Freudenberg secures increased order for portable insulin pump seals

Freudenberg Sealing Technologies has entered into a new purchase agreement for seals for portable insulin pumps with the Swiss medical technology specialist Ypsomed that significantly exceeds the previous order volume.

© Freudenberg Sealing Technologies 2024

The two companies have been collaborating since 2012.

“When the project started, Ypsomed expected a much lower number of seals per year. We have now concluded a two-year purchase contract with a much higher order quantity,” said Peter Rohrer, sales engineer at Freudenberg Sealing Technologies in Switzerland.

Patients with type 1 diabetes depend on a constant supply of insulin. Portable insulin pumps continuously deliver precise doses of the vital hormone into the body, keeping the patient’s metabolism in balance.

The mylife YpsoPump from Ypsomed only weighs 83 grams – including battery and full insulin cartridge – and is only 16 millimeters high. Freudenberg Sealing Technologies developed a dedicated rod seal for this purpose several years ago. “The challenge was to combine a high level of tightness with minimal friction,” explained Patrick Kinsch, Product Developer in the Fluid Power Industry lead center at Freudenberg Sealing Technologies.

The pump is controlled based on the patient’s blood glucose level, which is measured separately. The comparison between the target and actual levels follows various parameters that are determined inside the pump itself, mainly via a force measurement in the drive system. For reliable measurement – and therefore precise control of the pump and insulin dosage – it is extremely important to have as little friction as possible in the drive system.

To meet this challenge, Freudenberg Sealing Technologies developed a suitable combination of a high-performance rod seal with a friction-optimized seal lip and surface; the specially matched lubricant is made by affiliated company Klüber Lubrication. At the same time, a nanotechnology procedure lowers not only the roughness but also the friction of the elastomer. The seals enable a very consistent torque curve. The rod seal also protects the system from contamination when the insulin cartridge is changed and seals the motor against leaking insulin in case the cartridge accidentally breaks.

“With this seal, we developed the optimum solution for the portable insulin pump from Ypsomed. We’re delighted that this is now reflected in a significantly increased purchase volume,” added Rohrer.