Dependable filtered airflow is critical to maintaining protection of users from volatile chemicals or fine powders used within their process workflows. Applications categories include:
- Any process using common lab solvents, including formalin, ammonia, inorganics or organic solvents
- Weighing of hazardous powder or compounds
- Manipulation of potentially harmful organics, including bacteria and fungi
- Automated sample processing, culture, and analysis
All ductless operator protection cabinets combine negative pressure airflow to remove contaminants from the work area, and either activated carbon, high efficiency particulate air (HEPA), or a combination of both, to filter return-air to the laboratory environment. Unlike ducted fume and particulate units, which require connection to an external building ventilation system, removing conditioned lab air which must be replaced with new, ductless solutions recycle air within the lab. Environmental energy costs are greatly diminished, reducing facility cost of ownership and carbon footprint.
Chemical fumes and odours are removed using carbon filtration media. High performance laboratory grade carbon filter media is available impregnated with different additives to ensure the best possible retention capacities and filtration performance for specific solvents in use. Use of environmentally friendly and biodegradable carbon additives is essential, as traditional treatments required the use of potentially toxic and carcinogenic inorganic chemicals with limited performance benefit. The type of carbon used is also critical, with careful sourcing and supply chain management designed to prevent media changes over time.
Applicable standard for fume filtration and containment include:
- British Standard BS 7989:2001 (for filter efficiency and retention capacity)
- French Standard AFNOR NFX 15-211:2009 - Class 2 (for filter retention capacity)
- US Standard ASHRAE 110: (for containment)
- Canadian Standard CSA Z316.5 (for containment)
Particulates, including both chemical powders and biologicals such as viruses and bacterial and fungal spores, are removed from the airstream by HEPA filters, comprised of mats of randomly arranged synthetic fibers. This filtration media captures a wide range of particle sizes. To protect filters from loading due to dust, pre-filtration is used to eliminate particles of 5.0 microns or larger to an efficiency of 92%
Applicable standards for particulate filtration and containment include:
- ISO16890 – pre filtration
- EN 1822 - HEPA H14 filtration media standard eliminates particles 0.3 microns or larger to an efficiency of 99.995%.
- EN 1822 - ULPA U16 Standard is available as an optional upgrade and has an efficiency of 99.999% for particle sizes of 0.1 – 0.3 microns MPPS (Most Penetrating Particle Size)
In all Operator Protection units, good cabinet design is important, to ensure uniform airflow through the filter. Filter casing design is also crucial, to prevent fume or particulate breakthrough and resulting return of contaminants to the lab. In addition to superior design, Caron also offers periodic performance validation testing to protect users from the results of on-site component damage or filter saturation.