Laminar Air Flow in the Pharmaceutical Industry

Laminar Air Flow in the Pharmaceutical Industry: Why It’s Important and How to Control It.

Laminar air flow in the pharmaceutical industry must be tested and validated to ensure the safety on workers and avoid contaminating specimens and product.

Laminar Air Flow Testing and Control

Laminar Air Flow Profiles are important in the pharmaceutical industry because proper airflow provides protection to both personnel and product (or specimen). Laminar air flow is a uniform flow of liquids and gases (air being one) where the liquid or gas moves in parallel layers thereby preventing turbulence and interference between them. In pharmacies and laboratories, laminar flow equipment such as laminar flow hoods, bio-safety cabinets, and chemical fume hoods minimize the risk of contamination to the worker or the specimen. In the case of a compounding pharmacy, the “specimen” could be a product such as a hazardous drug. In other laboratories, the specimen could be infectious particles, bacteria and viruses, unicellular, and multi-cellular organisms … hazardous substances requiring work to be done in laminar flow protection devices.

Controlling laminar air flow is integral to USP 800 compliance and all pharmacies should be familiar with the requirements.

Testing and controlling laminar air flow in the pharmacy or laboratory can be managed with a number of DegreeC instruments designed specifically for your industry. Here’s how we can help:

  • Solutions for Monitoring and Data Logging of Air Pressure – ensuring negative pressure in the C-SCA (containment segregated compounding area)
  • Full-time Tracking of Air Velocities within Bio-safety Cabinets (BSC), Chemical Fume Hoods, and Exhaust Systems – ensuring that air movement never falls below user-defined thresholds
  • Provide Alarm Capability – by retrofitting bio-safety cabinets and fume hoods with a fast, reliable, and affordable way to monitor airflow safety and achieve OSHA or NSF-49/ANSI compliance
  • Laboratory-grade fog instruments, designed specifically for sanitary and electronic environments, you can now reveal the movement patterns and flow paths of air in your ventilation system. Unlike smoke sticks and carbon dioxide, these propylene-glycol based fog generators leave no residue and can be used to trace the ambient flow profiles of air to validate compliance in ventilation systems and equipment.
Laminar air flow profile diagram illustrating and ideal airflow without turbulence.

Laminar Air Flow Validation

Laminar air flow in the pharmaceutical industry can be tested and validated with smoke wand tests that show the performance of bio-safety cabinets and chemical fume hoods.

Consult with an Airflow Sensor Specialist

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Smoke generator wand tests are done in laboratories and pharmacies to validate the performance of biosafety cabinets and chemical fume hoods.