High-performance rod seal for portable insulin pumps

Siobhan Doyle

Advances in sealing mechanisms allow for greater efficiency within portable insulin pumps.

Patients with Type 1 diabetes rely on a continuous supply of insulin to manage their condition. Thanks to portable insulin pumps, they can lead active and mobile lives while ensuring their metabolic balance. These pumps deliver precise doses of insulin into the body, maintaining the patient’s health and wellbeing.

Indeed, Type 1 diabetics entrust their lives to insulin pumps. That is why the importance of reliable sealing mechanisms within these devices cannot be overstated. Freudenberg Sealing Technologies has recently expanded its collaboration with Swiss medical technology specialist Ypsomed through a new purchase agreement for seals. This agreement represents a significant increase in order volume, underscoring Freudenberg Sealing Technologies’ expertise in the medical technology field.

“When the project began, Ypsomed anticipated a much lower demand for seals per year. However, we have now finalised a two-year purchase contract with higher order quantities,” Peter Rohrer, Sales Engineer at Freudenberg Sealing Technologies in Switzerland. This collaboration with Ypsomed, which started in 2012, highlights the company’s experience as a developer and manufacturer of injection and infusion systems for self-medication, particularly in diabetes care.

The seal solution

The mylife YpsoPump from Ypsomed is a lightweight device, weighing only 83g and standing at 16mm tall, including the battery and a full insulin cartridge. Several years ago, Freudenberg Sealing Technologies developed a rod seal for this pump to address the challenge of achieving high impermeability with minimal friction. “The pump’s operation relies on precise control based on the patient’s blood glucose level, necessitating minimal friction in the drive system,” explains Patrick Kinsch, Product Developer at Freudenberg Sealing Technologies.

To meet this challenge, Freudenberg Sealing Technologies devised a high-performance rod seal with a friction-optimised seal lip and surface, complemented by a specially formulated lubricant from its affiliate Klüber Lubrication. Additionally, nanotechnology processes were employed to reduce elastomer roughness and friction further.

The advantages

According to the company, these innovations ensure a very consistent torque curve, while the rod seal protects the system from contamination during insulin cartridge changes and seals the motor against leaking insulin if the cartridge accidentally breaks.

Rohrer expresses satisfaction, stating: “With this seal, we have delivered the optimal solution for Ypsomed’s portable insulin pump, resulting in a significantly increased purchase volume.”

Freudenberg Sealing Technologies has been a trusted development partner and supplier in the medical device market for decades, and is committed to innovation, efficiency, and delivering high-quality, cost-effective solutions.

Recent Issues