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What is a particle counter? How does particle counter work? What are they used for?

Update: 2019-11-08 17:47 Source: LUFTMY Reading: ↻ News

Particle counter can monitor dust-free particles for dust-free chamber manufacturing, sensitive production and HVAC system.

Airborne particle counter plays an important role in monitoring, classifying and diagnosing pollutant sources and skin color in clean room operation.Manufacturers of semiconductors, flat panel displays and hard disk storage units have long recognized the relationship between improved air quality and increased final production.In particular, the control of particles in the air is essential for ISO certification of clean rooms, areas and spaces.As the workspace changes with production requirements, the use of local monitoring equipment is essential to measure and maintain the required cleanliness.

Electronic manufacturing requires strict procedures and environmental controls, especially where the process requires toxic, flammable, corrosive or reactive materials.At the same time, processes and people introduce and produce particles throughout the production process.When components interact with dust, airborne microorganisms, aerosol particles, and trace amounts of water, production drops dramatically.The particle counter ensures that the mechanical and design functions of the clean room (such as air filters and through-holes) operate efficiently during production and at rest.

What is the difference between condensed particle counter and optical particle counter?

What is a condensed particle counter? (CPC)

The condensed particle counter (CPC), sometimes referred to as the condensed core counter (CNC), is used to measure the concentration of ultrafine particles that cannot be detected by the photometer or OPC.The filter insert can hold high-purity liquid, usually isopropanol or butanol of reagent grade, which can be used for incoming air samples.When particles interact with liquids, nanoparticles expand to about 10-12 microns, making them easier to detect.CPC particle counter can achieve ideal saturation value, usually 100-200%, by strictly adjusting its saturation level with the change of temperature.The more uniform the saturation is, the more accurate the CPC can detect the variance pulses of light scattered by particles. Uneven and / or non-circular particles can lead to misleading test results, highlighting the superiority of CPC over standard optical particle counters.The standard optical particle counter lacks the sensitivity to record particles at a threshold of about 50 nm.The condensed particle counter will count all particles less than 1 nm according to the model.CPC, on the other hand, cannot provide data about particle size and can only count it.

Purpose and common application of condensed particle counter:

1.Respirator suitability test

2.Filter test

3.Study on indoor air quality

4.Mechanical filtration system evaluation

5.Point source monitoring

6.Verify engineering or process control

Airborne particle counter of light scattering

Light scattering particle counter is one of the most common designs for air quality monitoring and classification in clean rooms.Also known as optical particle counter, it is used to measure particle number concentration and size range to verify mechanical filtration system and identify pollution source.When particles pass through a beam, light scatters.The optical particle counter does not directly indicate the particle size.Instead, they measure the diameter of light scattered and suspended in the air.Particle size is measured after the photon detector converts the size and frequency of scattered light into electrical signal.Useful measurements and data require high-quality optical design and high-power lasers with precise angles.

What's the use of particle counters?

1.Test air filter for leaks

2.Spot check the real-time cleanliness during operation


4.Test filter leakage and efficiency

5.Create standardized test routines for long-term monitoring and data logging

Environmental monitoring and process monitoring

For electronic product manufacturers, regulations do not need to carry out process and environmental monitoring, but as a way to reduce the output and quality control risks of pollutants. Process monitoring determines the readiness of the room to perform tasks.

Pharmaceutical companies are facing more stringent environmental and process monitoring guidelines. In general, hand-held particle counting equipment cannot be used to test ISO level 5 specifications required for many pharmaceutical cleanroom facilities. Dedicated devices for centralized particle counters (called "remote" air particle counters) are connected to walls, devices or fixtures for long-term dedicated monitoring.

What size particles should be monitored in electronic manufacturing?

For each environment, the requirements for particle detection vary with the application. In general, granularity is monitored by different electronic manufacturers:

1.Semiconductor manufacturing: below 0.1um

2.Hard disk manufacturer: 0.2 um to 0.3 um

3.Flat panel display manufacturing: 0.3um and 1.0um

Compared with the plant wide monitoring system of 24-hour data collection, the facilities for spot checking the dust-free room of daily active assessment need different tools. In general, hand-held particle counters provide sampling inspection in small local areas. For large-scale dedicated monitoring, or clean room certification testing, desktop and dedicated remote systems provide ideal functionality.

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