Whether it’s because of advances in science and technology, growing regulation, or increased competi- tion, companies and organizations throughout the world continue to
face greater needs for controlled environments in their
facilities. Oftentimes these needs arise very quickly and
require solutions that can be implemented in a very
timely manner. Such situations have spurred growth
and innovation in the development of new modular
cleanroom systems. Today’s facility operators can now
choose from numerous modular systems to match their
Regardless of which type of modular system one
chooses, the benefits of these systems have remained
relatively consistent over the years. They feature a quick
and clean installation process, consistent product quality, reduced construction time, certain tax advantages,
and “green” benefits resulting from a reduced material
waste. As the market evolves, however, new systems are
being designed for specific applications and industries.
The variety of panels and interchangeable components
to choose from grows as well.
In today’s market, modular cleanroom systems can
typically be categorized into four main styles: softwall
cleanrooms, structural post and panel systems, specialty
systems which include framing or partitioning, and
aseptic systems. Each of these systems were designed by
modular cleanroom manufacturers in order to satisfy
the particular needs of an industry or application.
Softwall cleanroom systems
Softwall cleanrooms provide an economical solution
to applications requiring light environmental control.
These cleanrooms are typically comprised of a metal
framing system, flexible vinyl curtain walls, and a
number of fan filter modules at the top of the structure
to control particulate and air flow. Due to their basic
design, softwall cleanrooms can be erected very quickly
with minimized labor requirements, offering an ease of
mobility that other structures do not provide.
Advances in mounting methods, closure, and
fastening systems have made it easier to incorporate
softwall cleanrooms into a variety of applications as
well as within other cleanroom systems. They can
be utilized within larger cleanroom environments as
partitions to separate areas or to create cleaner interior zones. As softwall systems continue to evolve,
many manufacturers now offer transparent, tinted,
opaque, and anti-static curtain options, furthering
the list of applications for which these structures can
Softwall cleanrooms offer a flexible and economical solution for lower level classifications and basic
environmental control pertaining to GMP rooms,
inspection rooms, manufacturing areas, and machinery
Structural post and panel systems
The core product for many modular manufacturers and
suppliers consists of an “all-purpose” system that can be
utilized for a variety of applications from GMP rooms
to specific ISO classes. These systems offer a high level of
versatility and can be used to outfit existing facilities or
to create larger freestanding envelope structures to house
separate compartmentalized processes.
These cleanroom systems can offer further flexibility by incorporating a panel-post design. This type
of configuration offers the integration of a variety of
different wall panels and cores including aluminum
honeycomb, polystyrene, stainless steel, fiberglass reinforced plastic (FRP), and other selections based on the
intended application and needs of the cleanroom.
All-purpose cleanroom systems are used in a variety
of applications and ISO classifications including quality
control enclosures or inspection rooms, medical device
packaging areas, USP 797 compounding labs or equipment, and machinery enclosures.
A discussion of the four main styles of modular cleanrooms.
for tools and equipment.