Would anyone agree on the usefulness of a fume hood? Perhaps it’s not a common requirement for bio-work?
I could see it being useful, but it’s challenging to organise in terms of a) cost, and b) space. If we could fund and find a place to put it, sure, it would be a nice-to-have - but I just don’t see where it fits.
We do of course already have a class II microbiological cabinet in the second room to be repurposed/serviced (hopefully for tissue culture work!), but that is not specifically designed for handling volatile/toxic/odorous chemicals as far as I’m aware (another member - Roger for example might want to contradict me here…)
I don’t know exactly what type of class II it is off the top of my head, and therefore what it might be able to handle under hazardous chemicals if it was restored. (see: http://www.labconco.com/articles/whats-the-difference-between-a-fume-hood-and-a-b )
Finally (of course), we’re likely to not be handling as many potentially hazardous chemicals in our labs to ensure we are keeping the space and our members safe and adhering to relevant risks assessments and safety protocols, so the demand/cost-benefit may be limited.
At tonight’s committee meeting, we had a very brief discussion, I will summarise though this is not my domain.
A benchtop hood or glove box with HEPA filters could be possible. A chem lab style built one is very unlikely, we don’t have an external wall, the works could be expensive.
In general considerations for new equipment are size, how much use it would get (e.g. proposed projects that would use the equipment), and cost - so donated equipment or second hand equipment via Ebay or such would get consideration. (Projects that have funding for equipment can bypass some of this, but our total space currently is quite limited.)
For acquiring a fumehood specifically there would be questions about what chemicals you are handling, and what protocols you are following, as part of the lab usage project safety review.
Thank you all for this information.
We will be using nanoparticles and some not so nice solvents (e.g. toluene), so ideally would need an external wall and special nanomaterial waste disposal. I’ve had limited experience in a biolab before, and all chemicals / materials used there were quite safe.
From what I understand our requirements don’t match Biomakespace’s, which is absolutely fine! Thank you for your consideration and input!
Typically Jenny or Abigail (two of the directors) frequent the forum and could comment on the solvents, nanomaterial, etc … but they are both travelling at the moment.
I suspect this comes under - if we had more lab space and funds (sponsorship) it would be nice to have hoods to facilitate a wider range of activities.
This request is coming up again and with the sale of the large fridge in the middle lab we should think about whether a fume hood would fit in the space between the microbiological safety hood and the -80C freezer.
Here are some example ductless hoods that I found online (note that we do not have specific funding to buy one yet, so we would have to fundraise):
There are advantages to going ductless, not least not having to confirm the ducting route from the middle lab! However, there are some guides to ductless fume cabinets here, here and here. Notably, the NIH document states that NIH do not use ductless fume cabinets as they’re not suitable for all chemicals.
If we went this direction we would have to create a list of allowed chemicals for work in the hood.