Choosing cleanroom cabinets requires some thought, as there aren’t clear guidelines for which are best for every cleanroom application. No official certification system exists for cabinetry the way other cleanroom materials are declared safe for use in cleanrooms. It’s important to carefully consider a few factors when making your choice, such as your medical cleanroom classification, what materials are compatible for use within your facility, and how your cleanroom cabinets will be used.
Medical cleanroom cabinets are used for safely storing products and substances to keep them out of the way in a cool, dry environment. You can use cleanroom cabinets for storing various items including:
- Tools and equipment
- Biological samples
- Hazardous substances
- Cleaning supplies
- Gowns and booties
- Industry-specific products
Types of Cleanroom Cabinets
Not every cabinet will be compatible with your cleanroom. The ideal cabinet for your application will be functional and space-efficient, and not introduce contaminants into the cleanroom nor allow them to collect on the material. Here are a few common medical cleanroom cabinet materials.
Stainless Steel Cleanroom Cabinets
Stainless steel cleanroom cabinets are the most popular style because they function well in many different types of cleanrooms. Great for diverse applications, stainless steel can handle wet or dry conditions and a wide range of temperatures. Stainless steel also has the advantage of being easy to maintain and sanitize.
These cleanroom cabinets can build up static electricity, so they should be used in a cleanroom where static isn’t a threat, or adapted with a grounding or dissipation system built into the cabinet design. (Tip: For superior corrosion resistance, consider electropolished stainless steel.)
Open Wire Shelving
If your cleanroom uses a vertical airflow pattern, you may instead choose wire shelving over cabinets, in order to let the air move freely and limit the collection of contaminants. Either chrome-plated wire or polymer shelving are both great options that are about a third the cost of stainless steel. Open wire shelving is best for cleanrooms that don’t use corrosive agents in operation or for cleaning.
Laminate Cleanroom Storage Cabinets
Laminate cleanroom cabinets are an affordable choice for storage in cleanrooms with less stringent requirements. These cabinets are available in a variety of configurations with adjustable shelves. They can be either wall mounted, freestanding, or on casters.
Epoxy Cleanroom Cabinets
An epoxy coating can be applied to cleanroom cabinets and surfaces to increase stain resistance. Epoxy cleanroom cabinets work well for wet and dry applications.
Polyurethane Cleanroom Cabinets
Polyurethane is another coating similar to epoxy, but with greater chemical resistance. Polyurethane cleanroom cabinets have a smooth surface that is easy to clean and difficult to scratch or chip.
Acrylic Cleanroom Cabinets
Clear acrylic cleanroom storage cabinets are great for protecting products, parts, and substances. Using transparent cabinets can limit unnecessary movement in the cleanroom, reducing the risk of contamination.
Choosing Cleanroom Cabinets
As an important part of cleanroom design, all storage solutions like cleanroom cabinets and shelves used in a controlled environment must be compatible with cleanroom use and limit contaminant collection. Consider your cleanroom’s airflow pattern when choosing cabinets or shelves and avoid obstructing your HVAC and filtering system. Your cleanroom cabinets should also be able to withstand the materials you use for cleaning without corroding or shedding particles. Finally, if your cleanroom operations or staff are endangered by static electricity, avoid conductive materials unless you have a method to ground charges.
If you’re still not sure which cleanroom cabinets are best for your cleanroom, let Angstrom Technology help. As cleanroom design experts, we can help you choose the option that’s best for your application, and that meets your cleanroom classification. For more help choosing cleanroom cabinets and other furnishings, give us a call or reach out online.