A clean room is an artificially created hyper-sterile environment used in medical and scientific research facilities. They are intended to create an environment as free of pollutants and impurities as possible during the course of delicate procedures. Clean rooms are strictly regulated, and have very clear protocols for exit and entry that must be followed, as well as proper clothing and environmental controls.
Personal hygiene is extremely important when entering a clean room. Human beings cause 75 percent of the impurities found within a clean room and therefore the majority of the measures taken must affect them. Before even arriving at the clean room, a person must have showered before coming over. Any problems with dermatitis and dandruff must be controlled. Smoking before entering a clean room is prohibited. No chewing gum or tobacco can be taken into the clean room. No cosmetics can be worn in the clean room, and all facial hair must be covered.
Proper attire is also extremely important. First off, everyone entering a clean room must wear shoes that cover their entire foot. All outer clothing, such as jackets, hats or fuzzy sweaters, must be removed. It is a good idea to generally avoid any clothing that sheds fabric in any way. No sleeveless shirts, shorts, skirts or jewelry that could potentially damage or puncture any of the specialized clean room garments are allowed.
Once the person entering the clean room has the proper attire, they can undergo gowning. Every person entering a clean room must wear a hair cover, a hood, shoe covers, coveralls (or a "bunny suit"), gloves, a face mask and safety glasses. The subject must put the coveralls on first, followed by the shoe covers. Next, he puts on the safety glasses, the plastic gloves and the face cover, and then raises his or her hood.
Entering and Leaving
People must enter and leave the lab as quickly as possible. They must keep any sneezes, coughs or nose blows as discrete as possible, or even leave the room beforehand if they can. The amount of things inside the lab must be kept to an absolute minimum. Only one person should enter or exit the lab at a time. Everything kept inside the clean room must remain inside the clean room at all times. Nothing from outside the clean room that is not authorized can be brought into the clean room.
All chemicals used in the clean room must be properly stored. Users of chemicals must always read the MSDS for every chemical they use. Any large amounts of chemicals must be kept outside the clean room.
The following materials are not considered proper for a clean room: wood pulp- based products, styrofoam, powders, erasers, pencils or felt-tipped pens and anything that easily shreds or dissipates.