Materials

The category of your cleanroom will determine the specific type of materials that can be used in its construction or within it. For instance, acceptable solvents and garment materials vary amongst the different classes of cleanroom.

There are also typical items used for day to day activities which are deemed unacceptable in cleanrooms. However, items in this category can also be found in cleanroom-approved forms. It’s therefore vital that only the cleanroom approved versions of such items are used in a cleanroom and never substituted for the regular types.

Below are items whose usage is generally prohibited for cleanroom applications:

  • Commercial vacuum cleaners or similar unapproved cleaning equipment
  • Grease, oils and lubricants
  • Wood products
  • Leather
  • Bare aluminium
  • Velcro
  • Powders
  • Aerosol
  • Cardboard
  • Food and drink
  • Gum
  • Makeup
  • Unapproved plastic
  • Regular writing tools, paper or notebooks
  • Books and book bags
  • Silica gel
  • Open cell foam materials
  • Unapproved tape or adhesive
  • Plastic bags and bubble wrap

Fortunately, many of these items are available as cleanroom-approved materials and Total Clean Air can provide them in the quantity and quality you require. This includes:

  • Paper, notebooks, pens and pencils
  • Adhesives or tape
  • Cleaning materials and vacuum cleaners
  • Wipes and detergents
  • Solvents
  • Plastic containers

Depending on the class of your cleanroom and laid down protocols, electronics such as laptops, mobile phones, and other similar equipment may not be allowed into the cleanroom.

Modular Cleanroom Benefits

  • Modular Construction
  • Quick Assembly Time
  • Versatility
  • Reconfiguration
  • Airflow Control
  • Inexpensive Modifications

Best Practices to Maintain Cleanliness Levels

To maintain cleanliness levels in a cleanroom, the following personnel behaviours are recommended:

  • Move around and operate within the cleanroom in slow, calm movements
  • Minimise the amount of talking
  • Avoiding smoking or being in contact with second-hand smoke prior to entering a cleanroom
  • Washing hands before and after entering a cleanroom
  • Using hairnets and beard covers whilst in the cleanroom
  • Putting clothes on and taking them off in the prescribed order
  • Ensure that cleanroom clothing fits properly before entering the secured environment
  • Not bringing unneeded or prohibited materials into the secure environment

Because personnel create more particles than anything else in a cleanroom, it’s crucial that proper garments are worn at all times. Adhering to this and maintaining appropriate cleanroom hygiene and behaviour will significantly contribute to cleanroom integrity.

When in doubt about the suitability of certain materials for cleanroom use, it is advised not to bring them in at all. Effective and personalised training is key to educating personnel with regards what is impermissible in a cleanroom environment. Total Clean Air can provide cleanroom training, as well as validate your controlled environment. Give us a call today to get started.

Cleanroom Design, Build & Validation

  • Budgeting and planning
  • Engineering, design & layout
  • Airflow and filtration design
  • Construction and Installation
  • Full Certification of our product
  • Industry-specific equipment installation
  • Validation

Cleanroom Suitability Tests

Cleanroom suitability refers to the fitness of a material, machine, operating utility, or other article for cleanroom use. This is most applicable in a cleanroom where air cleanliness and similar parameters are dictated by ISO 14644 or other relevant regulations.

Cleanroom suitability primarily comprises an operating utility or machine’s particle emission. It’s vital to keep in mind the specific requirements and working conditions of a cleanroom area when deciding which materials and elements to use in its construction. Without appropriate design, the cost of installation will not be optimised, while the long-term safety and quality standards of the facility will be compromised.

Testing

Cleanroom suitability tests are carried out with the aim of determining the suitability of materials, operating utilities (venting, air conditioning etc.) or machines for use in a cleanroom.

The test will be executed with the aid of specialised measurement techniques, because non-scientific methods cannot adequately assess particle emission behaviour. Metrological tests won’t be required if obvious flaws such as rust or presence of porous or unsuitable materials exist in the operating utilities or machines.

The test cleanroom must be no less than one class cleaner than the test piece; if not, it will be impossible to relate to the test piece particles detected. However, there is an exception to this rule, which is when testing the suitability of a test piece to be used in a Class 1 cleanroom. According to DIN EN ISO 14644-1, such tests must be undertaken only in a Class 1 cleanroom, due to the fact that other cleanroom classes will not have the appropriate parameters. Particle counters are applied as devices for measurement, so as to define particulate contamination in terms of quantity, geometrical size, chronological progression, distribution, and location.

Talk to Total Clean Air Today for Your Cleanroom Materials

At Total Clean Air, our priority is the success of your cleanroom project. We are ISO 9001:2015, ISO 14001:2015, and OHSAS 18001:2007 accredited, which means we are more than capable of helping you achieve best working conditions in your cleanroom.

phillip.godden
Phillip Godden

Phillip Godden is the Founder & Chief/Executive Officer at Total Clean Air.

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