Cleanroom Technology – from Fabs to Abs

2015 is being proclaimed as the year of the wearable device. As our insatiable appetite is whetted by the lure of the latest shiny gizmo to measure our fitness, keep in touch with friends and download data at the touch of a button, the demand for micro and nano technology has risen at exponential levels necessitating MEMS manufacturers to deliver smaller, faster and financially accessible consumer products.

The manufacturing of many of today’s nano devices takes place in large cleanrooms where destructive airborne particles are controlled in vacuum enclosed spaces. A miniscule dust particle is all that is required to bring the latest smartphone to a spluttering halt.

Cleanroom Technology

Cleanroom technology dates back 50 years when an engineer at the Sandia National Laboratory in New Mexico, Willis Whitfield, invented the first cleanroom. His initial innovative thoughts to use fans to send outside air through filters into a room and then to remove that air back out again via exhaust pipes marked the birth of a billion dollar industry.

Picture1Today’s cleanroom must guard against contamination by people, machinery, tools, liquids and processes. Air flow direction, rates, pressure, temperature and humidity are rigidly controlled. Cleanroom classification is governed to a very high standard, and has to comply with a rigid criteria and certified with an ISO accreditation. Determined by permitted cubic feet of air, clean rooms are divided into the following classifications Class 1, 10, 100, 1000, 10,000 and 100,000. Therefore, a Class 1000 cleanroom can have no more than 1000 particles of 0.5 microns or larger per cubic feet.

Early adopters of cleanroom technology were hospitals in a bid to reduce infections. Nowadays cleanrooms are utilised within microelectronics, pharmaceutical, healthcare, manufacturing, automotive, military, telecommunications, semiconductors and R&D fulfilling a cosmic and diverse range of industry technology requirements.

(Image courtesy of Sandia Labs)



Cleanroom Technology Market 

Cleanroom technology has benefited from stable growth for the last few years and the market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 5.5% for the five year period to 2020 from USD $3,761.9 million to USD $ 4,290.1 million. This growth will be primarily led by an increase in the development of new biologics, growing demand for sterilized pharmaceutical formulations, and the increasing need for cleanrooms within the medical device industry.

memsstar’s Cleanroom

cleanroom technology solutions for R&D and MEMS development from memsstar Europe

memstar’s European headquarters houses a state of the art 300 sq m Class 1000 cleanroom which has been purpose built for manufacturing in addition to providing clean facilities and service areas. Specialising in the remanufacturing of used semiconductor equipment for etch and deposition we can repurpose, upgrade, final test and compliance test equipment by Applied Materials, Lam and Novellus. Our own proprietary range of ORBISTM platforms enable advanced processing capability from research to commercial R&D and high volume manufacturing.

For information on our cleanroom technology, facilities and products and services provided please contact us today on T: +44 1506 243203 or E:

memsstar: Cleanroom Technology solutions supporting MEMS manufacturers and research and development.

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