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Lin adds that the transfer hatches include reliable mechanical interlocks designed without parts that could fail.
The hatches maintain a physical barrier between a cleanroom and the external environment. The devices permit material transfer without requiring personnel to enter a cleanroom, thus protecting the external environment from contamination. The units are suitable for pharmaceutical cleanrooms as well as biological safety laboratories.
A piezoelectric crystal vibrates two tines of the switch's sensing element at their resonant frequency. When material touches the tines, it dampens the signal and activates a relay. The relay can be used to turn a filling cycle off or on.
Evans says the unit can be installed easily at the top or bottom of a process tank or silo. Operators can rotate the switch's head without affecting its conduit connection. An integral version of the switch contains the electronics and probe in one unit. Users can choose to install the unit's display in another location.