How to Select an Ultra Low Temperature Freezer

Ultra low temperature freezers generally operate between user-set ranges from -40⁰C to -86⁰C whereas models described as low temperature laboratory freezers can be set from -10⁰C to -40⁰C, depending on make and model.  Ultra low freezers such as the Norlake Ultra-Low Select models available from Tovatech are used to support product protection and performance testing across a range of life science and manufacturing operations.   Available in 19, 23.2 and 27.5 cubic foot capacities, the Nor-Lake models are ideal for applications such as preserving rare or costly biological specimens and testing equipment that must perform reliably under conditions of severe cold to -86⁰C.

Spec Tips for Ultra Low Temp Freezers

Keep in mind that the lower you set the thermostat on an ultra low temperature freezer the more energy it consumes to maintain that temperature.   Match the temperature capability to storage or environmental testing recommendations.  Norlake Ultra-Low Select upright freezers allow … Read the rest

Improving Temperature Stability in Scientific Freezers

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 … Read the rest

Selection Tips for a -40˚C Lab Freezer

Laboratory freezers and scientific freezers play an important role in product protection and testing.  This applies to the healthcare/pharmaceutical industry and for testing mechanical components under extreme cold temperature conditions.  Lab freezers are manufactured to operate most efficiently at specific temperatures required by research and product development personnel.

Selecting the correct scientific freezer temperature depends on several factors including government, professional association and industry standards.  That’s why Tovatech offers a wide variety of low temperature freezers such as the Nor-Lake Premier -40˚C model.

Temperatures, Costs and other Lab Freezer Specification Factors  

While “freezing” suggests 0˚C (32˚F) specifications may require much lower temperatures.  Units are designed to maintain the required temperature in the most efficient manner. The Norlake Premier NSXF221 low temperature laboratory freezer, for example, is factory set to -40˚C although operators can control settings from -30˚C.  Keep in mind that the colder the capability the more costly the freezer, … Read the rest

Understanding Temperature Cycling

A Nor-Lake Premier auto-defrost 2-door lab refrigerator
A Nor-Lake Premier auto-defrost 2-door lab refrigerator

Setting and maintaining precise temperatures in lab refrigerators and lab freezers is crucial if your research or manufacturing facility subscribes to cGLP and cGMP.  Costly pharmaceuticals and vaccines can quickly be compromised if laboratory refrigerators and laboratory freezers are not carefully monitored.  A key area of concern is temperature cycling during defrosting cycles in these storage units and how this must be accommodated by established standard operating procedures in your facility.

Defrosting Described

Defrosting by definition indicates a temperature fluctuation, whether in a lab freezer or lab refrigerator.  Defrosting cycles can be manual (manual defrost) or automatic (auto-defrost).

A manual defrost freezer functions by circulating refrigerant in the walls of the unit.  Products stored next to the walls will likely be colder than products stored toward the middle.  This temperature gradient should be taken into account in your standard operating … Read the rest

Dual-Compressor Lab Refrigerator-Freezer

The CP171TOV-MED laboratory refrigerator/freezer

Research labs, healthcare facilities and similar organizations faced with limited storage capabilities for drugs, vaccines and other valuable perishables can solve the problem with a 2-foot square x 79-inch high combination scientific refrigerator-freezer with separate compartments each with its own door, temperature control and compressor.

The combination CP171TOV-MED medical refrigerator/freezer available from Tovatech has approximately 7.2 cubic feet of refrigerator space and 3.6 cubic feet of freezer space, each compartment with its own digital thermostat and high/low temperature alarm.  The upper auto-defrost refrigerator has a temperature range of 2 – 8˚C (35.6 – 46.4˚F) and is equipped with three adjustable wire shelves, two crispers and door-mounted shelves.  The lower manual-defrost freezer unit has a temperature range of -15 to – 18˚C (5 to -.4˚F) and is equipped with three transparent slide out drawers that help maintain temperature stability.  The unit’s doors are reversible to open left to right or right … Read the rest

Portable Refrigerator/Freezer for EMS Applications

The SPR-FT26 Portable Refrigerator-Freezer Unit

EMS and other first responder personnel working in areas suffering extended power outages can maintain medical supplies requiring refrigeration by using the compact, portable SPR-FT26 portable refrigerator/freezer unit from Tovatech.

Power is supplied from the EMS vehicle’s 12-volt DC lighter socket, a 24-volt battery source or from an AC adapter connected to 110-volt emergency generators. A wheeled travel trolley is provided to facilitate on-ground transport.Weighing less than 30 pounds the lock-equipped SPR-FT26 portable freezer/refrigerator has a capacity of 20 liters or 0.7 cubic feet and an overall size of 17”h x 21.25”w x 14.25”d.  It functions either as a refrigerator or a freezer thanks to an advanced refrigeration unit and computerized digital control system.   The unit will freeze below -18˚C in an ambient temperature of 30˚C or be set to operate as a portable refrigerator or cooler.  Personnel using the unit should confirm that the cooling or freezing temperatures are … Read the rest

How to Choose an Enzyme Storage Lab Freezer

Enzymes are the catalysts of the biochemical reactions that comprise metabolism; they do their job without changing themselves in the process.    Enzymes are responsible for bringing about almost all of the chemical reactions in living organisms. Without enzymes, these reactions take place at a rate far too slow for the pace of metabolism.*

Enzymes being studied by researchers must be stored in a enzyme freezer at temperatures in the region of -10 to -25˚C (+14 to -13˚F).  When stored at higher temperatures enzymes gradually denature and lose catalytic activity.  Proper storage conditions are essential to ensure that the enzymatic activity on the label is indeed the activity inside the bottle.   I have many not so fond memories of failed experiments in graduate school because the rather costly purified enzyme suspensions failed to perform as expected, all due to inadequate storage.… Read the rest

Primer on Laboratory Refrigerator & Equipment Validation

A controlled environment is critical to maintaining the potency and safety of pharmaceutical products across a supply chain stretching between R&D laboratories, manufacturing facilities, transportation and storage at healthcare facilities.  Examples of controlled environments include laboratory refrigerators, laboratory freezers, blood bank refrigerators, chromatography refrigerators, laboratory incubators, stability chambers and temperature test chambers.

Equipment such as this as manufactured by Norlake Scientific and offered by Tovatech is designed and constructed to comply with standards developed and promulgated by the FDA, the AABB, the Red Cross and other agencies.  Once the equipment is purchased, however, the facility operator assumes the responsibility of assuring it is installed and maintained according to FDA and related guidelines.… Read the rest