Rodwell Scientific Instruments made the trip from Great Britain to Germany for the 2009 ACHEMA show in May. The company was one of over a dozen presenters specializing in medical and laboratory sterilizers. What sets this manufacturer apart is the Rodwell “Pneu-valve” system offered on all their vacuum autoclaves.

The Pneu-valve technology is designed to offer a 100% leak proof seal. This allows the unit to create an almost complete vacuum (over -.8 bar). For porous loads such as those containing surgical linens, having a high level of negative pressure is essential. Steam and heat can penetrate throughout the entire load under such conditions. This ensures complete sterilization with no cool spots in the chamber.

Rodwell advertises this valve as tough and reliable. It can overcome buildup on its surface by simply crushing debris and scaling out of the way as it closes. This way, the seal is maintained intact. Of course, appropriate inspection and maintenance steps should be taken to minimize valve contamination in the first place. The Pneu-valve is bi-directional so it can withstand vacuum and positive pressure from either side without leaking. This manufacturer offers its Crystal, Sapphire, and Ambassador models with this technology.

Heavy duty steam generators and accessories are also available for purchase. The specifications for these steam systems guarantee a sufficient level of steam pressure for sterilization and load drying. Maintaining the correct pressure and volume (up to 4 bar) produces the desired decontamination result. The manufacturer is banking on clients realizing a quick return on investment by using these high quality systems. Reducing the number of loads that must be re-sterilized due to system inadequacies would certainly save time and money.


This autoclave comes in sizes ranging from 200-300 liters. It can be configured with an under-chamber steam generator or hooked up to an external source. Optional accessories include a loading trolley and baskets or trays for ease of use. Scale prevention and waste discard systems can be added to reduce the hassles of maintenance. The 300 liter version can be fitted with double doors upon request.


The Sapphire is available in capacities up to 770 liters. Rather than having a pneumatic door sealing mechanism, it offers a simplified hoist and clamp arrangement. This automated door is designed to work just as well as more complex closing systems. Rodwell assures the consumer that this is not a “cheap” machine when it comes to quality and that it will pay for itself quickly. Air ballasting and pre/post vacuum cycles are available on some Sapphire models.


This is one of the manufacturer’s mid-sized sterilizers at a maximum of 158 liters. The Ambassador features Rodwell’s MP 25 controller. This computer system is fully interchangeable and can work with any autoclave the company offers. It can be programmed with 25 different cycles including those that require delayed start and free steaming adjustments.

Whether you are looking for a high quality autoclave that will generate cost savings over time or need a sterilization solution that fits a limited budget, our free report can help you make a wise decision.