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High Heat Load Containment for Johnson Matthey

Johnson Matthey. a global speciality chemicals and sustainable technologies organisation, needed a safe fume cupboard solution to manage high heat loads. It turned to Clean Air, the specialist in containment, fume cupboards and extract systems. Clean Air designed, manufactured and installed customised high heat load fume cupboards at its Technology Centre in Reading, UK. These bespoke fume cupboards exceeded the requirements for BS EN 14175 Parts 3, 6 and 7.

The Brief

The analytical team at the Johnson Matthey Technology Centre regularly prepares samples using strong acids. They use these techniques to achieve dissolution and enable precise and accurate determination of the sample composition. Large industrial hot plates are located in their fume cupboards. Consequently, the heat from these disturbs the airflow in a standard fume cupboard. In turn, this compromises fume containment.

“The safety of our scientists is of premium importance to us,” says Martin Allwright, Technology Centre Site Services Manager. “We’re creating the sustainable technologies of the future. The research, development and quality control we conduct in our laboratories often involves boiling solutions and evaporating concentrated acids.

“We needed a solution that would protect our scientists. In addition, we wanted to provide them with a safe, generous working space which contributes to a healthy laboratory environment.”

The Clean Air Solution

The Clean Air design team applied its considerable industry experience and technology expertise to the issue. As a result, they created a solution that offers excellent fume containment. Premium APEX-2 fume cupboards were modified to contain and extract any potential leakage caused by buoyant hot air. The designers also incorporated a combination sash option for added operator protection and flexible access.

Clean Air invited representatives from the Johnson Matthey Technology Centre to its in-house type-testing facility. What better way to assure their visitors that the tests were being professionally undertaken to fully meet BS EN 14175? Here, they witnessed the testing of their bespoke fume cupboards first hand. As they were keen to accurately replicate the conditions in their laboratories, their own industrial hot plates were used during many of the tests.

The Result

The results of the fume cupboard type-testing exceeded BS EN 14175 Parts 3 and 6 when tested at ambient temperature. They also exceeded Part 7 for High Heat and Acidic Load. The key Robustness of Containment Protection Factor (PFR) reading was 926,000 at 5 kw, and 674,000 using the Technology Centre’s equipment.

“Working with us, Clean Air designed fume cupboards to address our needs and deliver evidence-based safety assurance,” adds Martin. “Our scientists have confidence that they are operating in safe conditions in a potentially hazardous environment. The choice of combination sashes has provided an improved operator experience with more flexible and safer access into the working space. It also contributes to lowering our energy consumption. The system as installed has also reduced noise levels over the previous installation.”

Custom Fume Cupboards for Specific Applications

Clean Air regularly undertakes the design of bespoke fume cupboards for specific applications. With its own in-house type-testing facility, these designs can be tested to meet BS EN 14175.  For more information on high heat load fume cupboards, or to discuss your application, contact our fume cupboard design specialists.

What our customer said about this project…

“Working with us, Clean Air designed fume cupboards to address our needs and deliver evidence-based safety assurance. Our scientists have confidence that they are operating in safe conditions in a potentially hazardous environment.”

Martin Allwright, Johnson Matthey Technology Centre Site Services Manager