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Laminar flow clean benches are not biosafety cabinets. They protect the product or research from contamination, but they do not protect personnel or the environment. The clean bench discharges high efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filtered air across the work surface and toward the user. The air flow can be directed either horizontally or vertically.
For this reason, biohazardous, radioactive, chemical, toxic, mutagenic, and carcinogenic agents must not be used in a laminar flow clean bench. All laminar flow clean benches on campus should have a warning label (Displayed Below) adhered to them stating that the above agents should not be used in these units.
Laminar flow clean benches provide product protection only and must not be used in conjunction with any hazardous materials due to their inability to protect the personnel using them or the environment. A properly used biosafety cabinet will, however, protect personnel, the environment, and the work itself. Because of the flexibility these cabinets provide, the University Biosafety Committee and the Biosafety Officer recommend the purchase of Biosafety Cabinets for both purposes. The committee discourages the acquisition of additional laminar flow benches on campus. If anyone wishes to purchase/acquire a laminar flow clean bench, it must be approved by the Biosafety Officer.
For further information, questions, or help in selecting the proper cabinet for your application please contact Kathleen Schmidt or call 831-3123.