User Story - Evergreen Packaging
Name: Kerri Heckrow
Job Title: Corporate NPD Lab Manager
Company: Evergreen Packaging | Waynesville, NC
Kerri Heckrow – Corporate NPD Lab Manager, Evergreen Packaging
Precision brings safety and convenience to the labs of Evergreen Packaging
Evergreen Packaging is a global leading fiber-based packaging and paperboard solutions manufacturer providing customized products that deliver product freshness and brand distinction. In 2014, Evergreen Packaging was recognized by the American Forest & Paper Association as the recipient of the Leadership in Sustainability Award for Sustainable Forest Management for its Certified Success – Evergreen Forest Certification Program.
Kerri Heckrow is the Corporate New Product Development Lab Manager at Evergreen Packaging in Waynesville, North Carolina. Kerri shared with us how Peak’s Precision line of gas generators has helped power their gas chromatography–mass spectrometry testing equipment in a safe and efficient way—while allowing them to expand their testing capabilities and volume.
Typically, what is the focus of your GC analysis - what sort of applications?
“We use our GCs for a couple different things. Sometimes it’s for identifying a foreign substance, for this we use our GC/MS. Other times it is for long-term studies such as process monitoring for degradation of certain chemical compounds, or to monitor the introduction of certain compounds associated with spoilage, or microbial metabolites. We run our GC analysis in a research and development capacity, and sometimes in a quality capacity—so a lot of quantitative and qualitative measurements.”
What Peak Scientific generators do you have in your laboratory and what GC instruments do they supply?
“We have a Precision Hydrogen generator, your 100cc/min model. We use it to fuel our Flame Ionization Detector (FID) on our GC. We also have two Precision Nitrogen generators—with flow rates of 600cc/min and 1L/min. The Precision Nitrogen 600cc/min is used to generate our carrier and make-up gas for our 7890 GC. The 1L/min unit provides the carrier gas for our permeation equipment.
What prompted you to choose a Peak generator and how long have you used them?
“Peak’s generators were really a lifesaver for us! We couldn’t get a GC with a Flame Ionization Detector (FID) in our lab without violating the fire code and company policy for insurance reasons. This is because we aren’t allowed to have Hydrogen cylinders on site, so Agilent recommended that we buy Peak Precision generators.”
What did your previous gas supply solution look like?
“We were buying ultra-high purity Nitrogen cylinders, and still buy Oxygen cylinders as there isn’t an Oxygen generator out there—if you made that we’d buy it! We are not allowed to have Hydrogen cylinders so we didn’t have any of those, and that’s how we came to use Peak’s Precision gas generators.”
What has been the key benefit of deploying our generators in your own experience?
“Firstly, the Precision Hydrogen generator enabled us to get a piece of equipment that we would not otherwise have. The generator was paramount in the purchase of our GC.
In addition to this, a key benefit for us has been the elimination of the safety hazards associated with compressed gas cylinder handling, which is what we consider a line of fire. So if we remove that risk from the equation, that’s the best option for anybody involved in safety. Handling cylinders was big safety concern for us.” Finally, not having to worry about a cylinder emptying during testing is just a dream come true. We can now run tests over the weekend and never have to worry about the system. This increased efficiency for us and that is something you can take to upper management when creating a business case and you will win every time!
How would you describe your experience of dealing with Peak Scientific in terms of purchase and support?
“Your customer service is fantastic—we’ve always received prompt responses. Our Peak sales rep was great—very knowledgeable very polite, very helpful. Everyone’s been very supportive and helpful, that’s why we bought three of your generators.”
Would you recommend Peak Scientific generators to other GC laboratories - and if so, what would be your main reason for the recommendation?
“I would totally recommend Peak generators! I would especially recommend your Precision Hydrogen and Nitrogen generators for so many reasons—but mostly efficiency and safety—safety probably being number one. We now have far less handling of compressed gas cylinders and it’s just cleaner—you’re not connecting and disconnecting the regulators from the cylinders, and you don’t have to bleed out any lines.
For the efficiency it’s really a time thing—you don’t have to handle the generators and push them back and forth and wait on deliveries. You don’t have to rent cylinders. There’s money involved in that—there’s cylinder handling involved, and there’s the time efficiency that this process has an impact on. All of these processes and steps take time—which ultimately takes away from a lab’s productivity.
The generators are clean, and they’re more aesthetically pleasing. Precision generators are probably the most visually appealing generator I’ve seen. It looks cool on the bench, people come into the lab and it’s the first thing they ask about."
Peak’s Precision gas generators, specifically engineered for GC applications, have enabled Evergreen Packaging the ability to include GC for FID testing in their lab while staying within fire and company code requirements. With the introduction of Precision gas solutions, Evergreen was also able to increase safety and efficiency due to minimized handling of compressed gas cylinders in their lab.