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Maintaining Cleanrooms And Clean Manufacturing Areas

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What good is a cleanroom if it doesn’t stay clean? It’s a fair question to consider. At this point, our readers should be well aware about the importance and need for cleanroom environments in today’s modern society. More than ever before, the United States and global economy demands cutting edge technology and innovative medical devices to help improve the quality of life for people across the planet. SOS Cleanroom is proud to ensure the safe and hygienic manufacturing of these type of products through our cleanroom products that we’ve sold to countless businesses over the years.

Maintain Your Operation With SOS Cleanroom Wipes

Products with small components like semiconductor chips and other finite circuitry are becoming more and more sensitive to things like dust, vapors and other types of airborne particles. As such, the use of cleanrooms and clean manufacturing operations is only becoming a more important and relevant issue in today’s technology-driven world. While the concept of a cleanroom is great, maintaining a cleanroom and keeping it as free of any contaminants as possible is arguably more important.

Continue reading below as SOS Cleanroom covers some good cleanroom maintenance practices and other relevant information to keeping your cleanroom environment in top shape. One of the best ways to keep surfaces 100 percent sanitized is through our cleanroom dry wipers or cleanroom pre-wetted wipers. Any of the Texwipe products that we sell are also very effective for routinely cleaning surfaces. To learn more, shop our cleanroom wipers here.

Different Classes Of Cleanrooms

As our readers very well understand, cleanrooms are highly controlled manufacturing areas that are designed to limit the amount of contamination in a given area. Federal standard 209E classifies cleanrooms by the concentration of air particles 0.5 micron in diameter or larger. For comparison’s sake, an average human hair is about 50 microns in diameter.

A Class 1000 cleanroom, as it is implied in its name, has fewer than 1000 of these air particles in a cubic foot of air. A Class 10 cleanroom, as you can guess, has fewer than 10 particles less than or equal to 0.5 micron in diameter per cubic foot. While these numbers are fairly simple and obvious, it is imperative that the given class of a cleanroom is understood and adhered to.

Filtering Air Particles

While wearing cleanroom gowns does a great deal to eliminate the issue of human contamination, filtering the air in a cleanroom is also crucial. Cleanroom environments are always strictly controlled and use high-efficiency particulate attenuation (HEPA) filters in order to remove airborne particles, as well as ionize grids to neutralize static that attracts particles. Heating, ventilating and air conditioning (HVAC) equipment is also used to exhaust air and particles outside the cleanroom and maintain positive cleanroom air pressure.

Work And Movement Can Compromise A Cleanroom

In the context of a cleanroom, work is a dirty process. Any physical movement including things like walking, lifting, vacuuming or even wiping down workstations can create additional particles. Other things like tools and various equipment can also produce organic contaminants from sources like lubricants. While automated robotics and other equipment that doesn’t require maintenance are typically preferred inside cleanrooms, they are not always feasible depending on the manufacturing situation.

Regular Maintenance Procedures Are Highly Important

Performing standard cleaning maintenance procedures on a daily, weekly, monthly and even quarterly basis does a lot to help ensure quality cleanroom compliance. Air filtration is key - positive-pressure air should be running at full-flow in a Class 10 cleanroom for at least half an hour prior to cleaning to ensure clean, fresh air is circulating in the room.

When it comes to cleaning a cleanroom (we know, we’re getting pretty meta here), it starts at the highest point and works toward the floor. Every surface, corner, and ledge is first vacuumed and then damp-wiped with a cleanroom wipe. Even the direction that cleanroom operators wipe in matters. Operators should wipe surfaces one way - either downward or away from themselves because a “back-and-forth” scrubbing motion can actually create more particles than it removes! Clearly, you can tell that proper cleanroom maintenance is no easy task.

Standard Cleanroom Reclassification

Some specialized cleanroom equipment must also be maintained, including HEPA filters and ionizing grids. Vacuuming HEPA filters every 3 months removes particles, and recalibrating and cleaning ionizing grids every six months ensures the proper ion release rate.

Cleanrooms should be reclassified every six months by confirming that the air particle count meets the cleanroom class designation. This is highly important because a cleanroom can change - while it is a highly controlled and stable environment, one cannot assume that the particle threshold for the cleanroom will remain the same.

Get The Right Products For The Right Cleanroom

For cleanrooms of multiple classes, SOS Cleanroom is your comprehensive solution for all cleanroom products including cleanroom dry wipers, cleanroom pre-wetted wipers, a range of Texwipe products, cleanroom mop buckets, TX1009 wipers, and more! If you have any questions, get in touch with us today