What Is A Cleanroom?

What Is A Cleanroom?

The term “cleanroom” is a seemingly simple one: a room that’s clean. But it’s actually more complicated than that. Cleanrooms are specialized environments that are necessary for sensitive processes and operations, requiring careful planning and consideration, as well as specialized equipment and construction. So what exactly is a cleanroom?

What is a cleanroom?

A cleanroom is a controlled environment that is regulated to certain standards specific to the application, for the purpose of preventing contamination of a process or product. This generally includes controlling the amount of particulate matter in the air, which involves air filtration, control of air entering the cleanroom, and special clothing and other equipment worn by people inside the cleanroom, such as sterile gowns and gloves.

Who uses cleanrooms?

Cleanrooms are used in a variety of industries, including (but certainly not limited to) aerospace manufacturing, medical device manufacturing, semiconductor manufacturing, water treatment, food preparation and manufacturing, medical marijuana grow rooms, biotech manufacturing, e-cigarette and e-liquid manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, industrial manufacturing, and hospitals. The industry and cleanroom purpose (clean storage, process control, manufacturing, quality testing, etc.) determine the cleanroom standard that is used to control the environment.

What are cleanroom standards and classifications?

Cleanroom standards define the amount of particulate contamination that is allowable in a cleanroom space for each particle size. Cleanroom classifications use these standards to classify cleanrooms and measure them for compliance. There are two classification systems that are generally used, categories in which overlap. One is the ISO Classification system, which has eight categories ranging from least strict (ISO Class 8) to most strict (ISO Class 1). The other is the Federal Standard 209E (Fed-Std 209E) which ranges from Class 1 (most controlled) to Class 100,000 (least controlled).

Read more on cleanroom classifications and standards here.

No matter what your application or cleanroom needs, Angstrom Technology can design the perfect cleanroom for you.

When Is It Time for a New Cleanroom?

When Is It Time for a New Cleanroom?

If you have a cleanroom or laboratory space, chances are it cost your company a great deal of money to construct and get into working order. Because of that investment, you want to get the most mileage out of your cleanroom. But you shouldn’t put off updating or redesigning your cleanroom, especially when it’s integrity and functionality are crucial to your processes and operations. Here’s when you know it’s time for a new cleanroom:

When your application changes

If you’ve been using your cleanroom space for one purpose and your product offerings or processes have changed, you may need to redesign your cleanroom to meet your new process needs. For example, if you have a softwall cleanroom that you use for clean storage of e-liquid for e-cigarettes, but you now need a controlled environment in which to manufacture and test your e-liquid products, you’ll need a new cleanroom that can provide a higher level of environmental control and can accommodate the larger space you’ll need for workstations and equipment.

When your current cleanroom doesn’t meet your needs

If your cleanroom doesn’t meet your needs for your current application, even if your application hasn’t changed, don’t make do, upgrade. If your cleanroom doesn’t offer the level of environmental control that you need, have enough space, or accommodate the equipment you need for your process, it’s time to go in for a cleanroom redesign.

When you need more space

When people are bumping into each other in your cleanroom on a regular basis, having to share cramped workspaces, or waiting in line to use the fume hood, you need more space in your cleanroom. This could mean building an entirely new cleanroom, if your cleanroom is traditionally constructed, or expanding your cleanroom if you have a modular cleanroom.

When your current cleanroom lacks integrity

If your cleanroom is unable to meet the standard for environmental control that your application requires, it’s time for a new one, or at least an evaluation and replacement of what’s not working in your current cleanroom. It could be that your filtration system is not operating efficiently and needs replacement or that your space is not properly sealed from the outside environment.

If you’re updating your current cleanroom, or starting from scratch, call the experts at Angstrom Technology.