The laboratory on top of the world

Mocon installs permeation units in testing lab in Tibet, nearly 3,500m above sea level

With the Himalayas as a backdrop, laboratory officials and Mocon representatives stand outside the Lhasa, Tibet testing facility

Mocon, a US provider of instrumentation and laboratory services to the pharmaceutical industry, has installed oxygen and water vapour permeation units in a pharmaceutical testing laboratory in Lhasa, Tibet.

Located at 3,490m above sea level, this is Mocon’s highest altitude installation. The units will be used to measure package permeation for traditional Tibetan herbal remedies and conventional pharmaceuticals.

The Lhasa laboratory has installed a Mocon Ox-Tran 2/21 ML and a Permatran-W Model 3/33 MG Plus unit. Both test permeation of either flat materials or finished packages/devices such as vials, pouches, bottles, blister cavities and syringes. However, in Lhasa, they will be used primarily for high barrier testing of packaging structures with either aluminum foil or metallised layers.

The Ox-Tran 2/21 system also features barometric pressure compensation, which ‘normalises’ the test results to sea level to ensure uniform test results worldwide, regardless of altitude or weather conditions. It also uses a patented Coulox coulometric sensor to detect oxygen transmission. Mocon says it provides parts-per-billion sensitivity even in the presence of water vapour.

The Permatran-W Model MG 3/33 Plus offers automatic relative humidity (RH) capability. Its software interface enables the instrument to achieve accurate and precise relative humidity conditions simply and quickly.

The installation is part of an order received from China’s State Food & Drug Administration (SFDA) to supply 20 provincial pharmaceutical testing centres with oxygen and water vapour permeation units.

Mocon established an office, laboratory and service centre in Shanghai in 2007 to provide permeation technology for growing economies in the Asia-Pacific region.

Mocon’s agent, Danbell Equipment Company, Beijing, also supports the company in the region.

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