Laminar hoods are purified work environments in the form of small chambers used widely in Biology and Chemistry related research workspaces and industries. It helps to maintain a clean and sterile environment or a chamber of such kind in which you can do your microbial, fungal or virus-related works without any hint of contamination. This is the greatest invention which prevents all kinds of contaminations as well. Some microbes can be harmful for humans with which you might have to work in the lab as the purpose of your research. These include several viral pathogens, parasites and so on. If you want to set your lab up then a laminar hood or flow system is very vital. That is why you should learn about this apparatus thoroughly. Let us focus on the methods regarding how to learn aboutlaminar flow hoods.
Why do you require a laminar air flow?
Laminar air flow systems provide a clean and contaminant free environment to work. It is highly necessary in those cases where you require completely isolated and contaminant free surrounding. It also helps to contain infectious microbes or inoculums inside the chamber which is very helpful for those research labs that work on human pathogens and viruses.
Working principle of a laminar flow system:
The most basic step regarding learning about any machine is learning about the working principle of it. This enables you to have enough insights about the machine itself. It also enables the preparation of a budget for that particular apparatus. Some instruments do not need to be of top quality in your lab as they are accessory but a laminar air flow is absolutely crucial for the proper functioning of a lab. The laminar flow systems contain the spread of these microbes entirely in them. Hence, they have an immense role to promote a sanitary environment by ensuring a constant air flow and filtration of microbes. The laminar air flow systems work with a revolutionary air purification system known as HEPA or High Efficiency Particulate Air filter, which makes it an efficient purification system.
Different classes of laminar air flows to know about:
Proper knowledge about an apparatus is required before ordering one. Laminar air flow systems are pretty versatile in nature as they have different types. Therefore, you should have enough insights with respect to their design and purpose for a better understanding about the machine itself. The Class I Laminar Hoods are made for basic biosafety related works. The second class on the other hand are made to create sterile environments that meet the Biosafety levels 1,2, and 3. The third and final class of laminar flow systems are designed to offer you the Biosafety Level 4 sterile and contaminant-free workspace. These are highly used in microbiological labs that work with highly infectious microbes and human pathogens.
Knowledge about maintaining the machine is highly essential:
Buying a laminar air flow does not only relieve all the responsibility it is the duty of all the lab members to maintain the laminar hood and to keep it in a prime condition. You should remember certain things while cleaning the laminar air flow. Remember to spray the disinfectant or alcohol on a sterile wipe or gauze and not directly on the work surface as the strong airflow will dry the disinfectant out quickly. Do the same thing for the internal hood parts like the sash and the frontal and back portions of it? But finish each position at once and then move on to the next one.
Decontaminating the flow hood:
You need to clean up all the debris first and put them separately in an autoclavable bag. Next focus on the spills and stains. The airflow gates should be removed and you should mop the work surface thoroughly with the respective disinfectant. After the cleaning part is completed, you need to decontaminate the airflow work surface with the UV-lamp which comes with the system. Switch on the UV-lamp for 10-15 minutes after the disinfectant has completely dried and you have finished the cleaning of the complete system. Do not forget to close the sash and switch off the airflow before switching the UV on.
So, these were some basic factors which might help you to increase your knowledge regarding a laminar flow system. These points should be beneficial in answering the question, ‘how to learn about laminar flow hoods’. Nevertheless, you should primarily focus on the working principle and maintenance of the machine as it will help you to work with it in a proper manner. All the best!!