy lab refrigerators than innovative leading-edge instruments. I hope that my many years of lab experience will help you find the right equipment for your work. Before co-founding Tovatech I worked in business development and project management at Smiths Detection, Photon-X, Cardinal Health, and Hoechst Celanese. And before that I spent 12 years as an R&D chemist at Hoechst Celanese and Aventis working on advanced drug delivery systems, polymer films and membranes, optical disks, and polysaccharides. Some day, eventually, I’ll make enough money to develop an innovative technology that will change the world. Read More