Are Modular Cleanrooms Environmentally Friendly?

Are Modular Cleanrooms Environmentally Friendly?

Manufacturers and production facilities across the nation are on a continuous search for sustainable solutions. Of course, sustainable solutions help production facilities, labs, and fabrication plants do their part in protecting our environment and natural resources, but there’s even more to it than that.

Whether it be an increased focus on corporate social responsibility, a push towards sustainable business incentives, and/or an effort to get ahead of changing environmental restrictions, there’s a lot of value in going green.

The good news for any facility looking to build or install a modular cleanroom? Modular cleanrooms are environmentally friendly. Designed with sustainable technologies and materials, cleanrooms are helping everyone from automotive and aerospace manufacturers to pharmaceutical laboratories go just a little more green. Read on for more details.

3 “Green” Aspects of Modular Cleanroom Design

Modular cleanroom design has always been less wasteful than other construction methods, but over the years, modular cleanroom design has evolved to include more sustainable features. Cleanroom manufacturers and suppliers have taken initiatives to eliminate excess waste, conserve natural resources, and build for long lasting performance. Here, we’ll explore three green aspects of modular cleanroom design:

1. Recycled Air

Modern cleanroom technology uses fan filter units to continuously reuse and recirculate air. Originally, these fan filters were designed to ensure consistent air temperature, humidity, and cleanliness, but they were soon recognized for their sustainable features as well. Instead of the air being disposed of as waste, it’s now recycled, cutting down on environmental impact as less air has to be treated and conditioned to keep your cleanroom clean.

Another consideration: cleanroom air isn’t free. In fact, it can be rather expensive to treat. Therefore, recycling air through a fan filter unit can be a win-win in terms of sustainability and cost savings.

2. Recycled Materials

Modular cleanrooms are built with a lot of recycled materials, drastically reducing their environmental impact during the construction phase. Some frequently-used recycled materials include:

  • Aluminum framework – Aluminum is almost completely recyclable, and most aluminum used in modular construction today is already made from scrap metal. In modular cleanrooms, this environmentally-friendly material is used to construct cleanroom ceiling grids and other supporting foundations.
  • Gypsum board – Gypsum is a sustainable, durable material that can last up to 50 years, and it’s used to form the wall panels of many modular cleanrooms. Though it may not be right for every cleanroom, it’s an environmentally-friendly option should your ISO Class allow for it.

Apart from those materials, there are a few things modular cleanroom manufacturers may do to keep their services environmentally friendly as well. At Angstrom Technology, we use 100% recyclable packaging designed to protect all parts during transportation, and we ensure our systems are delivered ready for installation. This way, there is no dust, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), or construction debris left at the facility.

3. Built for Long-Term Sustainability

Modular cleanrooms are designed for long-term use. They’re highly durable and require very little maintenance, reducing the need for any new replacement materials.

Beyond their durability, modular cleanrooms are also designed to grow with your facility. Modular cleanroom components can be broken down and reassembled easily, making reconfiguration, addition, and relocation of your cleanroom easy processes. As your facility grows and changes, you don’t need to construct an entirely new cleanroom. Save time, money, materials, and even the environment by opting for a modular option you can reconfigure for decades to come.

Why Choose Environmentally Friendly Modular Cleanrooms?

From natural resources to transportation to materials, modular cleanrooms are guaranteed to reduce waste. If you’re looking to build a more sustainable production facility, modular cleanroom components deliver a sustainable solution that will grow with your business and display exceptional performance over time.

If you’re interested in learning more about modular cleanroom design, check out our Cleanroom Design Guide or get in touch with one of the cleanroom design engineers at Angstrom Technology.

5 Advantages of Modular Cleanrooms for the Plastics Industry

5 Advantages of Modular Cleanrooms for the Plastics Industry

Modular cleanrooms are popular in many industries because of their versatility, durability, and cost effectiveness. They can offer several advantages for the plastics industry to help companies streamline their operations and meet their classification requirements effortlessly. 

Let’s take a look at 5 specific advantages plastics industry cleanrooms can enjoy by going modular.

#1 Modular Cleanrooms are Convenient and Easy to Assemble

Modular cleanrooms are designed to streamline the cleanroom design and construction process. Fabricated off site to your exact specifications, modular panels come pre-wired and insulated, with all the special features you need to make your project a success. They can be assembled according to a detailed set of instructions and integrated with your cleanroom systems — providing you with a fully functional cleanroom with minimum disruption to your facility’s operations.

In the plastics industry, efficiency is key. With a short turnaround time on many projects, having a powerful, convenient cleanroom option that can be designed, built, and installed quickly can make all the difference. Modular cleanrooms provide all the environmental control and stability you need, without the lengthy and expensive process of traditional construction.

#2 Modular Cleanrooms Can be Reconfigured or Expanded

Another great advantage of going modular, is that this cleanroom type can easily be reconfigured, expanded, condensed, or even moved if your project needs change. Modular panels allow for the ultimate flexibility of cleanroom construction — without sacrificing quality. By adding or taking away panels, you can reshape your space to fit in your existing structure, around mounted equipment, and utilize your building’s systems.

Modular cleanrooms used for application in the plastics industry must be able to adapt to changing project demands or goals. A cleanroom that can be easily modified to meet new requirements or be reconfigured to accommodate new equipment, personnel, or products, not only makes it easier to get started on whatever’s next, but it can also save your company money. 

Instead of building new cleanrooms to conform to the classification standards, industry requirements, and cleanroom systems of each new project — one modular cleanroom can do it all.

#3 Modular Cleanrooms Can Meet Any Classification Standard

Modular cleanrooms can adapt to any cleanroom classification or industry standard for cleanliness and environmental control. There are three main types which can meet the needs of your classification and application:

  • HardWall Cleanrooms: capable of reaching any ISO classification — even the most stringent Class 1
  • SoftWall Cleanrooms: lightweight and flexible cleanroom construction ideal for ISO Classes 4-8
  • RigidWall Cleanrooms: crystal-clear modular panels best suited for ISO Classes 5-8

In the plastics industry, cleanrooms must be able to control temperatures and environmental conditions to maintain large machinery that generates significant heat. Plastics cleanrooms must be able to ensure sterility during the manufacturing and packaging of plastics products. 

Especially for the development of plastics for critical uses, like medical devices, extreme care and cleanliness is essential for consumer safety. Modular cleanrooms are able to provide the sterile environment these applications need to be successful.

#4 Modular Cleanrooms are Built to Withstand Anything

Plastics industry cleanrooms have multiple processes in motion at all times, from traffic of personnel, carts, and cranes, to the operation of large equipment like plastic injection molding machines, which can range in size from 50 to 1,000 tons. 

Plastics cleanrooms require consistent cleaning to maintain quality standards and ensure the facility performs at optimal levels. A durable cleanroom is essential to handle day-to-day operations and proper sterilization.

Extremely durable modular panels are made with non outgassing and non particle shedding materials, and designed to withstand anything. They’re fire and impact resistant and can handle thorough, regular cleaning protocols without corroding or losing integrity. ESD-safe materials are also available for sensitive applications.

#5 Modular Cleanrooms are Customizable to Your Application

Modular cleanrooms are designed and built off site, but they can still be constructed with full range of customizations. Depending on what you need your cleanroom to do, your cleanroom will support your custom layout, airflow pattern, industry-specific equipment, and cleanroom trades like your HVAC, lighting, and filtration systems. 

You can even have your modular cleanroom designed to integrate with systems in your existing structure, so it will fit in any sized space, utilize light from existing windows, connect to your air handling system, and more.

Applications in the plastics industry can use modular cleanrooms to meet requirements set by the ISO and their industry, and set their project up for success by incorporating all the tools and features they’ll need in their modular cleanroom design.

Ready to get started on a modular cleanroom? Give Angstrom Technology a call! We design, build, and install modular cleanrooms to meet any classification requirements. Our prefabricated panels come with detailed instructions, ready to set up right away. Of course, if you’d rather skip the work, have our cleanroom experts install it for you!

Cleanroom Construction in your Existing Structure

Cleanroom Construction in your Existing Structure

The ability to construct a cleanroom in any space is a major advantage of the modular cleanroom building process. Retrofit cleanrooms can still reach a wide variety of ISO cleanroom classifications. With a modular cleanroom retrofit in your existing structure, you have the ability to adapt your existing structure to save space and materials.  Let’s take a look at where you can build a cleanroom in your existing space, and what that process looks like.

Where Can You Construct a Cleanroom?

Cleanroom construction can happen in a variety of spaces, depending on the application and its requirements. The type of cleanroom for each space may differ, as well as the capabilities each may have. Let’s take a look at three examples.

Cleanroom construction can happen in a variety of spaces, depending on the application and its requirements. The type of cleanroom for each space may differ, as well as the capabilities each may have. Let’s take a look at three examples. 

Cleanroom Construction in a Large Industrial Space

If you’d like to construct a cleanroom in a large space, you have many options when it comes to the square footage and layout of your cleanroom. Although you have plenty of space and flexibility, it’s important to only build the cleanroom as large as it needs to be. This will not only save you money on materials during cleanroom construction, but will also cut down energy usage and utilities expenses once the cleanroom is in operation. 

In a large space, you can suspend modular cleanroom panels from a strong ceiling grid or build a freestanding cleanroom. Your cleanroom can also be built to include existing walls, utilize light from existing windows, and even connect to the utilities of the building — as long as they meet your cleanroom classification requirements. In a large space, any type of modular cleanroom will do, so you can choose between a HardWall, SoftWall, or RigidWall cleanroom — whatever will be best for your application.

Cleanroom Construction in Small Spaces

Although large spaces offer plenty of room to spread out, don’t discount smaller spaces for cleanroom construction. Using a more flexible modular cleanroom type — such as SoftWall cleanrooms — can be just as effective in a tighter space. SoftWall modular cleanroom panels can be arranged into more condensed layouts than their HardWall or RigidWall counterparts, while still able to cater to a wide variety of cleanroom classifications (ISO Classes 4-8). 

With high customization options and project versatility, SoftWall cleanrooms are ideal for applications that need to be set up in small spaces. Additionally, their minimalist and lightweight design means they can be set up quickly, easily reconfigured or taken down and stored, and moved virtually anywhere you need a cleanroom.

Office Space to Cleanroom Conversion

When looking for space to put a new cleanroom, unused office space presents a great opportunity. Cleanroom construction can use many elements of the existing structure in the new cleanroom design. Depending on your cleanroom’s requirements, you may be able to make use of an existing ceiling grid, walls, and windows, or even connect with the building’s HVAC system. However, if your cleanroom has stringent requirements it may need a dedicated cleanroom HVAC.  

To convert the office space into a cleanroom, modular furring panels are attached to the walls of the space, creating a flush, non particle-shedding structure. Office space conversions can even be outfitted with the capabilities of HardWall cleanrooms — offering a high level control over environmental conditions within the space. The retrofit cleanroom design might also include antistatic flooring, a grid lighting system, and an airflow pattern that works with the customized space. 

Retrofit Cleanroom Construction Process

The process of retrofit cleanroom construction in every space will look a bit different, as it’s highly customized to each application. It involves four main steps, of which the first two are the most critical. Those include assessment, design, construction, and installation.

Cleanroom Assessment

Cleanroom construction in an existing structure relies more on the planning stages to make sure your space can support the cleanroom you need, before any work begins. A cleanroom expert must first assess the space to determine it will accommodate the necessary equipment, furniture, and personnel. They’ll also examine the quality of the room’s air to determine filtration needs, and look at what systems can be adapted or replaced. 

If the HVAC system in the current building can be utilized, it may need to be upgraded to meet your classification requirements. Or, if it’s not powerful enough to achieve the desired level of control, it will need to be replaced with a more efficient system.

Cleanroom Design

When planning for cleanroom construction in an existing structure, there are many components that must be carefully considered in the retrofit cleanroom design. When designing your retrofit cleanroom layout, the cleanroom designer will need to factor in the space they have to work with, and how it influences the design of other systems in the cleanroom space — particularly the airflow pattern. 

A cleanroom design expert uses computational fluid dynamics to map out the airflow pattern for your application and layout. They’ll also decide where furniture and equipment will be installed, and the wiring and insulation needed in each modular panel.

Cleanroom Construction

With design complete, it’s time to move on to cleanroom construction. With modular cleanrooms, the modular panels are built out to meet the specification of the design and the classification standards of the cleanroom. They are pre-wired and pre-insulated so they can be quickly assembled and installed in the existing building once they arrive.

Cleanroom Installation

Finally, the cleanroom is ready to be installed in your existing structure. Having spent more time planning and designing the cleanroom to work in your space, the installation process will be straightforward — simply a matter of putting the pieces together where they belong:  Modular panels will be attached to existing walls, set up freestanding, or suspended. Lighting systems will be integrated and the cleanroom HVAC system connected. HEPA filters will be installed and checked, so they can start cleaning the air as soon as possible.

Cleanroom construction in an existing structure requires extra care and attention. Due to the critical nature of the cleanroom, it’s recommended to have a team of experts install the cleanroom into your space to ensure a flawless end product. Cleanroom experts dedicate their livelihoods to providing this service, so you get the right cleanroom for your application and your space every time.

Wondering if you can build a cleanroom in your space? Give Angstrom Technology a call! Our professional cleanroom designers can assess your site and design a cleanroom that will work perfectly in your space. To get started, give us a call or reach out to us online today.


What to Expect When Assembling Your Pre-Fabricated Modular Cleanroom

What to Expect When Assembling Your Pre-Fabricated Modular Cleanroom

Modular cleanrooms are the most convenient way to build a custom cleanroom for your facility. Panels are pre-fabricated according to your specific cleanroom design, and arrive with everything you need to get your cleanroom up and running as soon as possible. Modular cleanroom panels offer many benefits to the cleanroom building process, such as: 

  • Designed with a cleanroom expert to meet your cleanroom classification
  • Custom-built to your application and project requirements
  • Pre-wired and pre-insulated panels are ready to use
  • Can easily be reconfigured if your project needs change
  • Easy to assemble for a quick turnaround time

When your prefabricated modular cleanroom panels arrive, they’ll come with detailed directions to guide you through the setup. If the process of ordering, shipping, and assembling a modular cleanroom seems daunting, let’s break down what you can expect throughout this process. 

What to Expect When Assembling a Modular Cleanroom

Modular cleanrooms are much more convenient than building a cleanroom on-site, but you may not know what to expect when it arrives. Let’s talk about what happens when you order your custom modular cleanroom and what’s needed when it comes time to assemble it onsite.

Ordering Your Modular Cleanroom

When you order your modular cleanroom, a cleanroom design expert will go over the details of  your specific project with you to make sure it contains everything you need to make your  new cleanroom a success. The designing process could take a few weeks, depending on the intricacies of your cleanroom design, the type of cleanroom you order, and your cleanroom classification and specific industry requirements.  Once design is complete, the panels will be fabricated to your exact specifications.

Once the panels are ready to ship, they will be packaged and transported with the utmost care. All modular cleanroom panels are made of the highest quality materials — strong enough to withstand the conditions of your work, yet flexible enough to be set up and reconfigured with ease if your project needs change.

Cleanroom design experts handle all the arrangements, so you won’t have to worry about controlling contamination risks in the shipping of your cleanroom panels. 

Professional Cleanroom Assembly Assistance

If you want to skip the DIY setup, you can have cleanroom professionals complete the installation for you. A cleanroom installation team can assemble your custom modular cleanroom with minimum disruption to your facility’s operations and with maximum efficiency to get your new cleanroom up and running as soon as possible. Quality cleanroom construction is very important to the initial and future functionality of a cleanroom.   A professional install team can make sure all the technical details are carried out according to your cleanroom design so that it complies with your classification requirements and industry standards.

How Long Does Modular Cleanroom Assembly Take?

The entire design-to-installation process will depend on the complexity of your unique cleanroom. Do you have special features, storage, furniture, lighting, or systems to include in the design? Does your cleanroom fall under a stringent cleanroom classification? More complex cleanrooms will require more time to make sure every detail is just right when the modular panels arrive on your site.

Once the cleanroom has arrived, the assembly time can also vary by cleanroom type. SoftWall cleanrooms are known for being easy to assemble, disassemble and reconfigure. SoftWall modular cleanroom assembly generally only takes a few hours. HardWall and RigidWall cleanroom assembly is more involved, but can still be completed in just a few days. 

Once your modular cleanroom is set up, it’s only a matter of keeping it in optimal condition. Routine maintenance will serve to keep all systems running at peak efficiency so your operations can continue to move along smoothly.

Whether you prefer to assemble your modular cleanroom yourself, or would like a team of professionals to install it for you, Angstrom Technology is here to design, build, and deliver the best cleanroom available. To learn more about the process and get started with your cleanroom installation, get in touch with us today.

Modular Cleanroom Building Process

Modular Cleanroom Building Process

The modular cleanroom building process is as multifaceted as your industry and as vital as your work, which is why finding with the right team to help you with cleanroom design, construction, and installation is crucial. They’re responsible for making sure your cleanroom is developed, built, and delivered to your exact specifications and ready to serve you as soon as possible. Let’s explore what’s involved in the modular cleanroom building process.

Building a Custom Modular Cleanroom

Building the perfect cleanroom requires behind-the-scenes planning based on your requirements and available space. The work begins with your cleanroom classification.

Cleanroom Classification

Your cleanroom designer thoroughly understands your cleanroom classification and how it applies to every part of your cleanroom build. They’ll work with you to learn about your industry-specific standards as well as any special features or modifications your team and project need to be successful.

Space Requirements

With your needs in mind, your cleanroom design team evaluates your current space to see where it needs upgrading and adjusting to be ready to receive your cleanroom. When choosing where to install your cleanroom, you have a few options. It can either be attached to the building’s structure, suspended from a strong ceiling grid, or freestanding within the space. 

Your cleanroom layout adjusts based on your available space, to fit around mounted equipment and even use light from existing windows. In some applications, your new modular cleanroom may be able to connect to the building’s existing HVAC system. However, some facilities may require a dedicated cleanroom HVAC for ultimate environmental control.

Cleanroom Types

When evaluating your available space, classification requirements, and project needs, your cleanroom design team can help you determine which cleanroom type will be the best fit for your application. If you have a small space and need a condensable modular cleanroom that will allow you to easily expand operations as you grow, a SoftWall cleanroom may be ideal for you. Or, if you have stringent classification requirements and need specialized equipment and considerations, a HardWall cleanroom may be better suited for your project.

Modular Cleanroom Design

When designing your ideal modular cleanroom, many different factors go into developing the ideal plan for your new cleanroom. Your cleanroom design includes the equipment you’ll be using as well as any cleanroom furniture, cabinetry and storage, personnel and paths for them to move in the space. Your layout is designed with this information in mind, as well as your cleanroom classification — which dictates the required ceiling coverage percentage and the number of FFUs required to meet it. 

Cleanroom design experts use computational fluid dynamics to develop a virtual model of your cleanroom. They use this to determine the best airflow pattern for your space to meet all requirements. Your airflow pattern should be able to clean all of the air within the space effectively with each air change in order to make the most efficient use of HEPA filters and extend their life. 

Your cleanroom design also intersects with other systems in your cleanroom including lighting, static control, pressurization, and more. Additional spaces for storage, gowning, and waste disposal can also be included as necessary. 

With all of this information in place, your modular cleanroom design is an all-inclusive system that will be easy to replicate once assembled at your site.

Modular Cleanroom Construction

Once the design phase is complete, the modular cleanroom panels are manufactured to exact specifications. The panels are pre-wired and pre-insulated for efficiency. Modular panels are designed to fit together quickly and easily like a three-dimensional puzzle. Once the panels are developed, they are packaged securely so they arrive clean and ready to use.

Even though they’re fully customized to build your unique cleanroom, the modular design means each panel stands alone. Modular cleanroom panels can be reconfigured, expanded, condensed, or stored so you can easily modify or upgrade your cleanroom for new projects or classification requirements.

Modular Cleanroom Installation

When your modular cleanroom panels arrive at your site, they’ll come with detailed instructions for how to assemble your custom-designed cleanroom. You can either assemble it yourself or have it professionally installed by the team that is already familiar with your classification standards, building space, and cleanroom design.

How Long Will the Cleanroom Building Process Take?

The entire modular cleanroom building process varies in length depending on your classification standards and level of customization. Some cleanroom types, like SoftWall cleanrooms, can be fully installed and ready to use in a few days, where HardWall cleanrooms with stringent requirements and many modifications could take up to a few weeks. In either case, the cleanroom design experts take the necessary time to make sure everything meets your classification standards. When the process is complete, you’ll have a top-quality, high-performance modular cleanroom that is fully equipped to take your operations to the next level.

Worried about designing all parts of your cleanroom up to standard? Let Angstrom Technology help! Our cleanroom design experts know how your cleanroom’s HVAC, filtration system, and airflow patterns can work together in a seamless and efficient way. We can build your cleanroom so it’s up and running as soon as possible and meeting all classification requirements. To get started on your cleanroom design, give us a call or reach out online today.

Redesigning Your Modular Cleanroom? Here are 5 Things to Keep in Mind

Redesigning Your Modular Cleanroom? Here are 5 Things to Keep in Mind

Modular cleanrooms — particularly SoftWall cleanrooms — are easy to expand, downsize, or reconfigure. When redesigning a modular cleanroom, some things you should keep in mind are: whether you plan to downsize or upsize your space, how to best reconfigure your systems to maintain class standards, a few ways to repurpose extra materials, and the importance of working with experts who have experience in cleanroom redesign and can help you complete the job to your specifications.


Redesign Your Modular Cleanroom

The great thing about modular cleanroom panels or SoftWalls is that they can be rearranged with ease to suit the needs of your business as it grows or changes. By adding or subtracting modular cleanroom panels you can redesign your cleanroom to meet new needs or class standards or save on energy and costs. Be careful not to underestimate the space your equipment and personnel need to function effectively with your cleanroom redesign.


Expand Your Cleanroom

To expand your modular cleanroom, the process is easy! Simply add extra panels and arrange them in a layout that suits your equipment and production goals. Keep in mind that with extra space you may need additional furniture to support equipment, store materials, or serve as workspaces for employees. 

A cleanroom expansion will require the redesign of paths through the space to limit contamination and streamline work within your cleanroom. You may also need to update your HVAC system. If you have more air in your cleanroom to change, you’ll need a more powerful system that can handle the job and maintain strict air quality standards.


Downsize Your Cleanroom

Removing panels will reduce the space inside your cleanroom. SoftWall cleanrooms can be downsized easily because they aren’t fixed or rigid. They are also easy to expand again if you need more space in the future. 

When downsizing, make sure to leave sufficient room for all equipment and workspaces as well as space to access materials. Eliminate unnecessary furniture or fixtures and retain the essential pieces. If you have extra panels, furniture, or surfaces, you may be able to repurpose them outside of your cleanroom.


Reconfigure Your Cleanroom

If you don’t need to change the amount of space in your cleanroom, you may need to reconfigure your layout to accommodate different projects, equipment, or class standards. Modular cleanroom panels can be rearranged to create a different room shape and make new paths within the space. You may also need to reconfigure your HVAC system, making sure to not block airflow when rearranging furniture and other pieces.


Maintain Class Standards

With any kind of cleanroom redesign, you’ll need to make sure your new cleanroom matches the existing class standards for your application or meets the new standards for which you’re redesigning. Any new panels, flooring, and furniture should be made of materials that are non-particle shedding and support the use they will receive with moderate to heavy traffic. Remember that gowning areas and pass-throughs are also part of your cleanroom and should be updated as necessary.


Utilize Extra Materials

If your cleanroom redesign left you with extra materials like panels, furniture, or equipment, consider if you can repurpose them before disposing. Modular cleanroom panels can be made into gowning areas, storage for cleaning supplies, or extra equipment. Utilize extra panels outside of your downsized cleanroom as places to keep unused tools or as lockers to store employees’ personal items while they’re working in your cleanroom.


Support Your Systems

If you’re redesigning your cleanroom, chances are your HVAC system will need to be redesigned or updated as well. If you’ve expanded your workspace, a more powerful system may be necessary to change a larger amount of air consistently and thoroughly. Even if your cleanroom hasn’t grown or changed size at all, a cleanroom redesign is a great time to check in with your systems and make sure they can service every part of your rearranged layout. 


Work with Modular Cleanroom Professionals

When redesigning your modular cleanroom, you’ll want to seek the advice and assistance of professionals in the cleanroom industry, not just any contractor. A team with cleanroom design experience will be well-versed in your cleanroom’s class standards and be able to ensure that every part of your cleanroom redesign is up to code. They can help you understand where you can save space and energy and how to move things around in a smart and efficient way.


Redesigning your modular cleanroom? We’re here to help! Angstrom Technology experts can help you downsize or upgrade your cleanroom on your budget, and in a way that maximizes your space and process efficiency. Reach out to us online or give us a call at (888) 768-6900 to get started.