Category: Front News

Dycem Contamination Control News and Information

3rd October 2019

Follow this page for all of the latest information and news updates from Dycem Contamination Control.

With last year ending on a high, we were all eager to start the new year hitting the ground running and looking forward to introducing our specialist decontamination floor mats to a much wider audience than ever before.

Here are some of the highlights so far:



New Year – Same Effective Contamination Control



Dycem prides itself on the fact that its contamination control floor mats and inhibit up to 99.9% of floor level contamination and up to 75% of airborne particles entering clean and critical areas.

With the new year, comes to the same promise and continuing resolution that we can offer high performance, antimicrobial, antistatic and thoroughly effective and superior protection from contamination.

For a list of products Dycem has to offer, whether suitable for pedestrian traffic, wheel traffic or to support segmentation needs, please view our products page.

Tradeshows



We have provided the opportunity to experience how effective our contamination control floor mats can be by exhibiting them at various industry tradeshows across the whole of Europe and this year is no exception, below you can find where Dycem have exhibited this year so far.

Lounges Reinraum – Germany



Exhibiting at the Lounges Reinraum show in Karlsruhe for the third year in a row, Dycem showcased how contamination control floor mats are an ideal solution for the Cleanroom industry, helping to reduce the risk of microbial contaminants for clean and critical.

There are many rules a cleanroom must adhere to, meaning there is a great need to ensure these rules are followed.

Dycem’s added ingredient Biomaster, which is incorporated into Dycem mats during our manufacturing process give our product that extra, long-lasting effectiveness against microbial growth and protection whilst inhibiting the growth of resistant bacteria.

Dycem Lounges Reinraum Germany information

Our dedicated German team members Sandro Krivic and Sara Watson were on hand to explain the benefits of why switching to a solution which leaves no waste in comparison to other contamination control methods, such as peel-off mats and shoe covers.

We look forward to attending the Lounges Cleanroom Process Show in Vienna, Austria on the 16th and 17th of October where Dycem will be situated at stand number W59.

For more information on the Dycem in German-speaking countries. Please email kontakt@dycemkk.de or call +49 (0)69 50604430.

Pharm Connect – Hungary



In Budapest, Dycem’s flooring solutions were also on show as our representatives from Eastern Europe took part in the Pharm Connect Exhibition.

Pharm Connect Congress each year brings an overview of the Central Eastern European trends and impacts on the pharmaceutical manufacturing and biomedical technology world. Dycem’s Stanislav Konvalina and Anna Karoui met with audiences, to discuss how the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries could benefit from the use of inhibiting up to 99.9% of contamination entering their clean and critical areas in pharmaceutical facilities.

Speakers at the show included Dr. András Ballagi, Chief Technology Officer at Diagon and Associate Prof. Dr. Ildikó Csóka Director of the Institute of Pharmaceutical Technology and Regular Affairs.

On average, 17% of total health expenditure in Europe is spent on Pharmaceuticals and other medical non-durables, meaning there is a massive need for the products created to be of top-quality standards.

Dycem Pharm Connect Budapest Hungary information

If you are situated in Eastern Europe and would like to try a free sample of Dycem floor mats for your industry or more information, please contact us today at Contact@dycem.com or on +44 (0) 117 9559 921.

Data Centre World 2019 – United Kingdom



Data Centre World in London brings future and vision to all aspects involved with the Data Centre industry.

Dycem works with data centres on a variety of levels, protecting server rooms, server- and rack entry and exit zones from contaminants such as dust and dirt and ensuring the reduction of up to 75% of airborne particles being released into the atmosphere. Which can cause severe problems.

Data centres have to follow certain regulations to monitor and control the level of contamination and dust entering their rooms.

Dycem mats also have the ability to reduce the risk of Electronic Static Discharge , another risk that Data Centres have to consider so that they avoid downtime.

Dycem Data Centre Wold London England information

The second time exhibiting at this event gave us the chance to delve further into the world of data centres and encourage visitors of the show that Dycem’s flooring solutions are a better and more sustainable solution to ensuring protocol is maintained to required standards.

Whilst at the show, Head of UK and Ireland Sales Jamal Al-Doori and Marketing Manager Mike Trevelyan demonstrated the various options available to Data facilities. These included Dycem’s Cleanzone solution, which can be a fixed or floating option and our CZ04 Access floor tiles, which allows for easy access to the cabling underneath the floor space.

For more information on how Dycem floor mats could help your Data Centre please contact us at contact@dycem.com or call +44 (0) 117 9559 921.

Contamin Expo – France



ContaminExpo is the flagship show for France when it comes to all things in the cleanroom and pharmaceutical industry.

Taking place in Paris, it played host to a wide range of exhibitors and visitors from various parts of Europe, with a congress and a large exhibitor space both taking place at Paris Porte De Versailles.

Dycem Floor mats were on show at stand F16 where we offered the opportunity for visitors to interact with our Team France members by taking part in the Dycem France Golf Putting challenge.

Using a Dycem Floating system as a putting green, the team of Stewart Hyde, Thibault Derivry and Cedric Francoise were on hand to challenge visitors with the aim of demonstrating information on Dycem’s functionality, to win a very special prize – a mat to take back and trial in their own cleanroom or controlled environment.



As displayed in the video, our contamination control solutions are available in a variety of colours, and sizes providing customers with the option of being able to customise their flooring solutions to suit their decontamination needs.

For further information about Dycem in our French-speaking countries please contact us at contactfr@dycem.com or visit www.dycemcc.fr.

Cleanroom Technology Exhibition – Birmingham, UK


Dycem Contamination Control floor mats exhibitied at the Cleanroom Technology Conference in Birmingham, UK, taking place on 21- 22nd May at the National Conference Centre.

Exhibiting with partners Elis Cleanroom and Vileda Professional, the team of Graham Chalker and Carlos Mourelle were on hand to offer advice and information on how Dycem Contamination Control floor mats are used and how beneficial they are when implemented in a cleanroom environment.

Dycem Cleanroom technology information

Upcoming Event information



If you are visiting a show where Dycem is exhibiting in the next few months, come and find us!

Dycem Europe GmbH will be heading to Geneva, Switzerland from June 18th – 21st, as they take part in EPHJ Salon International at the Palexpo Exhibition Centre.

Dycem will also be heading to Galway Racecourse to take part in Medical Technology Ireland from September 25-26th.

We look forward to seeing you at all of our upcoming events!

Why You Should Stop using Disposable Tacky Mats and Peel-Off Mats [The Facts]

3rd October 2019

Disposable Tacky Mats

Disposable tacky mats and peel-off mats are often used when it comes to contamination control procedures.


It is well known that critical environments, cleanroom or controlled areas should be protected within the manufacturing facility. This is to minimise the presence of both viable and non-viable contamination during manufacturing.

Foot and wheel-borne contamination are the two major sources of both viable and non-viable contamination.

It is essential that some form of control or preferably, removing these particles entering cleanroom areas is practised.

This is due to contamination particles which can affect productivity, product quality and cost.

Disposable tacky Mats and sticky mats have been the go-to solution to use to reduce these forms of contamination for a while. However, there are many reasons to suggest why these so-called solutions are causing more problems than they are solving.

Tests by GlaxoSmithKline have proven that disposable sticky peel-off tacky mats are only 27% effective in preventing foot and wheel-borne contamination, yet there are various problems when it comes to using disposable sticky mats and peel-off mats.

Size Matters

On average disposable tacky mats has a surface area that is 5 times smaller than your average Dycem Contamination Control floor mat.

This is too small to decontaminate effectively and makes full wheel-borne decontamination almost impossible.

A singular peel-off mat, 2’ x 4’ can still cause up to 73% contamination to enter your critical environments. Even when 10 of these sticky mats are put together 20% of the contamination ‘captured’ is still entering your critical areas and contamination-free zones.

Tacky Mats 1

This shows, that no matter how many sticky mats you put together, the risk of contamination entering areas that you don’t want it to is still very much high.

A Non a – peeling solution

Peeling away each used tacky mat from a disposable pack, leaves you with a layer of contamination you are unsure what to do with.

When ripping the sheets of plastic, you are releasing on average 215,000 particles back into the atmosphere with most of the waste particles returning to the air and surrounding environments or even worse – your protected area.

Peeling a disposable sticky mat generates a 20cm (8”) ball of waste each time a single mat is ripped. This makes enough waste to fill multiple dumpsters/skips in a single year. (average estimates have proven between 8-25 dumpsters).



As the surface area of the disposable sticky mat is exposed to contaminated particles, it should be treated as secondary waste. This costs more to remove of safely and also cannot be used again.

It’s Proven Science

In tests comparing disposable tacky mats and peel – off sticky mats with Polymeric flooring, there was found to be a much higher reduction in the microbial count for both wheel and foot contamination after contact with the polymeric flooring. This was comparing it with the results that were achieved for peel-off sticky mats.

Performance of the sticky mats is also greatly reduced with overstrikes.

Overstriking happens when each person stops and takes at least three steps with each foot.

To compare, if overstriking on polymeric flooring, a further 90.3% of particles are taken away from overshoes.

This is compared with an increase of up to 381.9% falling back on to the shoes using peel-off mats. (Source: Dr Tim Sandle).

Imperfect and impractical

To achieve an adhesive peel-off mat’s optimum 27% effectiveness they need to be peeled after every use.

This is not only time wasting but it is also very impractical and a hazard to the areas that you are trying to protect.

The use of sticky peel-off mats also presents a health and safety risk.

The sticky surface often pulls and rips overshoes and causes a severe tripping hazard.

It can also cause the ripped pieces of mats to wrap around wheels.

Tacky Mats 2

Sticky mats also cannot allow the three full wheel rotations needed to remove contamination from wheeled traffic.

This makes it very hard to control cross-contamination in corridors.

Crippling Cost

Disposable tacky mats and peel-off mats might seem to be the cheapest option at first glance and this would be ideal for companies and facilities who are looking for a quick fix and to save money.

However, when looking at polymeric flooring with peel-off sticky mats, polymeric flooring not only costs less over the longevity of both products but most critically it outperforms the main selling points that a peel-off sticky mat has to offer, by a long way.

The cost of disposable peel-off mat times by 10 (to create the size needed for six footsteps or three full wheel rotations) is added to the number of peels per shift, multiplied by the number of shifts per day, then multiplied again by the days operational per year multiplied by 2.

Tacky Mats comparison
Waste from Disposable Tacky Mats

The contaminated waste, mixed with disposal costs created with disposable tacky mats are not to be ignored.

Every peel of a sticky mat results in a 20 cm ball of contaminated plastic waste.

This sized ball of waste is created when peeling off a mat layer. Generating enough waste to fill multiple dumpsters per year.

Alongside this, as this is classed as secondary waste, peel-off mats not only create an abundance of the unneeded waste again, cost becomes a factor as they are very expensive to dispose of properly at the end of their very short, working life.

This, coupled with the usual placement of only one peel-off mat outside critical areas can be very dangerous.

Find out more about more information about how you can reduce using single-use plastics in contamination control in our feature article on single-use plastic in contamination control here.

Time to for you to get out of your Sticky Situation

Dycem Contamination Control Floor Mats offer lots of resolutions that peel-off sticky mats cannot offer.

They are made with a Patented, polymeric compound with a natural tack, rather than a manufactured sticky feel like a sticky peel-off mat would have.

Dycem Mats are proven to keep up to 99.9% of foot and wheel-borne particles from going into unwanted areas.

All of Dycem’s products can be cut to any length or width to make a large enough surface area to allow up to 99.9% decontamination of foot and wheel-borne traffic.

Tacky Mats 3

So, Why Dycem?

Dycem is easily placed into your SOP and can be cleaned as part of your standard floor cleaning schedule.

Dycem does not impact on your daily waste volumes and It can be removed of in regular waste.

Tests have proven that when Dycem floor mats are viewed against sticky mats, the average percentage reduction for polymeric flooring was much greater for Dycem than for peel-off tacky mats.

This was for both wheel and foot-borne contamination. (Clibbon)

Dycem Floor Mats are also a washable solution rather than a disposable, peel-away solution.

This cuts the costs and time that waste added significantly over time and use.

For microbial benefit, Biomaster is placed into all Dycem products.

Biomaster is silver ion-based, anti-microbial addition. it is proven to provide effective and non-stop protection on more than 50 different organisms.

These organisms include Salmonella, E. coli, listeria and MRSA. Sticky peel-off mats do not offer this feature.

Tacky Mats alternative 1

Dycem also has room to reduce Electrostatic discharge.

This is due to all options having a surface resistivity of 108 ohms something again, peel-off sticky mats cannot offer.

Make the change Today

If you wish to switch to from disposable sticky peel-off mats to a more longer-lasting,  environmentally-friendly, washable and reusable solution, please contact Dycem today on +44 0117 9559 921 or email Contact@dycem.com

Reduce Using Single-Use Plastic with Dycem [Contamination Control]

15th September 2019

Single-Use Plastic Contamination

Contaminated plastic waste is harmful to your environment, therefore by using disposable peel-off mats and plastic overshoes, YOU are harming your environment.


The anti-plastic movement is widespread in today’s day and age.

Social media, news websites and near enough all modern day advertising remind us of the millions of tons of plastic waste produced yearly across the globe.

With about half of the plastic ever manufactured having been produced in the past 15 years. The collaboration of industry in reducing production and improving recycling is increasing in importance.

In our daily lives, we are encouraged to make simple swaps such as using reusable coffee cups.

Alongside this, supermarkets have issued 83% less plastic bags since charges for these commenced in 2015.

There are many ways to curb plastic waste.

Producing less, consuming less, and better managing the waste that already exists to prevent contamination or leakage. These are just various ways to stop single-use plastic use.

But how does this mentality transfer into the workplace? Particularly into environments where contaminated waste is prevalent.

Contaminated Plastic Waste in the Workplace

According to statistics reported by the World Health Organisation (WHO), 15% of waste generated by health-care activities is considered to be hazardous: infectious, toxic, or radioactive.

Contaminated waste contains potentially harmful microorganisms that can infect hospital patients, health workers, and the general public.

Other potential hazards may include drug-resistant microorganisms. These spread from facilities into the environment.

Also, the disposal of untreated contaminated waste in landfills which can lead to the contamination of drinking, surface, and ground waters if those landfills are not properly constructed.

Additionally, to these toxic side effects, open burning and incineration of health care wastes can under some circumstances result in the emission of dioxins, furans and particulate matter.

Aside from the environmental impacts of contaminated plastic waste, this can also cause immense problems within the work environment.

Lack of awareness about the hazards related to contaminated plastic waste, inadequate training in proper waste management, absence of waste management and disposal systems, insufficient financial and human resources and the low priority given to the topic are the most common problems 

Waste from Peel-off Mats

The hazardous/contaminated waste, coupled with disposal costs created with peel-off mats are not to be ignored.

Every peel of a sticky mat results in a 20 cm ball of contaminated plastic waste.

Plastic Screwed Up

A 20cm ball of waste is created when peeling off a mat layer (generating enough waste to fill multiple dumpsters per year).
Also, being classed as secondary waste, peel-off mats not only create an abundance of uneeded waste but are very expensive to dispose of properly at the end its very short working life.

Further to the waste and cost implications with the use of peel-off mats, tests by GlaxoSmithKline show that disposable adhesive peel-off mats are only 27% effective in preventing foot and wheel-borne contamination.

The average 2’x4’ sized peel-off mat is too small to decontaminate effectively, and this makes full wheel-borne decontamination almost impossible.

This, coupled with the usual placement of only one peel-off mat outside critical areas can be very dangerous.

Ganging Peel-off Mats Together

Ganging peel-off mats together does address the size issue.

However, the practical issues, labour and material costs involved in peeling 8-10 mats several times each shift makes this an expensive option.

10 peel-off mats ganged together means there is a 20% risk of contamination entering a critical area if peeled twice per shift (Source: Mcon).

Also, when ganged together, peel-off mats can harbour contaminants in the gaps between them.

Particle Build Up

The performance of peel-off mats is greatly reduced with overstrikes.
With every step, contamination builds up in layers on feet and this buildup of contamination is not effectively removed after one or a couple of steps on that area.

In addition, particles readily transfer back onto footwear, increasing the risk of contamination.

Peel-off mats also cannot allow the three full wheel rotations necessary to decontaminate wheeled traffic.

These tacky, tearable mats are also prone to wrapping around wheels of trolleys and carts.

This makes it impossible to control cross-contamination in corridors.

Alongside this they are prone to heavy saturation very quickly, reducing their efficiency in heavy traffic environments.

Adhesive from the mats can be transferred onto wheels and tracked into critical environments.

Peeling of Mats

A study commissioned by a peel-off mat manufacturer highlighted the problem of particle shedding during the rip up process of peel-off mats.

The tests revealed that on average, 215,000 particles were released during the rip-up process – releasing hundreds of thousands of particles back into the atmosphere.

Plastic dust Single Use Shoe Cover Waste

Similarly, the use of multiple pairs of shoe covers, per shift per employee add similar amounts of plastic waste expenditures – not to mention the financial implications for the purchase of shoe covers and costs to the disposal of contaminated waste.

Many manufacturers and/or distributors claim good traction, durability, waterproof capabilities and most of all contamination avoidance when selling shoe covers.

However, the materials the shoes are produced from (chlorinated polyethene, polypropylene, PVC) all have inherent weaknesses that could create a risk to your critical environment.

Plastic

Potential risks with shoe covers, such as ripping and slipping, will depend on the materials they are made from. Polypropylene (PP) presents several problems in a controlled environment setting. PP is a non-woven material, which means that it can and will shed particles.

Furthermore, the highest risk is not necessarily through the usage of the shoes but applying them to feet. Using dirty/unwashed hands bypasses the purpose of having shoe covers and adds contamination to the underside even before entering critical environments.

How can Dycem make a difference?

Plastic Shoe Covers Particularly within industries adhering to strict hygiene standards and needing to reduce dust particles within their working environments, common methods of controlling these types of contamination include shoe covers and overshoes.

These common contamination control methods such as shoe covers or peel off mats may appear effective however increase your organisation’s plastic waste significantly.

Their low initial cost of alternatives may seem attractive, however, when comparing Dycem with peel-off mats and shoe covers, Dycem not only costs less over the longevity of both products but, most critically, Dycem vastly outperforms in terms of size, quality and retention of decontaminants – significantly reducing contamination risks to your business.

Dycem can be cut to any length or width to produce a large enough surface area to allow 99.9% decontamination of foot and wheel-borne contamination and is washable.

In order to get near comparable performance to Dycem, at least 8-10 peel-off mats, tacky mats or sticky mats need to be ganged together and peeled regularly. Dycem is also seamless, thus avoiding this contaminant trap.

When overstriking on Dycem a further 90.3% of particles are removed from overshoes, compared with an increase of up to 381.9% being deposited back on to the shoes using peel-off mats. (Source: Dr Tim Sandle).

Cost comparison Peel Off Mats vs. Dycem

Peel off Mat Cost

Peel-off mat cost x 10 (to create the size of Dycem) + peels per shift x shifts per day x days operation per year x 2 (Redisposal) Costs.

Dycem Cost

0 peels required x 2 shifts per day x 7 days per week (12-month replacement contract per pricing matrix).

Cost comparison Shoe Covers vs. Dycem

Shoe Cover Cost Formula

Shoe cover x 2 (= 1 person) x individuals per shift x shifts per day x days operation per year. What also should be considered is time lost putting on and removing overshoes, and the amount of entry and exits per person per day in and out of the environment.

Dycem Cost

0 change over required x 2 shifts per day x 7 days per week (12 monthly replacement contract per pricing matrix)

Disposable Plastic Alternative
The Environmental Benefit of Dycem

Dycem is easily integrated into your SOP and can be cleaned as part of your regular floor cleaning schedule. Dycem does not impact on your daily waste volumes and can either be disposed of normally in regular waste or recycled into less critical applications (after its minimum 3-year working life).

For more information on Dycem as an environmentally friendly alternative for your contamination control needs, please visit here and contact us today at contact@dycem.com or on +44 (0) 117 955 9921

Electrostatic Discharge Protection [Dycem ESD Floor Mats]

2nd July 2019

Electrostatic Discharge Protection at floor level is essential in ensuring electrostatic charges don’t affect productivity.

The majority of people encounter electrostatic charges or discharges (ESD) through commonplace processes such as  the crinkling feeling after emptying clothing from a tumble dryer, scuffing or walking across a carpet and grabbing a door handle, holding onto metal stairway railings, escalators or more awkwardly when shaking hands with other people and receiving a shock.

To offer an explanation In layman’s terms, ESD occurs when two materials rub together causing friction and thus positively charging the material.

Once your body comes into contact with this the positive charge is transferred to you and escapes you when possible resulting in what is commonly referred to as an “electric shock“.

The human body is capable of storing a charge up to 25,000V. This charge is then dissipated (ESD) through the receiving object as the current seeks an unimpeded path. An object’s metal chassis will often act as the conductor for the static to strike, but it can occur through other materials.

The amount of charge that is created through the friction of commonplace procedures, however, is not significant enough to create large volumes of electricity – in other words, you will not see a lightning bolt spark from your hand after moonwalking across the carpet and opening a door through touching the door handle.

Electrostatic Discharge Protection from an Industrial Perspective

From a more industrial perspective, however, these jolts of charge or electricity can cause enormous disruption to everyday workflows and even endanger various operating procedures. The most well-publicised problems surrounding ESD occur within electronics and semiconductor industries, however, ESD  can have significant impacts within the chemical, pharmaceutical, medical device manufacturing and the explosives industry.

Contamination and static control procedures and products to aid within this process have been used since the 1400s across Europe and the Caribbean particularly within military operations to assist in the prevention of unwanted ESD within ignition in storage areas for gunpowder.

Within the 1900 century in paper manufacturing mills in the USA processes to ensure grounding and attempts at flame ionization were put in place to dissipate static electricity throughout the drying process of paper.

In present times, with the increased use of technology and reliance thereupon however current day discussions on ESD mainly surround electronic device and semiconductor manufacturing. The increase in device sensitivity and technology within the electronics industry moving more towards nanotechnology, this heightens the measures manufacturers, processors and fabricators need to set in place to ensure protection for  ESD safe working environments.

These are imperative to ensure a safe operating environment for workers and perhaps more importantly to protect the product quality and product yield. The presence of ESD charge can compromise the integrity of an electrical appliance, semiconductor or chip wafer impacting its functionality or worse destroying them completely.

The smaller the device the more storage it can generate thus making it more susceptible to damages caused by ESD or poor contamination control procedures.

Electrostatic Discharge Protection from ESD Enemies

An additional aspect often given less emphasis to within ESD discussions is charged surfaces‘ increased ability to hold contaminants – such as dust particles, compromising the sterility of environments.

Dust is one of the main enemies that can trigger triggers ESD occurrences.

The introduction of dust contamination and said contaminated particles into a highly sensitive environment such as semiconductor manufacturing can be detrimental to production.

Considering Impacts of Electrostatic Discharge

it is essential to consider the impacts of contamination within ESD.

To avoid the detrimental impacts of ESD charge, however, it is imperative to understand the basics in order to set up procedures for a productive working environment.

These basics include explanations of Triboelectric charging. This process entails the induction of contact electrification once materials are separated.

The surface area of one of the materials that have been separated becomes positively charged due to the loss of electrons which are passed on to the other material which retains its electrons and takes on the new ones and thus becomes negatively charged.

Additionally, induction generates a static charge. This charge induces opposing polarity changes upon surfaces of other areas thus attracting particles.

Upon establishing a floor level connection with the ground can result in dangerous ESD impacts.

When charged, surfaces are more likely to attract and bind particles that would usually continue within an airborne environment.

The difficulties arise when particles particularly sub-micron particles attach to surfaces as these pose difficult for removal.

Electrostatic Discharge Protection Sign

Regardless of how stringent the regulations are, particles WILL be present within controlled or cleanroom environments. These can occur through personnel, production equipment or the process itself.

It is near impossible to completely prevent the generation of static charge within cleanrooms and controlled areas.

There are however a number of different processes and Electrostatic discharge protection products in place to reduce static charge risks and particularly within cleanroom environments, these include extensive use of grounding static dissipative and conductive materials such as ESD floor mats.

Electrostatic discharge protection mats and other grounding materials within cleanroom and controlled environments aim to control the distribution of charge upon materials created through people or equipment.

It is unfortunate however that although introduced to improve ESD requirements within cleanrooms, significant amounts of products used within these sensitive environments contribute to the generation of ESD and charge of products.

Examples of these counterproductive products include the use of cleanroom sticky mats.

Commonplace within electronics manufacturing, tacky mats are placed prior to entering controlled or classroom environments.

The sticky mats are to be walked upon or have wheel traffic rolled across and the glue contained within the sticky mat aims to remove dust and particles prior to entering the cleanroom areas.  The contents of the surface of the tacky mat with the glue bring problems of their own.

One of the main issues include remnants of the glue remaining attached to shoes or wheels while entering into the sensitive areas or even tearing and damaging overshoes thus exposing contamination and endangering the environment within the cleanroom.

Further issues include the peeling process of sticky mats. Depending on traffic on the tacky mat itself, these need to be peeled very frequently.

Tests were undertaken with leading sticky mat manufacturers highlight that with every peeling of a foil, 215,000 particles are re-released into the atmosphere – thus eradicating the intended contamination control aspects. Circling back to the increased appearance of contamination through charged materials, contrary to functionality cleanroom sticky mats are often placed within or prior to these sensitive areas to capture dust and particles.

The contact made with the sticky mat material as well as the glue and the shoe or wheel that is moving across the mat produces further electrostatic charge thus improving the propensity for contamination to settle due to dust particles being easier attracted to charged surfaces.

For further information on sticky mats use within contamination control and how to reduce their waste read visit our other blogs:

Stop Using Tacky Mats

Single Use Plastic Waste in Contamination Control Products

Reducing Electrostatic Discharge with Dycem




To reduce ESD dangers and introduce an ESD sensitive product, Dycem ESD flooring provides an effective, longlasting solution to help with your ESD needs.

As explained previously it is almost impossible to avoid static-generation completely.

One of the main solutions to avoid damage to ESD sensitive equipment is to create an environment that inhibits the build-up of static and provided Electrostatic discharge protection. This can include the exclusion of highly charging materials from the controlled area and use of grounding mats, such as Dycem’s contamination control mats or flooring, which are proven to dissipate static at 108 ohms and reduce the damage it can cause.

The Dycem Workzone ESD flooring has been specifically designed as a static dissipative solution. Dycem WorkZone has been specially designed to be effective electrostatic discharge protection from contamination control method for areas subject to heavy wheeled traffic.

Dycem Workzone ESD flooring is the best solution for heavy wheeled traffic as it effectively attracts, collects and retains contamination from the wheels of forklifts, pallet trucks, as well as preventing static and ESD. Where typical ESD or anti-static flooring solutions only tackle static discharge, Dycem contamination control flooring traps it and neutralizes it.

The other benefit that comes from implementing Dycem flooring as a static control measure is that it is able to trap and retain particulate matter to prevent further failures from occurring as a result of dust and dirt contamination.

The other benefit that comes from implementing Dycem flooring as a static control measure is that it is able to trap and retain particulate matter to prevent further failures from occurring as a result of dust and dirt contamination.

In addition to Dycem’s Workzone solution as a fixed ESD floor and grounding mat and contamination control solution, Dycem’s anti-static Access tile range offers an additional bespoke product favoured within the data centre industry to reduce data loss, hardware failure, dust explosions and zinc whiskers by preventing dust and dirt from entering your system.

Available in two options, Dycem can be easily and quickly installed in your facility with your exact contamination control requirements in mind. The inlaid access tile, containing pre-applied Dycem, replace your existing tiles, forming an ideal option where a seamless flooring solution and regular access to cabling is required.

Electrostatic Discharge Protection Dycem Floating Floor Slate

Dycem’s Electrostatic Discharge Protection flooring solutions offer electrostatic Discharge Protection and have been implemented in various industries to support dissipative static needs of ESD sensitive environments.

Although functioning specifically for contamination control and ESD flooring purposes, on occasion customers have implemented Dycem upon worktop surfaces to assist in dust collection upon the work surface rather than allowing the dust and contamination particles to easily enter the sensitive products that are being worked upon.

Dycem is easily implemented within your existing facilities and has a longevity of 3-5 years. We can support your contractual needs, and provide an efficient Electrostatic Discharge Protection system for your ESD control.

For more information on Dycem as an ESD dissipative product and a grounding mat solution for your ESD and dust contamination control needs, contact us today at contact@dycem.com or on +44 (0) 117 955 9921

Dust Explosions- A Contamination Risk [Interview with the Experts]

29th March 2018

Dust explosions remain an under-reported issue, but a very real concern in the pharmaceutical and chemical manufacturing industry.



Combustible or explosive dust can be described as any finely divided particulate solid, which presents a fire or explosion hazard when dispersed in the air.

The powdered and granulated ingredients which are central to pharmaceutical and chemical manufacturing processes are naturally prone to creating dust, which can become airborne.

Once the airborne dust is captured at its source, it must be effectively contained. This reduces the risks of a further, more devastating dust explosion, and reduces the risk of cross-contamination in sensitive products.

ATEX zones

ATEX zones are critical areas subject to high volumes of dust or gases, in which an explosive atmosphere could occur during ordinary operation, or through unattended risks.

‘ATEX zones are risky due to the high concentration of flammable dust and powders in a confined environment, combined with reduced humidity rates and high or low temperature levels,’ explains Andrea Catellono of A.C. Supply.

‘ATEX zones, generally, should implement dissipative flooring throughout the area. Good dissipation is a mandatory safety requirement in a critical zone.’

We recently caught up with Electrostatic Discharge specialist and Asia Sales Director, Jhun Yparraguirre, who has worked closely with Dycem to help international businesses in Asia, including Samsung in Indonesia with their queries surrounding ESD.

Jhun Yparraguirre


Many Electronic manufacturing companies have an important use for expert advice such as Jhun’s, when it comes to ensuring they get the best possible facilities to manufacture their product successfully.

In simple terms, how is Electrostatic Discharge (ESD) generated?

“Electrostatic discharge is a rapid transfer of static charge which occurs between objects at different voltages when they make contact.”

Is it difficult to control wheeled traffic in an ESD environment?


JY: “No. As long as your flooring is ESD safe then it should be easy for you to control. Know your flooring system, and whether it is conductive or static dissipative, as the resistance values are different.

Once you have ESD flooring, make sure that your carts are made of stainless steel. Metal is a good conductive material.

Also be aware of your casters. Some casters are not made from ESD materials. This is why some end users choose metal casters, as they offer good continuity from the surface to the ground. Otherwise, a good design of drag chain is very helpful for the dissipation of static charge.”

What types of contamination are likely to trigger ESD? Where do they come from?


JY: “Dust is one enemy which triggers ESD events. Let’s go back to basic physics and chemistry… · Dust or particles can be referred to singularly as an Atom. · An atom is the smallest component of an element, embodying the chemical properties of the element. · An atom has two different potentials; a proton and an electron.”

Can you differentiate the two?


JY: “Yes; · A proton is a stable particle with positive charge equal to the negative charge of an electron · An electron is an elementary particle which orbits the nucleus of an atom and is responsible for the flow of electricity Particles can be generated from anywhere and everywhere, from humans, to material, to machines, etc.”

How important is it to control ESD in an electronics facility, and what kind of impact does it have on everyday operations?


JY: “It can cause problems, such as high reject rates, high costs, loss in revenue and unsatisfied customers or angry clients.”

How does ESD threaten product quality? Are there any other dangers involved?


JY: “Devices become more sensitive to ESD as technology advances. Device geometries are made smaller to increase density and electronic/storage capacity. The more wafer-sized the component, the greater the capacity to store charge.

As technology develops, device geometries are radically reduced to deliver more speed, increased memory capacity and more features. Historically, these improvements have caused devices’ ESD threshold to go down.”

What are the biggest contamination threats facing electronics manufacturers today?


JY: “As mentioned, technology right now is moving more and more towards nanotechnology. The smaller the device is, the more storage it can generate but this makes it more susceptible to damages caused by:

1. An ESD event,


and

2. Poor contamination control.


As a result, restrictions on cleanroom environments are getting more advanced and sterner.”

How can these risks be prevented, and how does Dycem help to reduce the risks?


JY: “Dycem is a good contamination control solution, as it restricts 80% of the gross contamination source (dust and bigger particles) from entering critical environments, which is mostly found on floors.

Furthermore, Dycem is a flooring system that does its job, by trapping the particles so that they are unable to enter critical environments. Dycem can withstand overstriking due to its suppleness and natural tackiness. Before cleaning, dirt will stay on the surface of the flooring system, which is good because it will therefore not be cross-contaminating with other areas.
20% of gross contamination is airborne, and Dycem has the van der Waals properties which possess a short electromagnetic force that attracts particles towards the surface of the Dycem polymer.

Thirdly, Dycem is easily washable and does not generate a daily waste, unlike the traditional peel-off mat.”

Click for more information about how Dycem has helped the Electronic Manufacturing Industry.

Dycem Contamination Control – Anti-Static Technology [Prevent Electrostatic Discharge]

29th March 2018


A large number of world-leading organisations, such as Continental, ROHM, Techrepair, Micronit and Saab, have all implemented Dycem’s anti-static flooring for its static control benefits.

ESD (Electrostatic Discharge) flooring absorbs static electricity which can otherwise harm electronic components and cause catastrophic equipment failures.

Where typical ESD or anti-static flooring solutions only tackle static discharge, Dycem contamination control flooring traps it, and neutralises it.

The other benefit that comes from implementing Dycem flooring as a static control measure is that it is able to trap and retain particulate matter to prevent further failures from occurring as a result of dust and dirt contamination.

Fighting dust and dirt

IT industry research has concluded that up to 70% of computer-related breakdowns are caused by dust and other debris. If ignored, it can cause widespread damage in data centre environments.

People are a major source of contamination, transferring dust and dirt from their clothes, and especially shoes, into critical environments. When placed at entry points to controlled zones, Dycem creates an unavoidable barrier for large particles, which can otherwise create static through dust.

Bespoke solutions

In addition to a range of fixed contamination control solutions, Dycem’s anti-static Access tile range helps to reduce data loss, hardware failure, dust explosions and zinc whiskers by preventing dust and dirt from entering your system.

Available in two options, Dycem can be easily and quickly installed in your facility with your exact contamination control requirements in mind.

Inlaid Access Tile

The inlaid access tile, containing pre-applied Dycem, replaces your existing tiles, forming an ideal option where a seamless flooring solution and regular access to cabling is required.

Retro Fit Access Tile

The retro fit access tile can be easily and quickly installed on top of your existing tiles and comes with a complete outer edging system to allow unnoticeable transition on and off the tiled area.

If you would like to discuss contamination control options for your facility, simply get in touch for a free site survey today.

LISTERIA AND THE RISK TO HUMAN HEALTH [How Dycem Can Inhibit Bacteria Growth]

6th March 2018

Listeria can pose a huge threat to human health and the food production industry. Recalled batches can damage a company’s reputation; reduce consumer trust and ultimately, death for high-risk consumers.


Increasingly, consumers are more aware of the health benefits of consuming more fresh food as opposed to highly processed options. However whilst this is of benefit to health, consuming untreated produce is a leading contributor to foodborne illnesses. There have been large numbers of recalls in recent weeks due to possible risks of contamination of Listeria monocytogenes. The FDA website lists the recalled products and these instances have led to a greater understanding and acceptance of the need for more efficient pathogen control strategies.

The microorganism’s adaptations have enabled it to persist without the need for a host. As such, it may exist in decaying plant material or freshwater ecosystems, but this is currently not wholly understood. From these locations, it’s possible for the microorganism to enter the food processing environment and subsequently enter packing plants following harvest. As 16% of listeriosis cases are fatal, this is clearly something to be addressed.



Inadequate cleaning and sanitation of equipment at a packing plant for cantaloupes (in 2011, USA) was linked to post-harvest contamination of the product, as the pathogen had not been isolated from field samples. The article states that there were 147 cases and 33 deaths associated with this outbreak, as such, it remains the largest listeriosis outbreak on record.

The processing and packing stage is associated with the highest risk for contamination of fresh produce. This presents an opportunity for prevention and control measures. Dycem contamination control flooring has helped to eliminate the growth and spread of Listeria in critical food production areas by up to 99.9%.

An example of this was when Dycem provided a two-toned flooring solution to Rikshospitalet kitchen, a company who provide meals to Oslo’s largest hospital. The flooring solution was two-toned, highlighting a clean and dirty side, indicating to employees where outdoor and indoor apparel must be worn. In such a busy environment, it was integral that precautions were undertaken in order to minimise microbial counts and contamination to food.

Discover how Dycem can help you.

Dycem’s Two-Tone Systems [Tacky Mat and Peel-Off Mat Alternative]

6th March 2018

Dycem’s two-tone systems have proven an extremely popular way to inhibit contamination growth for our customers as a way of improving their Standard Operating procedures, making them an ideal system and solution for sites with heavy traffic, and strict auditing bodies.



Could your site benefit from a two-tone system?

• Simple workflow areas identified by colour coded Dycem, ideal for clean rooms, gowning areas and heavy traffic areas.

• Easy to keep clean, and highlights how well Dycem is working at retaining dust and dirt.

• Improved awareness from your staff that they are entering a critical access point.

• Identifiable by auditing standards as part of a well-maintained health and safety standard

• A full traffic light system can be used to identify different area classifications.

The two-tone is effective in almost every application, whether you use a clean room, air shower or a wet cleaning system.

At  Micronit, Netherlands, A two-tone system was created and installed wall-to-wall in the facility’s changing booth, to ensure that the Z-Effect traffic flow was safely contained.

”I had been looking at Dycem for a number of years”, says Tom Hassing, COO of Micronit Microfluidic, “and due to demand, it was well worth the wait.”  Micronit now has a sustainable system for their contamination control needs for three years or more.

Other examples of a two-tone system have included up to 5 different Dycem colours being selected to improve Standard Operating Procedures.

If you would like to discuss our two-tone options, contact your local representative or for general enquiries.

LOUIS PASTEUR: THE FATHER OF THE FIGHT AGAINST GERMS

6th March 2018

We have all heard of the term pasteurisation but do you know where that term comes from, and the processes involved in pasteurisation? Did you know the huge impact that it had on the wine industry, which it effectively saved?

The father of the process for whom the term was coined is also credited with other remarkable feats such as saving the silk industry in France and helping to eliminate diphtheria.

So who was the man who has effected forever the way we produce food and beverages?

By the time Pasteur was approached by Napoleon III, he has already paved a road into microbiology, starting his career at the University of Strasbourg in Chemistry.

The wine industry in France was facing great setbacks as their produce, which was world renowned and sought  after, would deteriorate during transportation and eventually spoil. Napoleon III asked Pasteur to look into the issue, after becoming notorious due to his ‘Germ Theories’ which were at the time thought to be extremely controversial.

“In a series of careful experiments, Pasteur discovered that heating wine to 55 degrees killed bacteria without ruining the taste. This process, later named pasteurisation, saved the wine industry, and cemented Pasteur’s fame. Today, it’s widely used to keep food free from disease.” BBC.co.uk, Louis Pasteur: The man who led the fight against germs.

Pasteur was well known across France at this point due to his extensive works.

A disease was rife across the silk industry that affected the silk worms themselves and he was asked to look into what had baffled so many others. Along with his wife Marie, Pasteur realised that the issue was in fact a parasite that caused infection in the insects and went on to teach industry workers that infected worms should be extracted from the rest and destroyed.

“His advice meant the silk industry survived, providing another boost to France’s economy.”

However, the brilliant career of the Father of Microbiology was not always reflected in his health and personal life.

At 45 he suffered from a stroke which left him partially paralyzed and of his 5 children only two would make it into adulthood.

Perhaps these tragedies made him more determined in his work; one of his daughters died in 1859 of Typhoid, which is caused by contaminated food and water.

After his stoke he continued to work from a laboratory that was set up for him by his colleagues, determined to continue his great discoveries. If “family tragedy framed his fight against illness” his resolve to work helped achieve his final victory. Pasteur is quoted as saying “the only thing that can bring joy is work”, a reflection of his devastating personal loses and his will to overcome them.

Read the full article here at BBC.co.uk: http://www.bbc.co.uk/timelines/z9kj2hv

Since his outstanding work, our understanding of germ theory and microbiology has continued to flourish, and nowadays there are many unique and innovative ways to control and reduce bacterial growth and contamination.  Join the conversation – #germtheory  

Step away from the peel-off mat…

8th February 2018

Peel-off mats, are you still using them to protect your controlled or sterile environment? Are they not working the way you’d like? Have you thought about a non-disposable option?

Many businesses are now choosing to switch to a longer-term solution than peel off or tacky mats, not just because of the environmental implications.

Dycem Contamination Control floor mats service various companies in the Pharma, Biomedical, Nutritional, Packaging, Healthcare, Electronics, Optical sectors, as well as many more.

Contamination Control-Zoning and coverage are two factors for the flooring in many establishments that have cleanrooms or facilities requiring protection from contamination. Having clear visual communication technology that signals the difference in areas in changing rooms, entrances and hallways can help to encourage better practices, avoid human error and actively guide footfall to allow for the maximum possible decontamination of foot & wheel traffic.

This is not just vital in Pharmaceutical or Biomedical facilities. Even for food processing and packaging facilities there is a clear need to mark out areas where staff must pay additional attention to their hygiene.

Our floor mats fully customisable. Dycem can be customised to reflect not only the differences between zones through the use of colour but also with VCT to guide footfall, company logos/branding and custom edging to suit all needs.

The flexibility of Dycem products also extends to size. Because Dycem can be a fitted long term solution, or a customisable mat available in a number of sizes, there is a Dycem solution designed to meet the needs of your facility.

Do peel off or tacky mats effectively cover your entrance/exit points between controlled areas? Are you getting 3 full footsteps in order to remove the maximum amount of particles?

If the answer to all these are no, then Dycem is the solution you need.

Dycem - better than peel off matsThe daily peeling of mats can make your standard operating procedures complicated and time consuming. Not only do daily peels require the attention of a member of staff, they must also be disposed of properly and safely. Dycem CleanZone and WorkZone floor mats are a washable flooring solution, which are easy to clean. Less waste to manage, better for the environment and less time consuming.

All of our products are protected by Biomaster; a silver ion technology that actively inhibits the growth of bacteria. Our custom made and washable systems can easily be built into your protocol, to simplify your SOPs and provide a complete and sustainable zonal concept. No more daily peels and complicated disposal procedures. With Dycem you have total control.

Interested in Dycem? Call today on +44 (0)117 9548 721 or email us at contact@dycem.com and your enquiry will be directed to your specific Dycem representative.

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