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    Dec Group creates fully automated blood bag handling system for Sanquin

    news-releasesDec Group
    September 30th 2022

    Ecublens, Switzerland: –Materials handling and process specialist Dec Group has successfully implemented a fully automated Blood Bag Processing System (BBPS) at Sanquin, the Netherlands blood supply organization.

    This BBPS unit is unique as it is completely tailor-made with an ergonomic design tailored to the workflow requirements of the blood bag processing unit at Sanquin.

    Fully automated

    The system completely automates previously manually conducted process activities, such as sorting by blood groups and ingredients, sticking labels, scanning codes, etc. This not only speeds up the process, but also avoids potential errors, contamination and damage to donated samples.

    The Dec BBPS solution incorporates a number of unique features that include:

    • Pick & Place of IV infusion bags while pulling the tube tightly for pinching and stripping
    • Tube clamping, folding, and taping
    • Vacuum enabled Pick & Place gripper to handle the bags
    • Scanning for traceability and distribution including interface to customer database

    Process steps

    BBPS comes with loading trolleys and integrates the following steps:

    • Main Conveyor: The Main Transport consists of a belt with horizontal product carriers that hold the blood bags in position and a clamping system that moves the cross tubes at every index to the next stations such as Stripping Station, Sealing Station, and Bundling/Attaching Station.
    • Stripping: the stripping rollers move up and down to make sure that there is no air remaining in the tube.
    • Sealing: The unit’s three sealing heads act progressively to sort batches into six segments that can then be sealed three-stage movement, with sealing one from the end of cross tube towards the blood bag to avoid any build-up of pressure.
    • Bundling & Attaching: segments of the cross tube are folded twice in a horizontal position to form a closed Zig-Zag bundle, held together by a Bundle Holder Clamp. The cross tube bundles are transferred from the bundle clamp to the bundle holds of the attaching clamp that rotates the bundle horizontally on the blood bag. Finally, the bundle is secured by a label.
    • Labelling & Sorting:  A custom printed label with barcode is applied to the blood bag, allowing Sorting Robot to move verified blood bags to the correct bin.

    About Dec Group

    Dec (Dietrich Engineering Consultants) Group is the leading global provider of contained powder handling systems and is recognized as a world-leading expert in process containment technologies. It has been supplying the pharmaceutical, chemical, food and cosmetic industries for more than 35 years.

    ​The depth of Dec’s knowledge and their ability to develop innovative new technologies make them an invaluable partner for both multinationals and specialist organizations.

    ​With true worldwide coverage through subsidiaries in Switzerland, Germany, Great Britain, Ireland, Netherlands, Poland, USA, India, China, its recent acquisition of advanced containment and aseptic solution provider Extract Technology and the latest expansion with the integration of UK based Alconbury Weston Ltd (AWL), leading in flow chemistry solutions as well as agents covering more than 60 countries, the Dec Group provides its customers with unparalleled global expertise and a reliable network for local support.

    To learn more, visit:

    About Sanquin

    Established in 1998 through a merger between the Dutch blood banks and the Central Laboratory of the Netherlands Red Cross Blood Transfusion Service (CLB), Sanquin is the only body in the Netherlands authorized to manage blood and blood products.  It is one of the few organizations in the world to combine medical, diagnostic and scientific aspects of blood transfusion under the same roof.

    With 2,000 committed colleagues and 345,000 blood donors, Sanquin serves some 300,000 patients each year.

    Sanquin is a not-for-profit organisaton that conducts constant research on innovative solutions for medical conditions that cannot yet be treated or treated properly as part of its international effort to improve the quality and usage of blood products worldwide.

    Apart from its Blood Bank, Sanquin also has divisions dealing with Diagnostics, Research,  Reagents and its Sanquin Academy for education and training.

    Learn more at


    Click on Dec Group delivers The world’s first blood bank robot for further information.
    Click on Dec LinkedIn post to watch video on BBPS system.


    True End-to-End Solutions

    Dec Group creates fully automated blood bag handling system for Sanquin

    Dec BBPS robotic sorting of labelled blood bags into consignments at Sanquin.

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