Refurbish, Reuse, Recycle: The Impact of Certified Pre-Owned Instruments on Laboratory Sustainability
Written by Agilent
With 85% of laboratories reporting sustainability goals*, it’s clear that environmentally responsible practices have become a key focus for a lab’s continued success. But even with goals in place, the question remains: How can a lab become more sustainable, accomplish throughput and research goals, while also staying in budget? At its core, sustainability is doing more with less. Resource savings can also translate to cost savings when considering critical equipment needs by choosing pre-owned instrumentation.
Laboratory instruments—especially Mass Spectrometers and Atomic Spectroscopy equipment— are laden with precious metals, silicone chips, and other finite resources. Not to mention the other plastics, electronics, and total energy input required for manufacturing. That’s why it is important to consider providing a second life to a robust analytical instrument when making purchasing decisions for your lab.
The Circular Economy of Lab Instrumentation
Programs like Agilent’s Certified Pre-Owned Instruments help reduce precious resource use, giving analytical instruments a second life through a circular economy model (Figure 1). Once the laboratory that originally purchased a new instrument (the “First Lab”) no longer needs it, they can return the used instrument to Agilent through the Trade-in and Buyback program^ and receive credit in exchange for the instrument’s residual value. Agilent engineers perform a rigorous inspection, cleaning, and decontamination process so that anything that has touched a sample is thoroughly sonicated and/or replaced. The instrument next goes through further parts replacement and a suite of tests until it passes original specifications.
The certified pre-owned instrument is complete with new covers, consumables, and the latest firmware & software—bringing the instrument back to like-new quality. It is then available for resale to a second lab, making the most of consumed resources.
For laboratories looking to refresh their instrument fleet, the Trade-In and Buyback program can be beneficial for multiple reasons. First and foremost, it is a means to unlock value from older instrumentation to lessen the capital expenditure initially required to purchase a new instrument. Secondly, valuable bench space can be freed up for more efficient models. The responsibility of instrument disposal is shifted to Agilent, where a team of experts routinely manages these decisions and logistics. Finally, the program serves as an outlet for environmentally conscious waste disposal, resulting in reduced emissions for the company.
In addition to its sustainability benefits, Agilent’s program not only provides laboratories a means of purchasing equipment at a lower cost (certified pre-owned instruments are often available at 30-50% the new instrument price), but also guarantees peace-of-mind with a same-as-new, 12-month warranty and installation and introduction by Agilent service professionals.
Whether you’re a “first lab” purchasing brand-new equipment or a “second lab” enjoying the economic benefits of like-new instrumentation, choosing a vendor with an effective certified pre-owned instrument program supports a sustainable circular economy, enabling adoption of environmentally friendly practices and access to scientific innovation.
For more on the Agilent Certified Pre-Owned Instrument program or request a quote, visit: www.agilent.com/chem/CPO-instruments.
* Understanding Key Challenges and Pain Points in the Global Laboratory Market Survey 2017. Agilent data on file.
^ The Agilent Trade-In and Buyback program is available in the following countries: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, China, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Korea, The Netherlands, Puerto Rico, Singapore, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom, United States.