For the storage of samples there needs to be a clear system to document which sample is in which storage tube and rack. Several options may apply for this. You can label each tube with a handwritten or printed numerical code or you can work with standard 1D barcodes on the rack. Another option is a laser-etched 2D Data-Matrix code on the bottom of the tube. This code option promotes an automated workflow and posesses infinite possibilities making it the number one choice to identify samples.
In some cases more ‘uniqueness’ in a code is needed. Certain sample groups need to be separated or samples from multiple sites come in and lab workers need to differentiate their own samples from samples of their colleagues. This can be done by using different cap colors or give tubes an additional label, however this is often prone to (human) error. Written text cannot be read, a label can wear or fall off, or a wrong cap can be capped on the tube causing confusion. For this reason Micronic offers the possibility to customize 1D rack barcodes or 2D Data-Matrix tube codes. What options are possible and how can you easily distinguish your samples?
The first option is to customize the 1D barcode on a sample storage rack. This code is not sample specific but it identifies the storage rack itself. The standard 1D barcode has 10 digits. Micronic offers the possibility to choose a custom prefix of 3 digits (alphanumerical). The following 7 digits are predefined by Micronic to guarantee uniquess of the code. With this customization the traceability is improved and they can easily be distinguished between groups of samples in a single rack. Of course, it is also possible to make a distinction on a sample level, for that Micronic offers a customization option of the 2D Data-Matrix code on the tube.
With a 2D Data-Matrix code on the tube bottom there are even more possibilities for unique codes. Single samples can be identified or several samples can be grouped together. By customizing the code, fast tracking and tracing of single samples or a group of samples is guaranteed. That is why Micronic also offers the possibility to customize the 2D Data-Matrix code on the tube bottom. All customized 2D Data-Matrix codes have a 14×14 symbol size. For the 48-well and 24-well format it is even possible to add a human readable code around the 2D Data-Matrix code on the tube bottom. With the 14×14 symbol size it is possible to have a custom prefix of 3 digits (alphanumerical). The 10 digits that follow are predefined by Micronic.
A 2D Data-Matrix code on the bottom of the sample tube is laser-etched so that it won’t wear or fall-off. However, it is not immediately seen (especially not on a small 96-well format tube). Micronic offers another tube, the so called Hybrid tube, which is provided with 4 coding concepts. The Hybrid tube has a 1D barcode and human readable code on the side, which can be easily seen and recognized. The 1D barcode on the side corresponds with the 2D Data-Matrix code on the tube bottom. When choosing a Hybrid tube, customization is possible for the 1D barcode and 2D Data-Matrix code like explained above. In addition, the Hybrid tube has one blank side which has the unique feature that it can be customized with text or a logo. Ultimate traceability can be reached this way.
Multiple options are available to customize your sample storage labware to have a more recognizable and clear documentation system. Contact us now for more information on the customization options.