WEB EXCLUSIVE: A 50% glass-filled Ixef polyarylamide (PARA, also known as MXD6 nylon) from Solvay Specialty Polymers USA, LLC, Alpharetta, Ga., delivers the high strength, rigidity, moldability, and ultra-smooth finish needed to replace stainless steel in new, single-use surgical devices.

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WEB EXCLUSIVE: A 50% glass-filled Ixef polyarylamide (PARA, also known as MXD6 nylon) from Solvay Specialty Polymers USA, LLC, Alpharetta, Ga., delivers the high strength, rigidity, moldability, and ultra-smooth finish needed to replace stainless steel in new, single-use surgical devices for minimally invasive cardiac surgery developed and manufactured by Miami-based Biorep Technologies for Miami Instruments LLC.

The tip of the Miami Instruments’ Joseph Lamelas Knot Pusher and the visor support bracket and S-blade of the Joseph Lamelas Atrial Lift System are made of Ixef 1022, which boasts strength and rigidity similar to stainless steel. The molded black parts reportedly minimize light reflectivity for the surgeon. Also, these disposable parts can be sterilized once with gamma radiation without any significant change in appearance or loss of mechanical properties, eliminating the cost of repeated steam sterilization of reusable instruments. The molded parts allow Biorep to eliminate machining and realize a major cost reduction over stainless steel.

Biorep selected Ixef PARA over 30% glass-filled LCP and 30% carbon-filled PEEK due to its higher rigidity and lower processing temperature of (500 F). The high-flow resin can also readily fill walls as thin as 0.02 in., even with glass loadings as high as 60%. The hook-like tip on the Knot Pusher is 0.2 in. wide and 0.5 in. long. The atrial lift retractor’s Visor support bracket (0.14 in. wide x 0.45 in. long) and S-Blade (1.4 in. wide x 0.5 in. long) are joined by solvent bonding or can be ultrasonically welded.