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“Clean room” or laminar box? What is more suitable for organizing the repair of hard drives?

When a hard drive receives physical damage, the process of data recovery and disk repair requires a high degree of care and experience. The recovery process includes removing the disk from the computer and then removing it.

A casual environment, such as a kitchen table or a workbench in the basement, will do more harm than help. Contaminants cause damage to the sensitive surfaces of the hard drive’s recording plates. In addition, the service engineer must not allow any contaminants to enter the atmosphere or workspace.

When you are looking for a hard drive recovery company, always make sure that they have a so-called “clean room” in which they are repairing hard drives. Clean room – a standard for organizations involved in the repair and maintenance of railway, as well as for laboratories and other organizations for which a high degree of cleanliness is mandatory.

A sterile room is a very accurate replica of the laboratory environment in which temperature and humidity are monitored to ensure that sensitive process elements and samples are protected from contaminants that are constantly in the air. In the cleanest rooms, the walls and ceilings are made of plastic or polymer. These rooms are ventilated all the time with filtered abacterial airflow and have external light sources.

In a sterile room it is very important to maintain high sanitary conditions every day. Modern hard drive parts are very sensitive to contamination, and this sensitivity is growing every year, because technologies are developing ever smaller and more fragile parts, so “pollutants” getting on the inside of a hard drive can physically destroy it.

A room can be called “clean” if it complies with the federal standard of the United States of America 209D, respectively, this room is assigned a class of 100 (100 Class Clear Room). According to the technical characteristics in the premises of Class 100, the amount of polluting particles does not exceed 100 atoms per 0.5 microns per cubic foot of air. But such a concentration of abacterial air is present only in highly specialized laboratories, for example, in a medical institution for organ transplantation. Even in the hard drive factory itself, such sterility cannot be present. Therefore, the sixth category of cleanliness of the room according to ISO 14644-1 is suitable for HDD repair.

To comply with the conditions of ISO 14644-1, it is not necessary to build a whole sterile room, it is enough to install a laminar box and work in it. The laminar box is a small chamber in which a clean environment is created due to the laminar flow of air passing through special HEPA filters, which guarantee the retention of 99.97% of dust particles up to 0.3 microns in size. Constantly circulating inside the working chamber, the purified air thereby fills the entire space and displaces contaminated particles. Inside, a lighting source is necessarily installed, which creates the absolute visibility of the device being repaired. Laminar boxes are made in two versions: with horizontal or vertical air flow. Accordingly, in these two different models, the air flow moves vertically or horizontally. The horizontal airflow option is most practical, as it excludes the possibility of blowing contaminated particles directly from the hands of a specialist into small parts, since the flow is directed towards the worker.

Inside any hard drive there is a mechanical part – a hermetic block, in which, contrary to popular belief, there is still air necessary for the head to work, which somehow “hovers” above the surface of the “pancakes”. Only this air, unlike ambient air, does not contain particles of dust and moisture. That is why the disassembly of the hard drive must be done in a specialized laminar box.

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