Cryogenic Sample Tracking

Posted March 26, 2012

Industry Need

Modern life sciences commonly require long term preservation of biological material; cryogenic processing and storage provides a means to this end. With a large quantity of small samples in storage, accurate tracking is critical. Barcoded labels (with linear or 2D symbols) are the preferred method, but the extreme environmental stresses can cause failure with standard media.

Cryogenic conditions have become commonplace in multiple applications, ranging from pharmaceutical processing to lyophilization of vaccines. Cryopreservation of tissues and cell suspensions in small vials provides its own set of challenges, requiring conformability to small diameter surfaces and adhesion to low surface energy plastics such as polypropylene and polyethylene. Increasingly common cryogenic shipping of vaccines, tissues, and medicines in liquid nitrogen with temperatures as low as -112°F /-80°C now subjects a greater range of barcoded items to these stresses.

Intermec Solution

Intermec Duratran II Gloss Polypropylene labels deliver reliable performance through the wide range of conditions commonly encountered in cryogenic tracking applications. The aggressive adhesive develops a strong bond with polypropylene and polyethylene vials as well as less challenging plastics, glass, and steel. The highly flexible facesheet provides excellent conformability to small diameter 1 mL vials, ensuring that labels do not flag or peel even after multiple freeze and thaw cycles. The thin profile of these labels ensures compatibility with standard storage racks and automated processing.

Printed with the Intermec TMX3000 series ribbon, bar codes and human readable text have excellent abrasion durability, providing superior readability through extensive manual and automated handling and centrifugation. The rugged label system offers excellent moisture resistance for water bath processing. Printed images survive typical contact with common lab solvents and cryoprotectants such as DMSO (dimethyl sulfoxide).

Media Products

Duratran II Gloss Polypropylene


TMX3000 series resin


PM4i Mid Range Printer

  • Smart – Powerful smart-printing capabilities enable error-proof labeling and can simplify processes; all-in-one printer language abilities for drop-in simplicity
  • Strong – Superior throughput, designed to excel in demanding environments
  • Secure – Industry leading, advanced and secure network connectivity options

PC43t Desktop Printer

  • Intuitive – Super Easy to Install & Use
    • 10-language LCD or Icon graphics user interface maximizes uptime
    • One hand media loading for trouble-free use
    • Fastest throughput in its class at 8 ips
    • Quick configuration with USB stick device
  • Flexible – Fits your business needs today & tomorrow
    • User installable connectivity upgrades and accessories for scalability
    • Leading command languages for seamless deployment
    • Modular IT-friendly design speeds up deployment and support
  • Smart – Keeps you informed & productive
    • Remote status updates with Intermec tools minimize downtime
    • Programmable with ability to directly add keyboard or scale improves efficiency

The Intermec Advantage

In mission-critical life science tracking applications, the labeling system must operate flawlessly. Intermec printers and media are optimized to deliver superior performance when used together. Our rigorous testing and co-engineering ensures consistently high print quality, proven label and tag performance in demanding real-world environments, and maximum print head service life for reduced downtime.

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