An ethylene oxide sterilizer is a device specifically used for sterilizing medical instruments, pharmaceutical packaging, food, cosmetics, and other products. It utilizes ethylene oxide gas to kill microorganisms, including bacteria, fungi, spores, and viruses, to ensure that the products are sterile, meeting the hygiene and safety requirements of industries such as healthcare, pharmaceuticals, food, and cosmetics.
An ethylene oxide sterilizer typically includes the following basic components and steps:
1. Sterilization chamber: This is a sealed chamber that holds the items to be sterilized, designed to prevent leakage of ethylene oxide gas.
2. Ethylene oxide supply system: This includes gas storage tanks, gas delivery pipelines, and control valves used to introduce ethylene oxide gas into the sterilization chamber.
3. Humidification system: Ethylene oxide sterilization usually requires a certain level of humidity, so a humidification system is used to maintain the appropriate humidity.
4. Heating system: The heating system is used to raise the temperature to promote the evaporation and diffusion of ethylene oxide.
5. Ethylene oxide sensors and monitoring systems: These are used to monitor the concentration of ethylene oxide gas and temperature to ensure control and safety during the sterilization process.
6. Sterilization cycle control: Operators can set parameters such as sterilization time, temperature, humidity, and gas concentration to meet the requirements of different products.
7. Ventilation system: After sterilization is complete, a ventilation system is needed to remove residual ethylene oxide gas to ensure product safety.
Ethylene oxide sterilization is typically used in industrial and manufacturing settings because it efficiently kills various microorganisms without causing thermal or moisture damage to the products. However, the use of ethylene oxide sterilization requires strict control to ensure the safety of operators and the environment, as ethylene oxide is a flammable and toxic gas.