Sanitary Hose Assemblies for Biopharm Solutions: Silicone vs PTFE Material
Most pharmaceutical process operations utilize sanitary hose assemblies, including load cell isolators, portable tank hookups, CIP jumpers, and a number of other applications. The majority of pharmaceutical sanitary hose assemblies must meet strict standards including autoclavability, steam sterilization, and USP Class VI materials requirements. Despite the fact that most hose materials already comply with FDA regulations, only two materials—smooth bore PTFE, also known as Teflon, and platinum-cured silicone—meet the more rigorous standards of pharmaceutical applications. Your application and objectives for your hose assembly will determine which of these two materials to choose.
Properties: Platinum Cured Silicone
- High flexibility
- Sizes range from ¼” to 4”
- Sizes from ¼” – 1” are available with braid reinforcement
- 4 ply hoses from ½” – 4” are mandrel wrapped and cloth reinforced with a wire helix
- Silicone hoses have minimal tensile strength – the braided material only stretches a limited amount
- Limited chemical resistance – silicone is not compatible with many solvents
- Not suited for high pressures
- Somewhat gas permeable
Silicone or PTFE: Which is the Better Hose Choice?
You should choose between these two hose material selections based on the hose’s intended use. For applications involving pressures greater than 100 PSI, PTFE hoses are chosen since the price difference between the two is not very substantial. As an alternative, silicone works well for thin, flexible items like brief load cell jumpers. For applications that constantly involve steam, conductive PTFE hoses are recommended. Although heavier, PTFE material will hold up better for a hose assembly that is being connected and disconnected routinely. Because there are a multitude of applications for hose assemblies, you must consider a number of factors before deciding on the best hose material for you. Keep the following questions in mind while researching:
- What is the product?
- What is the process temperature?
- How is the hose going to be used?
- What is the process pressure?
- How are you going to clean the hose?
- What is the cleaning temperature and pressure?
If you are still unsure about the type of hose material to use in your processing equipment, please get in touch with a Sales Representative at COMPANY by calling PHONE or send an email to EMAIL.