The company Dresdner Kühlanlagenbau is talented in expanding its portfolio. Blood plasma cooling proves to be a flourishing business sector. An article contributed by Dr. Mathias Schirmer managing director of Kühlanlagenbau Süd Ost GmbH.
At the time when Dresdner Kühlanlagenbau GmbH (DKA) was forced to face the realities of the market economy after reunification, our company was able to look back on 40 years of broad experience in the area of commercial cooling. On the other hand, areas like refrigeration technology were, rather underdeveloped. The diversification of the business sectors was therefore one of the most important and one of the first areas we tackled in order to maintain and expand our position under the new market economy conditions. We particularly wanted to expand our portfolio in the field of air conditioning technology and special industrial applications to take advantage of the potential opened up by these fields of business and increase the volume of our business. The concept paid off. Diversifying made us much more independent of the market fluctuations. Today, the wide range of services is one of the greatest strengths of Dresdner Kühlanlagenbau. With this in mind, Dresdner Kühlanlagenbau has been working intensively for the last ten years to capture the market for so-called special industrial applications. More than 100 engineers and technicians contribute their experience and ideas. Today, we would like to provide some insight into the small, but interesting blood plasma storage business activities. A small team from our Leipzig/Halle sales and service office has developed itself into a specialised unit for the topic of „cooling engineering in medical applications“. Thomas Neumann heads the group and is supported in technical planning aspects by Alexander Stein. In the mean time, the special unit has an expert installation team available – more or less worldwide.
So what does the „Cooling engineering in medical applications“ unit actually do? The first project dealt with cleanroom cooling capacities in the vaccine factory Impfstoffwerk-Dessau-Tornau. However, the most frequent projects are the construction of so-called blood plasma stores and blood plasma freezing units. Blood plasma is a basic ingredient for manufacturing medicines. The plasma, which is harvested directly via plasmapheresis or separated from a whole blood donation, has to be frozen down to -30°C in a maximum of 60 minutes, depending on the application. The challenge for deep freezing engineering when products have to be frozen and stored at temperatures from -30 to -50°C is combining the specific qualitative product requirements with the logistical requirements determined by local circumstances. These projects involve both cooling engineering and providing a solution for the storing logistics. Together with a smaller partner company, which manufactures stainless steel products, we developed blocks of draws where the extension rails do not freeze up. This means that the medical personnel do not actually have to go into the low-temperature rooms to collect a bag of blood plasma. The drawers can be operated from the pre-cooling room, which is a great improvement in working conditions. The export markets are especially interesting for this specialization. When we received our first contract from Chanty-Mansijsk, a town around four hours by plane to the east of Moscow, we thought it was just by chance. Now we are looking forward to our tenth Russian contract. Additionally, several projects are still in the offer phase. Our best reference is in Moscow and is frequently used for training purposes. Initially, we never heard of towns like Saratov, Omutninsk or Kotelnich, but now they are equipped with our technical systems.
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