multiple rugs as well as sticky mats to prevent dirt
from entering. This is also when you begin to conduct particle counts.
In the second stage, control and limit access to
the cleanroom area and establish a smock room/
air lock for entry/exit with an air cleaner. Workers
must wear booties in the area and use sticky mats
on floors. There should be no wood, cardboard, or
paper allowed in the area. A HEPA vac is required
for all cutting/drilling in the cleanroom, and the air
systems should be on, but not the FFUs.
The third stage, which is for punching and finishing details, is the most restrictive. It includes all
the precautions of Stage Two, plus several additional
steps. At this stage, access is limited and workers
must be fully smocked, including wearing lab coat
or coveralls, hair/beard nets, booties, and gloves, and
they must use a designated smock room. In addition
to operating the MUA system, recirculation air is
continuously cleaning the air.
Meeting all the specific requirements for a cleanroom does increase construction costs, but this var-ies based on the type of cleanroom, with the tightest,
most restrictive rooms costing the most. On average,
the price range for cleanrooms ranges from $1,000
per square foot for a Class 1 room down to below
$200 per square foot for a Class 100,000 room.
When constructing a cleanroom, it’s important
to not be intimidated by the process. In the end, it’s
still just construction. By following the plans and
specs while adhering the guidelines for each phase
the cleanroom construction can be executed successfully and with few problems. To facilitate the process,
remember that preconstruction is extra important,
so develop a detailed schedule early and manage
procurement carefully. Clearly communicate the
construction schedule to all parties to keep everyone
on the same page. Be prepared to manage contingencies, things will change so be flexible and adaptable.
Constructing cleanrooms is challenging, requiring
careful attention to specific details in both design and
construction procedure. Using the accepted industry
standards and the UM as blueprints, however, will
facilitate the successful completion of a cleanroom.
Working in partnership with the cleanroom operator
on the specific design assures that the resulting room
will meet the needs of end users and enable them to
achieve a desired ROI from the operating space.
Matt Strong, PE, LEED AP, is President of C1S Group,
a full-service professional engineering and construction
firm based in Dallas. Matt has more than 26 years of
experience in the design and installation of mechanical
and electrical systems. www.c1sinc.com
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