A cleanroom suit, clean room suit, or bunny suit, is an overall garment worn in a cleanroom, an environment with a controlled level of contamination. One common type is an all-in-one coverall worn by semiconductor and nanotechnology line production workers, technicians, and process / equipment engineers. Similar garments are worn by people in similar roles creating sterile products for the medical device and biopharmaceutical industries.
The suit covers the wearer to prevent skin and hair being shed into a clean room environment. The suit may be in one piece or consist of several separate garments worn tightly together. The suit incorporates both boots and hood designed to be breathable, lightweight while protecting wearer. Polypropylene with a polyethylene coating, or Tyvek polyethylene are standard. The materials found in cleanroom suits can also be found on personal protective equipment.
Suits are usually deposited in a storage bin after being contaminated for dry cleaning, autoclaving and/or repair.
Because it takes a significant amount of time (at least 15 minutes) to put on and take off such suits properly, one indicator that a clean room may be understaffed is whether suits deposited for cleaning consistently show evidence of frequent accidents (i.e., when a technician was too overwhelmed with urgent tasks to escape from the suit and reach a toilet in time).
The term "bunny suit" is also used for hazmat suits, worn by workers handling high-risk hazardous biological or chemical substances, as well as in the containment areas of nuclear power plants. These suits consist of the main garment, hood, thin cotton gloves, rubber gloves, plastic bags over normal work shoes, and rubber booties. The wrists and ankles are taped down with masking tape. Occasionally a plastic raincoat is also worn. Removal of the garments (into several barrels) is a complicated process which must be performed in an exact sequence. Often a health physicist is present in the work area to observe good anti-contamination practices.
- NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Dynamic Design: The Cleanroom (PDF), retrieved 2011-05-25
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- Eban, Katherine (2 December 2020). "The COVID Vaccines Are Approaching. Is the FDA Ready to Inspect the Plants Where They're Made?". Vanity Fair. Condé Nast. Retrieved 26 March 2021.
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- Pictorial demonstration of gowning
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