Laboratory Containment & Ventilation Commissioning:
A Best Practices Guide
Stan Lengerich, Eli Lilly and
Forming a commissioning plan has become more difficult in an environment
of ever increasing toxicity of materials handled and wider choices
of testing methods. This paper will discuss the technology of performance
testing in the context of these challenges.
- Types of testing appropriate for various items of laboratory
- Fume hoods
- Biological safety cabinets
- Ventilated balance enclosures
- Local exhaust ventilation
- Custom ventilated enclosures
- A review of the latest thinking on containment tests will
be discussed and illustrated:
- Face velocity
- Smoke: high and low volume
- Tracer gas
- Specific air monitoring
- Further topics include the following:
- Post-performance testing: remediation before startup.
- Forming the commissioning plan: assignment of roles and
- Working along a timeline.
- Getting the right testing contractor or AE firm: what questions
- What can go wrong: How to turn a good fume hood into a hazard.
- The future of containment testing: comparing and developing
Lessons learned in ventilation containment testing:
- Face velocity, the old standby in performance testing is a poor
predictor of actual containment.
- A commissioning protocol rarely covers the commissioning effort
in sufficient detail.
- Your commissioning plan is as good as your testing contractor.
- Inadequate commissioning and remediation can become very expensive.
- Get a vendor who is interested in your needs and will be there
when something goes wrong.
This presentation acknowledges and supports the principles of Labs21
in worker safety assurance, progressive ideas in design, testing,
and maintenance, in conserving energy, and in safeguarding the environment.
Stan Lengerich is an Associate Engineering Consultant with
the Eli Lilly and Company Engineering Technology Center. He brings
more than 20 years experience working in and supporting research,
development, and manufacturing operations in the chemical and pharmaceutical
industries, and in academia. He received his master's degree in
Industrial Health from the University of Michigan, and he is a Certified
Industrial Hygienist. His primary focus at Lilly is on laboratory
containment with a special emphasis on lab ventilation systems.
Stan is a member of the ASHRAE 110 committee, which is rewriting
the standard for performance testing of fume hoods. He also is the
Lead Developer for the Labs21 "Best Practice Guideline"
for lab ventilation commissioning.
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