1. Browse Terra Universal's overview chart to pinpoint the ideal product for your application.
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  3. Incubators by Thermo Fisher, Sheldon, Binder and Benchmark Scientific. Select from CO2, refrigerated, B.O.D., drosophila and microbiological modelsIncubators Features Overview
    Incubators

    Air Convection MethodVoltageVoltageTemperature RangeSpecial Application FeaturesCapacityConstruction MaterialShel Lab B.O.D.Thermo Fisher Refrigerated BODThermo Fisher HeracellBenchmark ST-45 & ST-180Shel Lab SCO6ADBINDER CB/CB-SBenchmark myTemp CO2Benchmark SureTherm CO2Thermo Fisher Reach In CO2Thermo Fisher Midi 40Benchmark SureTempBenchmark myTempShel Lab Fruit FlyThermo Fisher HerathermBINDER BD AvantgardeThermo Fisher PrecisionThermo Fisher Heratherm SecurityThermo Fisher Heratherm

    A – Lab Incubator Capacity
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    Laboratory incubators are manufactured in a broad array of sizes, ranging from compact benchtop units smaller than 1 cubic foot to high-capacity, reach-in chambers larger than 40 cubic feet.

    Compact incubators (small-footprint, counter-top models under 6 cubic feet) are designed to house samples from a single cell culture line. For labs with limited workspace, certain benchtop incubators are compatible with stacking kits that accommodate up to 3 units.

    Floor-standing incubators (up to 20 cubic feet) are designed to isolate cultures from multiple cell lines, protecting the samples from cross-contamination.

    High volume reach-in models (larger than 20 cubic feet) include space for additional sample agitation equipment, such as incubator-safe shakers, for cell aeration and solubility studies.

    Compare Incubator Sizes and Prices

    B – Incubator Temperature Control Systems
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    Lab incubators and environmental test chambers are designed to maintain environmental conditions ideal for growing and storing bacterial and mammalian cell cultures.

    Why Use a CO2 Incubator for Cell Culture?

    CO2 incubators, used primarily to promote human cell growth, maintain a temperature of 37 degrees Celsius and a humidity level of 95% RH. Microbiological incubators are designed to sustain temperatures between 5 degrees and 70 degrees Celsius to accommodate a variety of bacterial, viral and fungal species.

    Refrigerated incubators maintain temperatures up to 40 degrees cooler than ambient conditions for fermentation studies and plant cell cultures.

    C – Incubator Construction Material
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    C1 – Aluminum Incubators

    Drosophila incubators feature day/night cycling to promote fruit fly germination and include aluminum-clad interior panels for better light refraction throughout the chamber.

    C2 – Epoxy-Coated Steel Incubators

    Epoxy-coated steel resists the most common biocides and alcohol-based disinfectants, but may be prone to corrosion in high humidity environments.

    C3 – Powder-Coated Steel Incubators

    Powder-coated steel represents an economical alternative to stainless steel, resisting most sanitizers and disinfectants. However, the powder coating may crack after prolonged exposure to bleach-based cleaners.

    C4 – Stainless Steel Incubators

    Stainless steel incubators maintain aseptic conditions within the incubator, resist all sanitizers and disinfectants, and will not corrode in high humidity environments.

    D – Environmental Incubator Air Convection Method
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    D1 – Air Jacket Incubators

    Jacketed CO2 Incubators employ two primary methods of temperature control: water-jacketed and air-jacketed internal plenums. Water-jacketed incubators offer better temperature uniformity but must be drained and cleaned weekly. Air-jacketed models are lighter, easier to transport, and maintenance-free.

    D2 – Dual Convection Incubators

    Dual convection incubators toggle between mechanical and gravity convection modes. Gravity convection models introduce heat, through a heating element, at the bottom of the internal chamber and allow gravity to cause the warmed air to rise throughout the storage area. Mechanical convection systems utilize an internal fan to distribute heated air across the internal chamber.

    D3 – Forced Air Incubators

    Similar to mechanical convection systems, forced air incubator utilize an internal or external blower to distribute heated air throughout the internal chamber. Forced air and mechanical convection incubators boast reduced recovery times after the chamber is accessed, making these designs ideal for high-throughput cell culture labs.

    D4 – Gravity Incubators

    Gravity convection incubators introduce heat into the bottom of the internal chamber and allow gravity to distribute the warmed air across the storage area as it rises. Gravity convection systems maintain lower air change rates than mechanical or forced-air units – ideal for labs storing non-aqueous samples prone to over-drying.

    D5 – Mechanical Incubators

    Mechanical convection incubators yield industry-leading temperature uniformity by utilizing a fan to distribute heated air across the internal chamber. Given their higher air change rate, mechanical convection incubators quickly warm samples transferred from cold storage without evaporating the growth media.

    E – Voltages
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    E1 – 120 Incubators

    120-volt connections are suitable for standard residential power outlets in the US.

    E2 – 240 Incubators

    240-volt connections require less current (amperage) and smaller conductors than appliances designed to operate at 120V.

    F – Special Application Features - Incubator Function in Microbiology
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    F1 – B.O.D. Incubator Applications

    Biological Oxygen Demand (B.O.D.) applications determine the amount of pollution within a water sample by quantifying the oxygen consumed by microorganisms as they decompose organic matter. BOD incubators utilize Peltier coolers to maintain precise temperature uniformity for wastewater treatment, germination studies and plant cultivation.

    View BOD Incubator Specifications

    F2 – Drosophila Culture Incubators

    Drosophila incubators maintain optimal conditions for fruit fly culturing by incorporating day-night light cycling (through an internal LED light), Peltier thermo-cooling (for over-temperature protection), and mechanical convection (for rapid temperature changes).

    F3 – High Security Incubators

    High security incubators utilize restricted access controls, such as fingerprint scanners and keycard readers, to protect high-value samples for clinical diagnostics, recombinant protein production, or gene expression.

    F4 – Small Footprint Incubators

    Compact models with optional stacking kits are ideal for crowded research labs or educational institutions with limited benchtop space.

    F5 – Incubators with Timed On/Off Cycles

    For samples with incubation protocols beyond the standard 48-hour culture cycle, advanced protocol models include digital controllers with timed on/off cycles for real-time sample monitoring.

    F6 – Incubator with UV Lighting

    The two primary methods for incubator chamber disinfection are UV sanitization and high-heat decontamination. Germicidal UV light, emitted at 254 nanometers, denatures microbial genetic material. Incubators with UV lighting are equipped with digital controllers and load presence sensors to prevent samples from UV exposure. High-heat decontamination cycles utilize hot, moist air to sterilize the inner chamber when the incubator is free of samples.

    F7 – Stackable Incubators

    Certain benchtop incubators are compatible with optional stacking kits capable of housing up to three small-footprint units. Stackable units are ideal for crowded labs culturing distinct cell lines that cannot be stored within a single incubator.

    F8 – Remote Cell Culture Monitoring Incubators

    Incubators with remote cell culture monitoring systems allow real-time, visual sample observation through a mobile app or LIMS integration.

    G – Cell Culture Incubator Humidity and Co2 Controls
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    G1 – CO2 Gas Incubators

    CO2 carbon dioxide incubators use infrared or thermocouple sensors to maintain optimal conditions for cell and tissue culture growth. Optional CO2 alarms alert operators when their gas tank requires replacement.

    G2 – Cell Culture Incubators - Humidity Control Co2 Incubators

    Eukaryotic cells grow optimally at a humidity level of 95% RH. Incubators designed for clinical diagnostics utilize infrared sensors to maintain precise humidity levels to promote human cell growth.

    G3 – O2 Gas Incubators

    For anaerobic cell culturing or hypoxia studies, certain incubators include O2 gas control to reduce oxygen levels within the incubator down to 0.1%.

    Shop CO2 Incubators by Brand

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  4. Environmental Test Chambers, Growth Chambers, and Stability Chambers by Thermo Fisher Scientific and BinderTest Chamber Features Overview
    Large capacity incubator

    Special FeaturesInterior Chamber MaterialApplicationCapacityVoltageMaximum TemperatureBinder KBWF Humidity Test ChamberBinder MK Climate ChamberBinder KBW Growth ChamberrBinder KBF LQC Humidity Test ChamberBinder KBF P Humidity Test ChamberBinder MKF Climate ChamberThermo Fisher Precision Plant Growth ChamberThermo Fisher Forma 3960 Test ChamberBinder KMF Humidity Test ChamberThermo Fisher Forma Environmental ChamberBinder KBF Humidity Test Chamber

    What is an Environmental Test Chamber Used For?

    Environmental test chambers are designed to maintain user-specified atmospheric conditions, through temperature, humidity, airflow, and light cycling controls, for stability and shelf-life testing of pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, raw materials or food products.

    Test Chamber Guidelines and Standards

    The guidelines for product stability testing are published by the International Council for Harmonization of Technical Requirements for Pharmaceuticals for Human Use, or ICH. The ICH’s guidelines define acceptable temperature and humidity ranges, deviations from setpoints, length of testing intervals, and uniformity across the internal chamber.

    Stability Test Chamber Construction Material

    Depending upon the intended use of the product, stability testing durations may range from several days to one year. As such, environmental test chambers are built with durable painted-steel exteriors and aseptic, rigid stainless steel interiors to handle the rigors of long-term testing.

    Testing Chamber Airflow

    To ensure optimal uniformity across the testing area, environmental testing chambers are designed with horizontal laminar airflow systems that include a positive-pressure feed plenum on one side of the chamber and a negative-pressure return plenum on the opposite side.

    Read More: Environmental Test Chambers 101

    A - Environmental Test Chamber Application
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    Environmental test chambers are designed for four primary applications: humidity chambers, climate test chambers, photostability chambers, and growth chambers. Humidity chambers are designed to control temperatures from ambient to, most commonly, 70°C and humidity levels from 10% to 98% RH.

    Humidity test chambers include cooling coils to reduce the internal temperature down to refrigerated levels (4°C). Climate test chambers offer a broader temperature range than humidity test chambers, normally -40°C to 180°C, to simulate extreme environmental conditions.

    Photostability chambers include UV and fluorescent lights to expose pharmaceutical or cosmetic samples to differing lumen dosages.

    Plant Growth chambers control temperature and humidity to simulate optimal growth conditions for plant organisms, like Arabidopsis, or seed germination studies.

    General Protocol

    Growth

    Humidity

    Refrigerated

    B - Maximum Test Chamber Temperature
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    Standard environmental test chambers maintain temperatures from ambient to 70°C, though certain models utilize cooling coils to reduce temperatures down to 4°C.

    Growth chambers are designed to simulate optimal germination conditions for seeds and plant organisms and, thus, cannot maintain temperatures above 50°C.

    Climate testing chambers offer the broadest temperature range in the industry, commonly -40°C to 180°C.

    Climate Control Chambers

    Environmental Testing Chambers

    Plant Growth Chambers

    C - Environmental Test Chamber Size and Capacity
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    Environmental test chambers are manufactured to a standard range of sizes based on sample storage capacity.

    Compact, low-throughput models provide 2 cubic feet or 4 cubic feet of storage space, whereas high-throughput, free-standing units provide up to 29 cubic feet of storage space.

    Standard test chambers include adjustable shelves installed on steel racks to maximize sample storage capacity within the internal chamber.

    Given the side-mounted plenums external to the inside chamber space, the working footprint of the test chamber is significantly larger than the storage capacity.

    12 to 24 cubic feet

    <12 cubic feet

    >24 cubic feet

    D - Environmental Test Chamber Voltage
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    120-volt connections are suitable for standard laboratory power outlets in the United States.

    240-volt connections, common in Mainland Europe, require less current (amperage) and smaller conductors than equipment designed to operate at 120-volt.

    Specialty high-voltage equipment requires 480-volt connections and carries additional protection against electrical hazards.

    E - Environmental Chamber Interior Material
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    Stainless steel is compatible with alcohol-based cleaners, resists corrosion, and promotes aseptic conditions. Powder-coated steel represents an economical alternative to stainless steel but may chip after prolonged exposure to bleach-based disinfectants.

    F - Special Environmental Test Chamber Features
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    F1 - Refrigerated Environmental Test Chambers ion

    Refrigerated test chambers maintain temperatures down to 4°C for shelf-life testing or stability testing of pharmaceuticals. Refrigerated models can also serve as short-term storage spaces for temperature-sensitive food products and raw materials.

    F2 - Humidity Control Test Chambers

    Humidity test chambers maintain RH levels from 10% to 98% per ICH guidelines. Visual and audible alarms activate if temperature or humidity conditions fall outside of the standard range.

    F3 - Diurnal Light Cycling Chambers for Plants

    Plant growth chambers contain fluorescent lighting for programmed daily light and dark (or day/night) cycles defined over a one-week period.

    F4 - Touchscreen Environmental Controller

    Ergonomic touchscreen controllers include time segmenting, real-time programming, data logging and export, system diagnostic testing, and audible/visual alarms.

    F5 - Light Dose Control for Testing Chambers

    Certain photostability chambers include light dosage control for UV-A and fluorescent, visible light per ICH guidelines.

    Where Can I Buy Environmental Test Chambers Online?

    Laboratory-Equipment.com is a specialty division of Terra Universal. For nearly 40 years, Terra Universal has served semiconductor, aerospace, life science, pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and medical device markets. Customers appreciate a worldwide network of reps, factory-direct support, and ready-to-ship items available from Terra's manufacturing and warehouse facilities in Fullerton, California.

    Shop Test Chambers Online to compare pricing, features, and selection for a wide variety of lab equipment including test chambers, dispersers, shakers, stirrers, and cold storage. Browse lab equipment for applications including general laboratory, plant growth, genetic research, novel strain development, PCR, DNA/RNA techniques, ELISA, protein analysis, and cell culture.

    Shop Environmental Testing Chamber Manufacturers

    Shop Test Chambers By Product Family

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  5. Shelves, stands, rolling bases and stacking kits for Thermo Fisher, Sheldon and Benchmark incubators

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Incubator and Test Chamber Features

Shel Lab Drosophila Undercounter Peltier Incubator

Peltier cooled models provide gentle, uniform heating throughout the incubator and specific refrigerated models with conformal coated refrigeration coils are ideal in BOD (biochemical oxygen demand) applications.

BOD Thermoelectric Peltier Cooled Incubator

Designed for use in sewage and wastewater testing, B.O.D. Thermoelectric Cooled Incubators are energy saving models that meet APHA requirements.

Thermo Fisher Scientific Precision High-Performance Incubators

Precision High-Performance Incubators are designed for maximum usability and sample protection. Ideal for labs culturing bacteria on a large scale, units provide a high degree of temperature uniformity, stability and accuracy.

Thermo Fisher Scientific Midi 40 Small Capacity CO2 Incubator

Designed specifically for cell culture scientists performing personal use applications, the compact Midi 40 CO2 Incubator is ideal for small workloads. The Midi 40 is also powerful enough to deliver what bigger incubators do cost effectively.

BINDER KBWF 720 Growth Chamber with Light and Humidification

24.7 cu. ft. capacity KBWF 720 Plant Growth Chamber with light and humidification includes illumination cassettes and stainless steel racks.

Heratherm Large Capacity General Protocol Microbiological Incubator

Gravity convection 750L General Protocol Microbiological Incubator by Thermo Fisher Scientific with a temperature range from Ambient +5 °C to+75 °C.

BINDER Worldwide KBF 240 Humidity Test Chamber

KBF 240 Humidity Test Chamber with a 8.72 cu. ft. capacity provides uniform temperature and humidity conditions; 2 stainless steel shelves and 4 casters.

MK 56 Dynamic Climate Chambers by BINDER Worldwide, 2.1. cu. ft.

2.1 cu. ft. model features a stainless steel interior and a heated viewing window with LED interior lighting includes 1 stainless steel rack and 4 casters

Incubator Stability Chamber Models

  • BD Series Avantgarde.Line Standard Incubators by BINDER BD Series Avantgarde.Line Standard Incubators by BINDER
  • Thermo Fisher Scientific Precision High-Performance Incubators Thermo Fisher Scientific Precision High-Performance Incubators
  • ST-180 Plus CO2 Incubator by Benchmark Scientific with a 180 liter capacity features dual beam IR sensor ST-180 Plus CO2 Incubator by Benchmark Scientific
  • Heratherm Microbiological Incubators by Thermo Fisher Scientific shown in general, advanced and advanced security models Heratherm Microbiological Incubators by Thermo Fisher Scientific
  • Heratherm Large Capacity General Protocol Microbiological Incubators Large Capacity Microbiological Incubators
  • Precision Plant Growth Chamber by Thermo Fisher Scientific for plant growth and seed germination applications include four shelves Plant Growth Chambers by Thermo Fisher Scientific
  • BINDER Worldwide KBF 115 Humidity Test Chamber; 3.6 cu. ft. capacity shown BINDER Humidity Test and Growth Chambers
  • Benchmark Scientific SureTemp Precision Incubators in three capacity sizes Benchmark Scientific SureTemp Precision Digital Incubators
  • ST-45 Plus CO2 Incubator by Benchmark Scientific ST-45 Plus CO2 Incubator by Benchmark Scientific

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