Why Industrial Static Control is Essential in Cleanrooms and Laboratory Settings
February 6th, 2019 by Smart Fog
Working in a laboratory, it’s important to constantly monitor conditions such as temperature, pressure and humidity levels, as those can all affect the lab equipment and samples. Because of the nature of cleanrooms, they often create a low-humidity environment that leads to more static electricity. Since static electricity can lead to contamination and damage within cleanrooms and laboratories, industrial static control is essential in minimizing those hazards.
Optimal Humidity Levels
Both low and high humidity levels can cause expensive damage to laboratory equipment. Since equipment can cost thousands of dollars, maintaining optimal humidity levels within your laboratory or cleanroom is crucial. If humidity is too high, you may notice condensation building up on pieces of equipment, tables, or other surfaces. The temperature in your cleanroom only needs to rise a little bit for that to happen. Even temporarily fluctuations in your HVAC system can cause those potentially major issues.
On the other hand, low humidity can be just as detrimental. For instance, in the winter the air becomes much drier. That can lead to more static electricity around the laboratory. Not only can electric shocks damage electrical components, but they can also lead to contamination in your cleanroom. Electrostatic attraction (ESA) causes statically charged particles to stick to objects and surfaces with the opposite charge. Overall, to reduce the risks of contamination and damage, the optimum humidity level for your laboratory or cleanroom is 50% relative humidity.
Reducing Static Electricity
Many materials used in cleanrooms are excellent insulators that can create and hold static charges for a long time. For example, humans, water, and silicon can all carry slight positive or negative charges. Since lab technicians often wear insulating shoes, they themselves can develop and hold a charge. The static buildup will release as soon as contact is made with another object in the laboratory or cleanroom.
There are a few ways to control static within your cleanroom, and humidifiers are a valuable asset for your laboratory to invest in. Industrial static control is easier with laboratory humidifiers because they allow you to focus on other elements, without having to manually adjust the humidity. When your cleanroom is below optimal humidity, it can automatically increase the humidity level to combat potential static electricity charges.
Working in your laboratory, you want to be able to focus on the product or project at hand, not on small issues like static charges. Protect your laboratory and ward off expensive, humidity-related issues before they arise! Check out Smart Fog’s industrial static control products today to find the humidifier that’s right for you.