Biosafety cabinet (BSC), also known as microbiological safety cabinet is a closed working cabinet, convection inside for handling pathogenic (or potentially pathogenic) microorganisms .
The primary use of a biosafety cabinet is to protect laboratory staff and its surroundings from pathogenic microorganisms. All exhaust gases will pass through a HEPA filter to help remove harmful bacteria and viruses.
In addition, the biological safety cabinet also maintains sterilization for the materials manipulated inside the cabinet.
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has classified biosafety cabinets into 3 levels. Levels and categories in each level will be differentiated based on two ways: the degree of protection of people and their surroundings, and the degree of protection of the sample.
Biological safety cabinets level 1
Class 1 biosafety cabinets are capable of protecting individuals and the surrounding environment, but not the sample, and the inflow of air can contaminate the sample. Its turbulent airflow is similar to a toxic hood, but has a HEPA filter in the exhaust system to protect the environment. This old style cabinet is rarely found in biomedical and microbiological laboratories, and the inflow is typically a flow of 75 ft / min. Class 1 biosafety cabinets are often used for centrifuges or experiments that may generate aerosols.
Biological safety cabinets 2
Class 2 biological safety cabinets protect the user, test materials and the environment because all air passes through the HEPA filter. There are 4 types: A1, A2, B1 and B2. Each type is designed based on international NSF standards. About 95% of the biosafety cabinets used are type A2.
Biological safety cabinets operate according to the principle of creating an air membrane around the sampling operated by an exhaust fan above the cabinet. This gas layer will then draw down below the working surface, then go up the cabinet through the HEPA filter. The air layer in the front of the cabinet is also withdrawn below the working surface. This air layer also acts as a barrier to prevent the infected air inside the operator's back.
Class 2 biosafety cabinets are the most common type in biomedical and microbiological laboratories. Air flow in the room around the user is sucked into the air holes in the front of the cabinet to protect the user. In addition, the laminar flow downward through the HEPA filter protects the test material inside the cabinet. The exhaust gas flow through the HEPA filter should no longer contain contaminants, protect the environment, and can be recirculated into the laboratory in a class 2 cabinet type A, or through the outside duct in a class 2 cabinet type B .
Biological safety cabinets 3
Class 3 biosafety cabinets are often used in laboratories with the highest levels of toxicity, with biohazardous agents (biotoxicity level 4) requiring the highest level of protection. The system is airtight, all materials entering or leaving must go through a 2-door autoclave. Biological safety cabinets 3 are completely sealed. The cabinet has a convection HEPA filter fitted with gloves, which decontaminates the sample in or out. This type of cabinet ensures a high level of personal and environmental protection from contaminated aerosols.
Biological safety cabinets
Although similar in appearance, the microbiological cabinet is not a biosafety cabinet. Room air passes through pre-filter and HEPA filter to remove contamination, dust and other particles. Pure air will enter the work surface through a turbulent direct air stream. This type of cabinet protects the sample but does not protect the user. Do not use microbiological incubators to handle any biohazardous agents or other hazardous materials.
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