Manufacturing safe & reliable products for customers is a key component to any manufacturing organization. Product testing is an important aspect to making sure products operate as they should at time when they are most critical, whether the products are used in defense or for medical purposes. Environmental chambers are used to test the effects of environmental conditions such as temperature, humidity, altitude, and vibration on a variety of products.
Environmental test chambers are invaluable because they are able to artificially replicate the conditions under which machinery, materials, devices or components might be exposed. These chambers are also used to accelerate the effects of exposure to the environment, sometimes at conditions not actually expected, in order to ensure ultimate reliability and safety.
Test chamber conditions may include:
- Extreme temperatures
- Sudden temperature variations
- Electrodynamic vibrations
- Electromagnetic radiation
- Moisture or relative humidity
- Salt spray
- Exposure to sun, causing UV degradation
One case in which test chambers are used to ensure customer safety is in the testing of respirators. An estimated 5 million workers, in over 1.3 million workplaces across the United States, utilize respirators every day, making it imperative for these respirators to be 100% reliable. Respirators protect workers against insufficient oxygen environments as well as harmful gases, dusts, fogs, smokes, mists, vapors, and sprays.
Choosing defective respirators or using one incorrectly in an occupation such as welding can prove to be fatal. Recent studies show that full-time welders are at an extremely high risk for lung function changes, bronchitis, airway irritation, pneumonia, and lung cancer.
New research also suggests there is a correlation between welding fumes and the development of nerve disorders.
In severe welding cases, exposure to metal oxides, gases, vapors, and certain surface coatings among other things can lead to loss of consciousness and death in minutes.
The only thing that can protect welders on a daily basis from toxic atmospheres are effective respirators.
Respirators are not only used in the welding industry, but are essential to ensuring safety across all types of industries.
Hydrogen sulfide (H2S) is one of the main causes of death among gas inhalation-related fatalities in the workplace from 2003-2012. In fact, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics cites 64 fatal occupational injuries as a result of H2S during that time span, all of which could have possibly been prevented with the use of an extremely well-tested respirator suited for the harshest of environments.
In the medical industry, respirators are used to assist patients with their breathing, utilized in air ambulance transfers, and essentially blow a combination of oxygen and air into a patient’s lungs as needed. The malfunction of a respirator in the medical space could also be life threatening.
Whether working in a factory exposed to harsh environments, welding, fighting flames as a firefighter, or using a respirator to breathe in the hospital, one thing is for sure…
Companies want to provide their customers with the most reliable respirators on the market, tested by the most reliable company…
Ensuring Respirator Reliability Through Temperature Chambers:
Cincinnati Sub-Zero (CSZ) offers a full range of standard and custom-designed environmental chambers providing customers with solutions to meet their most demanding environmental testing requirements. These environmental chambers range from small benchtop chambers to full walk-in chambers and rooms.
Environmental test chambers are used to test products by professionals in the automotive, electronics, aerospace, defense, and medical industries among others, and CSZ’s clients who make respirators rely on the chambers to ensure safety and the highest quality of testing available.
CSZ features both an equipment division and a testing division, meaning many companies invest in test chamber equipment for their own in-house testing while others choose to utilize CSZ’s A2LA Accredited test lab which provides contract testing services.
If the customer is performing a one-time test and do not have enough testing to justify a chamber purchase they generally use the CSZ Test Laboratory. CSZ’s clients also use the lab if they need an independent third party validation of the test, for overflow testing if their chambers are full. The chambers are used in R&D testing to develop a new product.
CSZ’s state-of-the-art chambers help test trusted respirator equipment through environmental simulation to ensure products will operate in all conditions including extreme temperatures, humidity, and altitude, such as respirator performance on a plane. Also, tests can be performed on how the product is taken care of, for example whether it is dropped, and how it is transported by performing tests on conditions such as temperature, humidity, and vibration.
Cincinnati Sub Zero has a wide variety of clients, but the common goal is to provide the chambers capable of testing respirators and other products to ensure that they will hold up under any condition and can be relied upon across many different industries.
CSZ’s A2LA Accredited Test Lab Contract Testing Services:
Cincinnati Sub-Zero chambers can simulate respirators being subjected to environmental conditions such as temperature, humidity, altitude, corrosive, shock, and vibration conditions, with testing for each condition being just as strenuous and important as the next.
There are no shortcuts in the testing process as CSZ testing laboratories are outfitted with the most current testing technologies, and are staffed by a team of on-site test technicians who coordinate a tailored, cost-effective solution to meet specific product development needs.
CSZ’s testing equipment includes more than 35 environmental chambers, six vibration tables, and two corrosion chambers. For temperature and humidity tests, the company’s advanced testing chambers accommodate an extreme range from -73 degrees Celsius (-99.4 degrees Fahrenheit) to 190 degrees Celsius (374 degrees Fahrenheit). Altitude testing simulates conditions up to 100,000 feet above sea level (40,000 feet when combined with temperature testing conditions), while thermal shock testing accommodates transferring product between temperature extremes very rapidly (in most cases less than 10 seconds weighing up to 600 pounds.
Upon completion of testing, CSZ delivers a comprehensive data analysis detailing the total product assessment under test conditions. Meticulous, documented reports of all test results are backed by a test certificate and appropriate accreditation.
As you can see, when it comes to safety, satisfying customers, and protecting lives, Cincinnati Sub-Zero doesn’t take any chances.
Everything is tested, in every condition, and all the details are recorded for 100% accuracy and reliability.
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