The goal of a cleanroom is to keep the airborne particle count below a specified threshold. We use the methods listed below to maintain our cleanroom:
- Air handling: Air is constantly recirculated and filtered to remove particles.
- Positive pressure: The air pressure is kept highest in the cleanest areas and lower in less clean areas. Because air flows from high pressure to low pressure, airborne dust is swept out of the cleanroom and outside dust is prevented from floating in.
- Physical barriers: Physical barriers such as walls, windows and doors are the first line of defense against dust. The cleanroom is not ‘air-tight’ but openings to the outside world are kept to a minimum; primarily these openings consist of the gaps under and around the doors leading into the cleanroom. Positive air pressure prevents dust from coming in through these gaps.
- Cleanroom Garments*: All cleanroom users are required to where cleanroom garments which trap dust particles inside, these consist of a hood, coveralls, boot covers and gloves.
- Sticky Mats: Adhesive mats are used at entryways. When users walk across the mat, dirt and dust on the bottoms of their shoes are left stuck to the mat.
- Limit Outside Items: Many common items like paper must be kept out of the cleanroom because they generate dust. All items that are allowed in must be cleaned with cleanroom grade wipes.
- Cleaning Protocol: The cleanroom is cleaned on a regular basis.
*Each user of the facility is provided with his or her own cleanroom garments.