When entering a controlled environment, cleanroom garments are critical. Employees of clean environments such as compounding pharmacies, chemotherapy prep rooms, and electronics manufacturing industries rely on protective apparel including Dupont™ Cleanroom Tyvek® sterile suits, lab coats, aprons, boots, hoods and gloves to eliminate contaminants from entering their workspace and adhere to cleanroom safety guidelines.
To limit human-generated contamination in cleanrooms, please refer to the Garment System Considerations for Cleanrooms and Other Controlled Environments created by Working Group 003 of the Institute of Environmental Sciences and Technology (IEST) Contamination Control Division (WG-CC003). These recommended practices help determine the proper types and levels of gowning needed for various industries.
Disposable Cleanroom Garments
In particle free environments, it’s best when you can rely on disposable cleanroom garments. Any contaminants from the cleanroom are disposed of or processed (as a hazardous material if necessary), so there’s no opportunity for possible secondary contamination on re-entry to the cleanroom.
Many disposable cleanroom garments are made from polypropylene, SMS, microporous or Dupont™ Cleanroom Tyvek® material. The garments may have anti-static properties and also provide a barrier to protect the wearer against harmful diseases such as ebola, malaria, and hantavirus.
Disposable cleanroom garments are the preferred gowning method when working with acids, alkali, toxic substances or biohazardous products.
Eventually all disposable products need to be replaced and improper cleanroom habits increase the probability of failure. To keep the environment clean and the wearer safe from exposure every cleanroom employee should be well trained.
Reusable Cleanroom Garments
For some larger companies, having an adequate supply of disposable apparel on hand is cost-prohibitive. That’s when it’s time to consider reusable cleanroom garments that can be laundered and worn multiple times.
Protective suits, smocks, head coverings and other cleanroom apparel can become uncomfortable when worn every day. Reusable garments are often designed to fit the wearer’s body shape and can last through multiple uses.
When not working with hazardous materials, these wash and wear garments are a viable option. The standard process to clean the clothing include the use of gamma radiation for initial sterilization, nonionic surfactants, water rinsing (using filtered, softened, and/or reverse osmosis water) and an 18 meg-ohm, 0.22µ filtered deionized final water rinse. A one pass HEPA/ULPA filtered air drying system is utilized to dry the garments. Finally, the clothing gets sealed in static dissipative bags.
Most industries utilizing reusable garments rent the pieces from an approved provider who also offers laundering services. Although this is a more environmentally friendly option that reduces landfill waste, it can become costly and time intensive to coordinate for large manufacturers.
If your industry requires a critical clean environment, cleanroom garments provide a barrier, so micron-sized particles don’t enter the workspace. Cleanroom World carries a wide variety of disposable and launderable suits, sleeves, coverall, frocks, and shoes. Keep your ISO 5, 6, 7 and 8 cleanroom employees and products safe. Shop online for cleanroom garments today!