Cleanrooms, a controlled environment with low-levels of pollutants, can typically be found in manufacturing or scientific research. When building and setting up a cleanroom in your own facility, it is important to take into consideration the sensitive environment of these rooms.
The High Cost of Clean: Cleanrooms in a Nutshell
To fully understand the cost and gravity of what it takes to build and maintain a cleanroom, let’s look at an example of the real cost of building one.
In 1988, Yale University spent $1.2 million to build their original cleanroom. Its size was relatively small—2,600 feet, or about a quarter of the size of your average high school gymnasium. (They later spent $8 million in 2009 on renovations.)
For perspective: back in 1988, the median American income was just south of $25K, the average rent in U.S. cost $420 a month, and filling up your gas tank cost under ten bucks.
Because of its strict requirements, high cost for building and maintenance, and the importance
of the work done in these facilities, a cleanroom necessitates a level of caution higher than most other worksites. To contaminate these highly sensitive areas is to possibly corrupt or disrupt production or research, so it’s crucial to take necessary steps to preserve the integrity of the cleanroom.
Visual Reminders for PPE and General Regulations
It’s important to give workers and visitors plenty of reminders and warnings of the unique nature of the cleanroom, and what specific equipment or apparel—cleanroom suits, gloves, etc.—is required before entering, as well as what is prohibited. This can be accomplished with warning signs and labels in appropriate and conspicuous locations.
While each cleanroom is unique to their facility, there are many common PPE and procedural warnings that are often deployed in most all cleanrooms covering topics such as:
- Personal items and actions prohibited/excepted
- No eating, drinking, chewing gum or smoking notices
- No cosmetics
- Appropriate garment/PPE warnings
- Approved/prohibited items for cleanroom use
- Cleaning processes
- Contamination warnings
- Entry and exit processes
- Chemical storage and handling warnings
- Safety warnings and protocols
Use the Proper Products for the Environment
It’s important to use labels designed specifically for cleanrooms.
The sensitivities of cleanrooms call for special products, ones that are engineered specifically to perform in low-humidity, static-prone environments. Labels used in cleanrooms must be made from material that won’t crack or peel and consequently corrupt the integrity of the room.
LabelTac® printers and supply can provide tough, high-quality labels built to thrive in these environments, which are known for causing defects in printed text in graphics.
LabelTac® ESD Supply was designed specifically for low-humidity and static-prone environments. ESD Supply prints crisp and clean, to ensure labels are easy to read and will provide stellar performance in these stress- intensive environments.