When it comes to air sampling equipment, the slit-to-agar design is something of an industry standard. Regulatory guidance limits for air viables were actually based on recovery of microbial contaminants with slit-to-agar air samplers. It has existed for years and in that time has performed admirably, delivering incredibly accurate results in a wide variety of circumstances. At EMTEK Air, we believe that embracing existing technology is critical in moving the industry forward. That’s why EMTEK’s Patented R2S microbial air sampler incorporates the industry standard slit-to-agar sampling methodology you’ve come to expect, along with a few notable improvements.
The R2S air sampler provides optimal organismal recovery, as reflected in ISO 14698-1 driven validation testing performed. It simplifies the enumeration of recovered organisms and allows you to easily calculate the number of organisms per volume of air. Additionally, it offers up to 120 minutes of continuous, active monitoring per sample cycle. In short, the R2S is designed to provide you with the maximum amount of accuracy possible while simplifying some of the more complex and tedious elements of the air sampling process.
We’ve designed the R2S air sampler in a way that enhances its ability to collect samples. It’s only 5.5 inches tall and 5 inches in diameter, which means you can deploy it in almost any environment and it has a small cross-sectional area that minimizes laminar airflow disruption. The unit itself generates virtually no particulate matter, as well as samples and recovers bacteria at the point of operations. We’ve also built the device to ensure you can quickly and completely sanitize all exposed surfaces as needed – cross-contamination risks are minimal due to this design.
Additionally, the R2S as operated with our V100 Controller can operate up to 90 feet away from the controller and will filter and exhaust the sampled air volume at the controller unit outside of the critical environment. It is an ideal solution for Class 100, ISO 5, or Class A/B LAF hoods, isolators, fill lines, and BSC, as well as bulk production and support areas.
Our role at EMTEK Air is building the best and most cutting-edge air samplers on the market, and the R2S delivers flexibility, accuracy, and efficiency you can’t find anywhere else.
There are two primary types of microbial air sampling: Active air sampling, and passive air sampling. In passive air sampling, a nutrient media test plate is placed in a desired location and allowed to collect particulates (both viable and non viable) for a desired amount of time. Active air sampling, on the other hand, requires air to be drawn into the device through a vacuum source and the particles within the sampled air volume are then captured on, or within the nutrient test media employed.
If you’re considering an active air sampling solution for your work environment, there are some things you need to take into account before deciding on a specific model:
Because an active microbial air sampler requires equipment to generate air vacuum and gather samples, they’re much larger than a simple sample test plate. Still, active air monitoring equipment comes in a variety of sizes, giving you the ability to find a solution that fits both your budget and your physical workspace. Ideally, your air sampling equipment won’t be cumbersome, take up space, or impact your environment or operations in a negative way.
Active air sampling equipment presents a variety of advantages, which includes the allowance to monitor smaller microbial particulates, less than 1 micron in size. Active air sampling can meet the requirements for capture of 1m3 of air in critical zones and the density of microorganisms per volume of air can be determined. You’ll need to regularly sterilize and sanitize the equipment to ensure the sampling process isn’t corrupted by previous collections.
A sample plate used for passive air sampling is generally less expensive than an active air sampler. Combined with the maintenance costs, an active sampler can represent quite an investment. Regardless, active air sampling can be a beneficial asset and is the best method of testing in certain environments and circumstances. At EMTEK, we provide our clients with several varieties of samplers available for varying types of labs as well as budgets.
The right air sampling solution is the one that gives you the results you need without negatively impacting your environment and workspace. For more information about which air sampler may work best for your facilities and process please visit www.emtekair.com or contact us at 877.850.4244.
When working in a sensitive environment, it is critical to use the right equipment. Your first priority should always be preserving the quality of the environment surrounding your workspace, as environmental stability can make or break any number of critical mission functions. For this reason, it is worth taking a little time to understand which air sampling devices will deliver minimal environmental interference in your workflows.
In addition to comparing and contrasting each microbial air sampler’s features list, you may want to pay special attention to specific undesirable traits that can negatively impact your workspace. Unfiltered exhaust, for example, can compromise the air surrounding the sampler. Various issues to watch out for include: Generation of particles (shedding of materials by a device), Laminar airflow disruption (due to unit size, or shape), harboring or shedding microbial contaminants (due to the inability to completely sanitize a device), oversized devices that are difficult to place, or sample volumes being exhausted at the test location. Any one of these issues can create serious problems.
There are a few ideal traits to identify when it comes to air sampling devices. Remote operation, for example, enables greater control over a microbial air sampler without actually needing to interact with it physically to start, stop, or pause a sample run. Other strong features include: HEPA filtered exhaust, simple and easy cleaning and sterilization, small size and convenient design, no airflow disruption, exhaust of sampled air volume outside of critical zones, and low to no particle generation. When you compare these features, you’ll notice that there are certain factors of air sampling equipment that go above and beyond the sampling rate of devices.
In summary, selecting the appropriate air sampling device is an important step in preserving the quality of your work environment. Think carefully about your workflows and their needs, and consider all features of a microbial air sampler to ensure you receive a product that delivers what you require without compromising your environment. For more information please visit www.emtekair.com or contact us with any questions at 877.850.4244 .