Welcome to the voting page for Controlled Environments’ third annual Readers' Choice Awards!

We need your help in determining the top innovations across different cleanroom product categories. Listed below are the finalists and their products. Please vote for the products that you feel are deserving of a 2017 Readers' Choice Award. You can vote for as many products as you want. The winners, based on your selections, will be featured in an upcoming issue of Controlled Environments.

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Apparel

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Hutch-Pak Polypropylene Spunbond Shoe Cover (Hutchins & Hutchins)

Hutch-Pak Polypropylene Spunbond Shoe Cover (Hutchins & Hutchins)

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Hutch-Pak Polypropylene Spunbond Shoe Cover (Hutchins & Hutchins)

The Hutch-Pak Polypropylene Spunbond Shoe Cover from Hutchins & Hutchins is manufactured from a lightweight, breathable, non-woven, spunbond polypropylene fabric with white, anti-skid traction markings on the sole. The entire shoe cover is 100 percent latex-free. It is a suitable shoe cover for transition between “clean” versus “unclean” areas. This disposable, single use shoe cover is made in Canada and has a classification of Class 1 Medical Device. With the creation process it is ultrasonically welded with triple elastic runs, allowing for a smooth and comfortable wrap around the footwear, aiding in tripping prevention. It features several attractive physical characteristics; a light blue color, white anti-skid traction markings, and is sold in two sizes, universal and jumbo — each having a wide opening for easy don and doff. This seamless design has an anti-static agent built into its high quality, low-linting fabric with reinforced corners and edges. Model number HHS-28033 is the Universal, 6.93-in. x 6.5-in. and comes packaged in three Easy-Open Perforated Bags at 50 pairs/bag, 150 pair/CS. Model number HHS-28035-2XL is the Jumbo (2XL), 18.5-in. X 7.3-in. and comes packaged in two Easy-Pullout Dispenser Boxes at 400 units/CS. The shoe cover can be used for applications such as medical and healthcare facilities, pharmaceutical compounding, laboratories, research and development, food service, tissue banking, semiconductors, biotechnology, optical, and any other critical environment industry needing contamination control.

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LiquidGuard Line of Protective Cleanroom Apparel (Valumax International)

LiquidGuard Line of Protective Cleanroom Apparel (Valumax International)

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LiquidGuard Line of Protective Cleanroom Apparel (Valumax International)

The LiquidGuard line of protective cleanroom apparel from Valumax International was developed to solve key comfort and protection issues that cause great concern among cleanroom workers and their managers. The line of limited-use coveralls, sleeve covers, shoe covers, and lab coats provides 67 percent more liquid-resistant protection than Tyvek apparel and 25 percent more breathability with 100 percent particle holdout versus 88 percent. The products are manufactured from a proprietary, microporous, non-linting material in a matrix fiber construction with an impermeable, laminate barrier coating for superior protection yet it also comes with a soft, smooth, clothing-like feel for all-day comfort rather than a rough, paper-like texture. The apparel line allows improved movement without risk of tearing at the back and/or knees when bending down or at the wrists when donning the coveralls, which would render the garments useless. To accommodate the unique size and shape of each cleanroom worker, the apparel incorporates elastic at the wrists, ankles, back, neck and around the opening of the hood. This adds room for movement but only where it's needed to prevent tearing without causing the billowing that attracts rips and snags.

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Microflex 93-260 Disposable Gloves (Ansell)

Microflex 93-260 Disposable Gloves (Ansell)

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Microflex 93-260 Disposable Gloves (Ansell)

Workers in laboratories and controlled environments often have to use precision instruments or handle delicate samples while protecting their hands against harsh chemicals. To address this need, Ansell offers the Microflex 93-260 — the thinnest chemical resistant disposable glove available on the market today. The gloves are made using a patent pending manufacturing process that brings together three innovative layers: a nitrile exterior protects against common organic solvents like dimethyl sulfoxide, isopropanol, hexane, and heptane; a middle layer made of soft neoprene protects against acids and bases like acetic, hydrochloric, nitric, and sulfuric acids and ammonium hydroxide; and an interior provides a dry feel and allows for easy donning and doffing. Together, these layers enable the glove to resist a wide range of chemicals for longer periods of time than traditional disposable gloves. The gloves meet ASTM D 3577, EN 420, EN 388 Abrasion Level 2, and EN374 performance standards. At just 7.8 mil (0.19 mm) thick, the gloves are more comfortable and allows for greater dexterity than thicker chemical gloves.

Cleanroom Consumables

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Texwipe Cleanroom AlphaMop (Hutchins & Hutchins)

Texwipe Cleanroom AlphaMop (Hutchins & Hutchins)

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Texwipe Cleanroom AlphaMop (Hutchins & Hutchins)

The Texwipe Cleanroom AlphaMop, offered by Hutchins & Hutchins, is a large flat mop suitable for applying and removing solutions, including common disinfectants and cleaners, to clean surfaces such as ceilings, floors, and walls. It is certified for ISO Class 3 to Class 7 environments and is available in standard and autoclave safe models. The polyester padded head allows for consistent contact with different surfaces, assuring the mop cover conform for consistent cleaning. The mop covers easily fit over the head, permitting a convenient, quick-change system to allow the user to replace covers and or pads frequently, adhering to strict cleaning protocols. The 100 percent polyester covers provide the cleanest substrates available for cleaning walls, floors, and ceilings; the low-profile, swivel head. and lightweight handles enables easier cleaning of floors, walls, ceilings and hard-to-reach areas. Model number TX7108 features a large 15-in. X 8-in. (38 cm x 20 cm) thermoplastic mop head, one 60-in. (1.5 m) fiberglass handle, two polyester pads, four fastening pins, six sample covers of TX7118, and six sample covers of TX7118M. Model number TX7108A is the Autoclave Safe version, having the same kit specifications, with the exception of the set of sample covers being STX7118 and TX7118M. The mop can be used for applications such as microelectronics, semiconductors, pharmaceuticals, biologics, medical devices, and compound pharmacy.

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Texwipe Sterile PolySat 70% Isopropyl Alcohol Pre-Wetted Polypropylene Wiper (Hutchins & Hutchins)

Texwipe Sterile PolySat 70% Isopropyl Alcohol Pre-Wetted Polypropylene Wiper (Hutchins & Hutchins)

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Texwipe Sterile PolySat 70% Isopropyl Alcohol Pre-Wetted Polypropylene Wiper (Hutchins & Hutchins)

Hutchins & Hutchins offers the Texwipe Sterile PolySat 70% Isopropyl Alcohol Pre-wetted Polypropylene Wiper, a soft, versatile wiping substrate used for alcohol wiping in sterile environments in pharmaceutical aseptic fill areas, biotechnology manufacturing facilities, microbiological laboratories, sterile suites and prep rooms. It is designed for sterile cleaning and wiping of equipment and environmental surfaces, requiring low solvent extractables and low particle generation, during and following the production flow. It optimizes solution usage and reduces spill potential, for easy cleanup of soiled surfaces. It is constructed from a 100 percent melt-blown polypropylene substrate that is pre-wetted with 70 percent isopropyl alcohol and 30 percent deionized water, filtered through a 0.2μm filter. It is packaged in a re-sealable FlexPack, eliminating problems associated with filtration, sterilization and mixing of alcohol and DI water. The packaging permits alcohol wipe down of exterior bag before introduction into sterile suites. Each is gamma irradiated to 10-6 Sterility Assurance Level, according to AAMI Guidelines. Independent quality control audits and done for sterility assurance and to assure quality of individual lots, through expiration dates and lot-specific information on each shipment; a certificate of Irradiation confirms radiation dosage and a certification of Compliance date are marked on each package. Model number TX3213 is 9-in. X 11-in. (23 cm x 28 cm), polypropylene, pre-wetted with 70 percent IPA and packaged 50 wipers/flexpack; 24 flexpacks/case. Model number TX3216 has the same features, but is packaged 20 wipers/flexpack; 24 flexpacks/case.

Monitoring/Instrumentation

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AeroTrak 9001 Cleanroom Condensation Particle Counter (TSI)

AeroTrak 9001 Cleanroom Condensation Particle Counter (TSI)

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AeroTrak 9001 Cleanroom Condensation Particle Counter (TSI)

The AeroTrak 9001 Cleanroom Condensation Particle Counter (CPC) from TSI enables electronic manufacturers to improve their production yields by allowing the detection and accurate monitoring of nanoscale particles (<100nm) in cleanroom manufacturing processes, as well as in high-pressure compressed gas systems with use of the AeroTrak 7950 High Pressure Diffuser (HPD). The particle counter is optimized for use measuring nanoparticles in ISO Class 1 and Class 2 environments. Its patented CPC design provides extremely low false count rates and ensures proper operation through extensive self-diagnostics. The system is the only water-based, laminar flow, high flow rate CPC on the market for confident monitoring of critical environments. With this, it has the ability to run continuously, 24/7, or to be used a standalone unit, requiring minimal maintenance to monitor key cleanroom manufacturing processes. Different from other high flow rate water-based CPCs, the unit does not use turbulent mixing, but minimizes particle losses and increasing count accuracy. Unlike alcohol or other non-water based CPCs, the particle counter does not introduce chemicals into cleanroom environments.

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ActiveCount100H Microbiological Sampler (Lighthouse Worldwide Solutions)

ActiveCount100H Microbiological Sampler (Lighthouse Worldwide Solutions)

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ActiveCount100H Microbiological Sampler (Lighthouse Worldwide Solutions)

Lighthouse Worldwide Solutions offers its ActiveCount100H Microbiological Sampler, which has both a HEPA filtered exhaust and a removable/autoclavable petri dish holder to solve cross-contamination issues. Microbiological sampling is a key part of any environmental monitoring program in the life sciences industry. One of the challenges the industry faces with current microbiological samplers is the potential for the sampler to cross contaminate sample locations. This cross contamination is often due to a lack of filtered exhaust and challenges faced with cleaning the instruments due to its design. The HEPA filtered exhaust ensures that a minimum of 99.97 percent of particles 0.3 micron and larger will be filtered out prior to exiting the sampler. The patent pending removable/autoclavable petri dish holder allows for easier and more effective cleaning of the internal sampling area. This feature will save both time and reduce the potential of cross contamination between sample locations. The system is ISO 14698 compliant with a d50 collection efficiency of 1 micron and exhaust ports designed to avoid re-aspiration of sampled air. With a 316L stainless steel enclosure, sampling head, and dust cover as well as HEPA filtered exhaust, the system will not contaminate critical environments.

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5302-AQM Particle Counter and Air Quality Monitor (Particles Plus Inc.)

5302-AQM Particle Counter and Air Quality Monitor (Particles Plus Inc.)

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5302-AQM Particle Counter and Air Quality Monitor (Particles Plus Inc.)

The 5302-AQM Air Quality Monitor manufactured by Particles Plus offers patented multi-processor based particle counting, temperature, humidity, Total Volatile Organic Compounds (TVOC), and Carbon Dioxide (CO2) monitoring. The instrument is designed for fixed installation and is suitable for monitoring controlled environments. The instrument can also be used to monitor return and supply ducts for particle levels and TVOC levels for carbon filter performance.  This allows for filtration systems to utilize energy efficient motor control functions reducing energy costs by lowering the system’s flow rate on demand. The instrument’s non-dispersive infrared, and its photo-ionization detector, offer high accuracy. Multi-processing allows the instrument to count more particles in less time, which increases concentration exposure levels and improves count accuracy. The system offers multiple means of real-time communication, including Ethernet, optional Wi-Fi, and USB for both client and host connections.  The unit can be controlled or monitored remotely using provided software, over a network browser, or through a facility monitoring system using MODBUS protocols. The onboard memory can store 45,000 sample records including on-screen annotations that can be downloaded to a USB memory stick while sampling. The instrument provides for mass concentration data and each channel size can be adjusted to the user’s needs, covering a range from 0.3 to 25 µm displaying these values on a 4.3-in. color touchscreen.

Water/Chemical/Gases and Related Equipment

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TBS-1080 Chlorine Dioxide Gas Generation System (TBS Technologies LLC)

TBS-1080 Chlorine Dioxide Gas Generation System (TBS Technologies LLC)

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TBS-1080 Chlorine Dioxide Gas Generation System (TBS Technologies LLC)

Standards for surface cleaning of Biosafety Cabinets (BSCs) have long been established and integrated into infection control programs (ICP). Manual disinfection is subject to human error and may be less effective. TBS Technologies LLC offers its BSC Disinfection System which insures 100 percent contact with all exposed surfaces and provides confidence of thorough disinfection. The patented system is a safe, simple and user-friendly way to disinfect BSCs. The unit is the first Chlorine Dioxide (CD) gas generator designed in compliance with NSF/ANSI Standard 49 protocol (G.7.3.2.1 Method 1) for the fixed mass of CD gas that fits inside a BSC or any small enclosed space such as isolators, pass-throughs, and incubators found in research labs and cleanrooms. The portable (12 lbs.) TBS-1080, which uses prepackaged reagent solutions, is efficient, low-cost and does not use or produce chlorine (Cl2) gas. The system is easy to use with automated activation, a large LCD screen indicating the progress of disinfection, and automated quenching and neutralization of the reaction mixture for safe drain disposal after completion. The unit is suitable for both certifiers and end users.

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