Aseptic connections are used to connect two tubes while maintaining the sterility of both. This is achieved by connecting the tubes without exposure of product contact parts to the surrounding environment. The AseptiQuik G connector is chosen as standard due to its genderless design.
Aseptic Steam-to Connectors
Aseptic steam-to connectors allow disposable tubing to be attached aseptically to a tri-clamp connector on a stainless steel skid. They also allow a skid to be CIP’d with these connections in place.
The Lynx ST connector and the Steam-Thru connector designs are both included in the SDD™ portfolio.
Non-aseptic connectors do not maintain the sterility of the tubing when they are used to connect two tubes.
The MPC / MPX connector is preferred in purification where an aseptic connection is not required.
The Tri-Clamp connector is used as outlet for the tank liners and powder mixing bags.
The Luer-Lock connector is used for the sampling of 2D bags.
Aseptic Tube Welding
Aseptic tube welding can be used for connecting tubing assemblies at points in the process where the use of aseptic connectors is not cost-effective. This cost / benefit balance is changing with the new generation of aseptic connectors. The technology aseptically welds two lengths of thermoplastic tubing (C-Flex 374) to provide an integral fluid path.
The reduce the amount of SDD™ assembly drawings, the decision is made to use the designs with MPC / MPX connector for aseptic tube welding also. This is decided because the MPC / MPX is economical enough to allow disposability.
Pros and Cons of the various connection methods
Aseptic Tube Welding vs. Aseptic Connectors
Aseptic connectors have the following advantages over aseptic tube welding.
- It can be used ‘at height’ or in confined spaces where it would be difficult to get a welding device.
- It is faster.
- It does not have the hardware costs of the welding device.
- It provides the same level of aseptic protection as a welder.
Aseptic connectors have the following disadvantages compared with aseptic tube welding.
- It can be more expensive if large numbers are used per year. A cost / benefit analysis is needed by the end-user.
Non-aseptic Connectors vs. Aseptic Connectors
Aseptic connectors have the following advantages over non-aseptic connectors.
- Non-aseptic connectors are an ‘open’ connection and not aseptic.
Aseptic connectors have the following disadvantages over non-aseptic connectors.
- They are more expensive.
- The can not be disconnected.
- They are larger and more complex.