Here at PI, we’ve told you that thin is in for the packaging world. However, thin gauge packaging must adhere to a few key considerations. The packaging gauge must be strong enough to keep products protected from impact and the distribution process, as well as maintain the functionality of equipment in end markets. So, how exactly can you determine the thickness that your product’s packaging gauge should be? Follow along with our guide to learn more.
Sterilization is an important component for packaging, especially in industries, such as the medical field, that cannot risk the introduction or inclusion of outside contaminants. However, sterilization can be an intensive process, and if plastic packages are not composed of the appropriate materials—and in the appropriate thickness—they may become weakened during the sterilization process and ultimately compromise the strength and safety of packaging. To avoid packaging failure during sterilization procedures, your packaging team can select a customized solution of plastic substrates, as well as a design, for your product’s packaging.
Additionally, packaging for some products may need to be processed in a ISO Class 8 clean room facilities complete with a positive pressure HVAC system, proprietary trimming and 100 percent traceability from the beginning to end of the creation process to ensure no outside contaminants are introduced when specialists package products.
For some products, the shipping process may require alternative methods for transporting products—such as by airplane—either because of time constraints or because of longer travel distances. Products that will be shipped through air freight services will need a packaging design that can withstand varying levels of air pressure that they will incur during the flight. Without a carefully planned packaging designed for air travel, the shifts in pressure could irreversibly damage products. If you know you will be shipping your products by air freight—or could be in the near future—ask your plastic manufacturer to develop a design that complies with aircraft shipping regulations.
To hold up during the shipping process, be it by vehicle or plane, packaging must have high levels of impact strength to maintain product safety and integrity. Some products may require a thicker gauge packaging design to withstand challenges during distribution. Your packaging company may need to run various tests to examine the strength of your package’s gauge to determine if it is appropriate for your products.
Part Functionality in Equipment
Similarly, packaging needs to have high levels of impact strength to ensure products function as needed. For medical parts, this is especially crucial. Parts need to arrive to a hospital or other medical facility in the same condition as when they were sent to ensure the safety of the product in which they will be used. To provide the appropriate safeguarding, parts need to be packaged in a high-quality thermoformed design created specifically to their dimensions.
Get in touch with the PI team to learn more about the importance of minimum thickness for packaging designs.