In the past few years, the world has started paying more attention to the dangers of airborne pathogens. Cleanrooms have been around since the 1960s, but today’s cleanrooms can maintain pristine standards unimagined by early innovators. They are now environmentally-controlled, enclosed spaces in which the concentration of airborne contaminants is confined or restricted within specified limits. With the onset of the pandemic and ever-increasing healthcare standards, the cleanroom technology equipment market is poised to grow by $1.57 billion in the next five years.
In healthcare, cleanrooms are being employed to protect patients and staff from contaminants and prevent the spread of harmful particles with air handling systems that use sophisticated filters and manipulate air pressure.
In any application, detailed guidelines exist. First and foremost, outside contaminants must not be introduced into the cleanroom environment. But it’s also critical that any equipment in the space does not generate contaminants through processes such as friction or by emitting fumes. In addition, any existing contaminants (such as airborne pathogens) must be eliminated or expelled, and procedures must be in place to prevent contaminants from accumulating.
To meet these guidelines, cleanrooms need specialized construction and sophisticated air handling systems. Factors such as pressurization, airflow, humidity, temperature, and filtration must be monitored and continually managed.
Coward Environmental, Inc. (CESI) is proud to represent many manufacturers who build cleanroom components and systems. We’ve highlighted some of these offerings in this article.
Operamed specializes in creating modular operating and cleanroom environments. By employing the benefits of off-site construction, Operamed can meet the demanding environmental conditions required by the healthcare industry
Operamed TrueSpace is a modular system designed to provide flexibility when designing critical care facilities. Prefabricated components comply with the highest quality standards. This manufacturer creates customized solutions that allow healthcare professionals to quickly build new spaces, including cleanrooms and operating suites. The TrueSpace line includes touchless medical image navigation technology, door modules, raised floors, sealed suspended ceilings, and even surgical washbasins.
TModular products offer solutions for emergency pre-triage wards, intensive care units, operating blocks, clinics, laboratories, and cleanrooms. The purpose-built installations are designed and manufactured according to relevant international standards. TModuler uses a series of parts and modules to maximize engineering flexibility. Clients can customize any module according to the needs of a site and make it easy to modify or relocate.
BASX Solutions Modular Cleanrooms
BASX offers positive and negative air pressure cleanroom solutions. Positive air pressure cleanrooms systems exist when air is escaping from doors, ceilings, or walls. Negative air pressure cleanrooms are required when hazardous materials or biohazards may need to be contained, or the spread of such materials needs to be prevented.
BASX Solutions Softwall Cleanrooms fall into the positive air pressure category. Clean air is provided using fan filter units (FFUs) with HEPA filters located in the ceiling. A sealed ceiling grid supplies lighting. In Softwall Cleanrooms, air passes vertically down and exits through space at the bottom perimeter of the curtain walls.
BasX Solutions Modular Hardwall systems create a negative air pressure cleanroom. This approach uses a fully welded, unified ceiling grid with tight seals. The grid can be designed to be completely walkable, supporting the exchange of 2’x4’ lights, tiles, and FFUs. An extruded panel inset fastening system flush to the steel frame creates a “ledge-less” room interior.
BASX Solutions HEPA Stations
BASX HEPA Stations are placed within an existing cleanroom to isolate processes or act as standalone workstations in unregulated environments. This portable clean environment allows individuals to work in a contamination-controlled Class 100 environment. It can be used with an existing table or may feature an optional BASX built-in tabletop.
The self-contained AAF AstroFan FFU is designed for use in both turbulent mixing and laminar airflow cleanroom areas. It can be used with the AAF T-Bar ceiling grid, the AstroDry HD ceiling grid, and other compatible grids. It uses a replaceable HEPA or ULPA AstroCel II filter. With a clean filter at full rated airflow, this unit has a single unit SPL (sound pressure level) of 52-56 dB(a) at 1 m of the filter face.
AAF AstroFan CleanZone DFU
The AstroFan CleanZone DFU unit meets the growing demand for ready-to-use, quick supply, self-contained clean zones. The CleanZone DFU unit is a cost-effective answer to the need for local laminar downflow units created to meet strict cleanroom requirements.
AAF AstroFan FFU Filter
An anodized aluminum extrusion cleanroom profile forms the AstroFan FFU filter’s base frame. Three sides of this frame are fitted with fixed acrylic shields, while the entrance zone is provided with PVC stripe curtains. This FFU provides nearly particle-free air into the CleanZone unit, creating a laminar downflow cleanroom environment. The air then leaves the Clean-Zone unit underneath the shields/curtain and recirculates into the surrounding environment.
AAF FMII Filter
The FM-II module is a heavy-duty, self-contained fan filter module designed to achieve class 10,000 to 100 downflow air supply where the use of conventional ducted modules is impractical or where the air supply has insufficient static pressure to move air through a HEPA filter.
AAF CRII Filter
The CR II is a high-performance filter module that can also be used to form an air-supply ceiling suitable for use in operating rooms and intensive care wards. A rectangular connecting flange on top of the housing may be connected to the air supply duct.
AstroCel II Filter
This low-pressure drop mini-pleat HEPA/ULPA filter offers efficiencies from 99.99% on 0.3 micrometer to 99.9995% on 0.1 – 0.2 micrometer particles. Custom efficiencies are available.
Lindner Filter Fan Unit
These FFUs are suitable for use in cleanrooms with turbulent air flows, or laminar flows up to class 3 according to DIN EN ISO 14644-1.
Lindner Filter Fan Upside Down (FFUSD)
This recirculating air unit can be used in clean rooms with very small room heights or limited floor space. It recirculates high air volumes to reduce particles in the air supply without the need for additional air exhaust units.
Linder Air Grille
This ventilation grille can be used for supply air and return air systems in overflow areas between two rooms or between doors. The “Lamelle” model is designed for use in cleanrooms. “Radiasorb” can be used in operating rooms. Other special-purpose models are available.
Linder Return Air Systems
Lindner offers a range of return air systems for use in cleanrooms, operating rooms, and laboratories.
Want to Discuss Your Cleanroom Project?
Coward Environmental Systems, Inc. is proud to represent manufacturers of cleanroom products for healthcare projects in the Philadelphia region, Central PA, Delaware, and Maryland. Contact us today to discover how we can be a part of your next project.