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Cleanroom Maintenance: Sanitation via Filtration

Posted on May 29, 2013

As featured in Controlled Environments Magazine

Written by Rob Decker, Application Engineer, Nilfisk Industrial Vacuums, a division of Nilfisk-Advance, Inc.

Contamination control is vital for maintaining cleanroom environments. Pharmaceutical and semiconductor companies require especially stringent maintenance and sanitation programs to meet demanding standards for air quality, room design, and operation, such as those set by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO). ISO 14644-1, which defines guidelines for the classification of air cleanliness determined by the permissible particle size and levels of concentration, forces manufacturing facilities to maintain high standards for a contaminant-free facility to protect their equipment, products, and employees. Operational costs, long-standing cleaning procedures, and lack of proper equipment can stymie a company’s efforts to build a comprehensive maintenance program.

Ultimately, this can create opportunities for contaminants to enter cleanrooms and negatively impact operational efficiency, employee health and safety, and the company’s bottom line. Facilities can significantly reduce the risk of contamination, however, by utilizing HEPA-filtered, portable industrial vacuums for general maintenance and hazardous material spills. These vacuums are integral tools for ensuring a cleanroom is free of contaminants and for reclaiming active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs).

GM80CR CEILINGAs part of a regular maintenance program, vacuums keep particles safely contained and ensure optimal air quality.

Portable industrial vacuums are effective tools for cleanroom applications that require personnel to safely remove contaminants from controlled environments. Any foreign matter, typically particulate, that detracts from a product’s performance is considered a contaminant, and traditional processes for cleanroom facilities focus on preventing one of three categories: airborne, fluid, or transfer particulates. While wipe-down methods and dusting systems are common practice, vacuuming is an efficient and effective method to thoroughly clean these environments.

Read the entire article, here.

For more information on vacuums for cleanrooms and the pharmaceutical industry, visit www.pharmaceuticalvacuum.com.