Monthly Archives: March 2016

  1. What is the Best Sterilization Method for Your Lab?

    What is the Best Sterilization Method for Your Lab?

    Sterilization is a process designed to destroy and remove all forms of life present in a certain region. It’s accomplished by use of physical or chemical means. Autoclaves, for example, steam sterilize by high pressure and heat (250°F/121°C at the low end).

    Another sterilization-by-heating technique uses infrared to kill microorganisms in a few seconds using temperatures up to 1500°F/815°C. On the chemical front, hydrogen peroxide can break down cellular tissue.

    BactiZapper™ Infrared sterilizer by Benchmark Scientific

    BactiZapper™ Infrared sterilizer from Benchmark Scientific

    Sterilization can also be used to el

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  2. Moisture-Free Storage: Nitrogen or Desiccant?

    Moisture-Free Storage: Nitrogen or Desiccant?

    Desiccators, sometimes called dry boxes, provide a low-humidity atmosphere for storage of items and materials that would otherwise be damaged by moisture. Desiccators are used for a wide range of applications across several scientific disciplines.

    In chemistry and biology, desiccators are often used to store hygroscopic reagents and chemicals. Keeping these compounds in a low-humidity environment drastically increases their shelf life. In semiconductor research and manufacturing, dry storage is often employed to prevent damaging oxidation of wafers and other components that can lead to immediate or latent failures.

    In order to achieve a low relative-humidity (RH) atmosphere for storage within a desiccator, two storage techniques are commonly used: desiccant-based and nitrogen-purged.

    Benefits of Desiccant

    A desiccant is a hygroscopic material, often silica gel. We’ve all seen “pillow packs” in pill bottles and electronic pac

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