igus UK is launching blue iglidur A350 polymer plain bearings that are FDA-approved for use in the food and drinks industry. Being blue, the new iglidur A350 bearings are both easier to detect - and the FDA approval indicates that they will not harm humans in the event of particles being consumed.
In the UK the contamination of food is illegal under The Food Safety Act 1990, which states: 'It shall be a defence for the person charged to prove that he took all reasonable precautions and exercised all due diligence to avoid the commission of the offence by himself or by a person under his control.'
Matt Aldridge, a Director of igus UK, comments: "The use of a visually detectable product with a colour not naturally found very often in nature is a reasonable precaution. For this reason, blue-coloured products have become the de facto standard; blue-coloured items, ranging from plasters to hair nets, are now widely used in food preparation areas and large-scale mass produced food lines, which is why we have developed a blue range of bearings designed specifically for this industry."
The igus iglidur A350 polymer plain bearing material is FDA-approved, which means that it can be in direct contact with food and, in the unlikely event that particles contaminate food, be ingested without causing harm to the person. Highly wear-resistant, iglidur A350 can handle long-term temperature exposure up to 180degC and is resistant to a variety of chemicals and other liquid media. This makes the blue polymer suitable for applications in the food, packaging and bottle-filling industries that undergo regular cleaning with steam and chemicals. With a low coefficient of friction, the iglidur A350 plain bearings are also corrosion-resistant, and lubrication- and maintenance-free.
Whereas igus has previously supplied white bearings for use in the food industry, the company stresses that the blue iglidur A350 material is not just the white material with a blue dye added; rather it is a completely new development that provides the right combination of properties in terms of friction, wear and strength.
As well as offering a standard range of plain bushings, igus can supply iglidur A350 material in the form of bar stock that can be machined to size.
In common with its other plain bearings, the A350 products have a very predictable life, which can be calculated using the igus QuickLife online service life calculator.
Machine builders working on equipment for the food industry will also be interested in another development from igus, namely metal-detectable blue igubal products, such as clevis joints and rod ends.
Follow the link for more information about igus blue iglidur A350 polymer plain bearings.