SMC expands manufacturing capabilities with new cleanroom

SMC has expanded its manufacturing capabilities with the completion of a new cleanroom in Noblesville, Indiana.

The cleanroom footprint is approximately 25,000 sqft, or half a football field, and is designed with a modular aluminum honeycomb wall system which allows for layout versatility and future expansion or modifications to the cleanroom.

The modular construction also facilitates the progression of cleanliness as an operator will put on a cleanroom suit, covered from head to toe, in an ISO 7 room, and move through air locks to progressively arrive at the ISO 5 cleanroom work areas.

“After successful construction of our cleanroom, operating and maintaining the working conditions within it will be where SMC must apply extra care. An ISO 5 cleanroom must always meet minimum standards across the five fundamental parameters to be defined a proper facility for human comfort. These five are: temperature, humidity, airflow, filtration, and pressure.

For example, the recommended temperature for ISO 5 is 68°F (+/- 2°) for operator comfort when wearing a cleanroom suit and PPE. Relative humidity must be set at a level higher than 30% and lower than 50%; an RH below 30% will create static electrostatic discharge which can damage components or attract particulate matter, and above 50% will promote biological contaminates such as mold or bacteria growth,” said Chad Bosler, VP of Operations.

“Our ISO 5 cleanroom will be manufacturing and assembling high purity components essential to semiconductor chip manufacturing as well as food grade products for the food and beverage industries.

All our clean components are assembled and packaged in a work environment where HEPA filtration covers 70% of the ceiling areas with a downward airflow that circulates and changes the inside air 360 times per hour while maintaining an outward positive air pressure compare to the adjacent room,” said Senior Engineer, Garrett Flora.

SMC’s cleanroom construction is only one of many future capital investment projects on its corporate campus in its expansion pipeline. Over the next ten years, its plan is to increase current employment of 850 workers by 35% to about 1,157 employees and invest a total of $30.2 million in industrial facilities at its headquarters by 2032.