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Storage Ergonomics - Eppendorf PhysioCare Concept®

Ergonomic designs for freezers are challenging to create: ULT freezers are big and heavy – and you don’t lift them very often. Still, there are ergonomic issues to think about when storing your highly valuable samples in freezer storage boxes and, ultimately, in the freezer.

Kneeling or standing on tiptoe to read the display?

ULT freezers top out at nearly 2 meters. There are lots of ways to install a freezer display, but there’s just one useful position: The control display should be at eye level so you can easily and conveniently read the settings.

Female scientist stands next to an Ultra Low Temperature (ULT) freezer with the control display conveniently at eye level.

Fast re-access to samples needed?

How often have you already faced this situation: You just closed the door of the ULT freezer when you realized that you forgot something? Standard ULT freezers make you wait one to two minutes before you can open them – or you have to force the door open.
The auto-vent port enables easy, fast, and comfortable re-access to the samples by using the automatism function or by pressing the vent-port button to perform the pressure equalization.

Scientist uses the vent-port button of an ultra low temperature freezer to perform the pressure equalization.

Who knows how to…?

Standard labs use a broad range of different instruments. Every instrument has a different kind of interface. Interaction needs to be learned.
Standardized user interfaces make handling of different devices as easy as possible. You know one, you know all.
Equipment touchscreens should provide an intuitive arrangement of all information.

Control display of an ULT freezer which provides an intuitive arrangement of all information.

Busting the freezer door open?

If all you have is a small, twig-sized handle or just a bar or triangle to grab hold of, you need to apply quite some force to get the freezer door open. An ergonomically designed door handle supports you with a good grip for easy opening/ closing processes. Leverage is enhanced by the long shape of the handle.

A man handling the ergonomically designed door handle of an Eppendorf CryoCube ULT freezer.

More crushing than cleaning during de-icing?

Over time, ULT freezers start to build up ice on the walls. Due to easy access to racks and efficient freezing, this ice needs to be removed manually. Many lab workers use standard ice scrappers to remove this snow and ice which can turn into quite a workout because of sticky painted inner walls.
A stainless steel interior enables easy and fast cleaning of the freezer compartment.

The stainless steel interior of an empty lab freezer for easy cleaning.

Dragging the filter out of the holder?

Freezer filters need to be cleaned on a regular basis. Depending on the freezer type, the challenge of this process varies.
Easy filter maintenance means only having to flip down the filter cover to remove the filter for cleaning or replacement.

Easy access to Ultra Low Temperature (ULT) freezer filter compartment.

Annoyed by the loud freezer in your lab?

Many ULT freezers are located in hallways or even in the basement to reduce the excess noise in the lab. But that means having to take a long walk every time you need a sample from the freezer.
Noise reduction of the freezer by air guide plates and smart air channeling at the back of the instrument can result in comfortable working conditions near the ULT freezer.

Lab freezer from behind with smart air channeling that reduces the noise in the laboratory.

Struggling with cables?

Do you have to turn the freezer to the left and right just to get everything plugged in? Even if its supported by wheels, 300 kilograms can get very heavy, very fast …
To make the connectivity as easy as possible, all cable interfaces should be located at one corner to provide a convenient access.
The power supply cable should be secured by a metal frame.

ULT freezer cable interfaces located at one corner to provide a convenient access.

Injuring your fingers at the sharp-edged racks?

By standard, freezer racks are stored within the freezer. In case of a freezer break-down, all racks (incl. the samples) needs to be relocated to the backup freezer. This relocation needs to be done as soon as possible to keep the samples frozen.
Freezer racks should have soft, rounded edges so your gloves and fingers remain intact.

Metal freezer racks designed for ULT lab freezers.