While the degree of protection varies with each class, in general a laminar flow biological safety cabinet is designed to provide these three basic types of protection:
Classification is an important consideration in the selection of any biological safety cabinet. Over the years, the scientific community has adopted commonly accepted classification criteria to differentiate containment capabilities and performance attributes. Biological safety cabinets are divided into three classifications. Baker designs and manufactures all of these types of biosafety containment cabinets.
NSF International (The National Sanitation Foundation) conducts tests on biological safety cabinets to ensure the products meet minimum standards for cabinet classifications devised by NSF.
|Biosafety Cabinet Classification||Biosafety Level||Application|
|Class 1 Biosafety Cabinet||1,2,3||Low to moderate risk biological agents|
|Class 2 Biosafety Cabinet||1,2,3||Low to moderate risk biological agents|
|Class 3 Biosafety Cabinet||4||High risk biological agents|
The Class I biological safety cabinet is designed to provide personnel and environmental protection only.
A Class II cabinet must meet requirements for the protection of product, personnel and the environment. This type of cabinet is widely used in clinical, hospital, life science, research and pharmaceutical laboratories.
In general, cabinets are classified according to the method by which air volumes are recirculated or exhausted.
The Class II biological safety cabinet has three key features:
Vertical, unidirectional airflow and a front access opening are common to most Class II cabinets. But, because Class II designs permit different airflow patterns, velocities, HEPA air filter position, ventilation rates and exhaust methods, a sub-classification of Type is needed to differentiate Class II BSC designs. For more information on the types of Class II biosafety cabinets, download our Guide to Class II Biosafety Cabinets.
Class III biological safety cabinets are gas-tight, designed for use with high risk biological agents. Class III cabinets provide the highest level of personnel, product and environmental protection. Because of the sensitive nature of most procedures performed within a Class III cabinet, Baker builds each BSC system to exact customer specifications.
Typical applications include:
Review the protection levels and key features of Class II Biosafety Cabinets in this free guide that includes an easy-to-read chart explaining how the types of Class II cabinets differ and graphics illustrating the supply, exhaust and recirculation airflow patterns that classify Type A1, A2, B1 and B2 cabinets.