Mandatory Steps for Effective Cleanroom Design

Many manufacturing processes need the very stringent environmental conditions that can only be provided by a cleanroom.

Because of the complex mechanical systems and high construction, operating, and energy costs that are associated with cleanrooms, it is important to perform the cleanroom design in a methodical way. When designing and building your cleanroom it is important to determine the key factors like the level of people/material flow, space cleanliness classification, space pressurization, space supply airflow, space air exfiltration, space air balance, variables to be evaluated, mechanical system selection, heating/cooling load calculations, and support space requirements.

It is important to evaluate the people and material flow within the cleanroom suite. Cleanroom workers are a cleanroom’s largest contamination source and all critical processes should be isolated from personnel access doors and pathways.

The most critical spaces should have a single access to prevent the space from being a pathway to other, less critical spaces. Some pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical processes are susceptible to cross-contamination from other pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical processes. Process cross-contamination needs to be carefully evaluated for raw material inflow routes and containment, material process isolation, and finished product outflow routes and containment.

To be able to select a cleanroom classification, it is important to know the primary cleanroom classification standard and what the particulate performance requirements are for each cleanliness classification. Your manufacturing process may need a more stringent cleanliness class depending upon its unique requirements.
Maintaining either positive or negative air pressure, in relation to adjoining dirtier cleanliness classification spaces, is essential in preventing contaminants from infiltrating into a cleanroom. If the room layout is just a bit more complex and complicated you might end up piling up on the running fees just so your room can maintain the running specs.

The majority of cleanrooms are under positive pressure, resulting in planned air exfiltrating into adjoining spaces having lower static pressure and unplanned air exfiltration through electrical outlets, light fixtures, window frames, door frames, wall/floor interface, wall/ceiling interface, and access doors. It is important to understand rooms are not hermetically sealed and do have leakage.

A number of variables affect a cleanroom’s mechanical system layout: space availability, available funding, process requirements, cleanliness classification, required reliability, energy cost, building codes, and local climate. Unlike normal A/C systems, cleanroom A/C systems have substantially more supply air than needed to meet cooling and heating loads.

Cleanrooms are like fighter jets. When properly designed and built, they are highly efficient performance machines. When poorly designed and built, they operate poorly and are unreliable. Cleanrooms have many potential pitfalls, and supervision by an engineer with extensive cleanroom design experience can save you and your facility a lot of architectural, constructional and labor fees. Give us a call now 800.418.9289 and let us know how we can help out with your project.

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