Stainless steel provides the design engineer with a material that
is infinitely suitable as the base material for glove boxes. Highly
resistant to all but the most aggressive chemicals, it remains stable
and resilient under high temperature and is not prone to sudden
structural failure. Stainless steel is readily fabricated into complex
structures and its surface can be prepared for low contamination
retention and maintenance.
A stainless steel glove box is structurally self-supporting and
can be designed as a rigid platform or assembly upon which other
components can be easily attached and adequately supported. Surface
finish can be natural, as it has no requirement for protective surface
Cost of material and the required use of skilled labour and special
equipment, make stainless steel an expensive option of ownership,
but of all the available materials it will prove the most cost effective
over time, giving many years of service without deterioration or
need of attention.
Generally used for "High Grade" specification systems,
but lower grade "General Purpose" systems may also use
stainless steel where conditions of use indicate this as a preferred
"High Grade" glove boxes are qualified by a bolted construction
and comply with a maximum leak rate of 0.05% of container volume
"General Purpose" glove boxes are qualified by using
conventional widow seals (eg as used on commercial passenger vehicles)
with a maximum leak rate of 0.5% of container volume per hour.
The difference in permitted leak rate is 10 times greater for "General
Purpose" window seals, and this reflects the acknowledged attainable
difference in leak rate between the two types of construction.
This permitted leak rate potentially exposes the gas purifier to
10 times the level of leakage, and whilst this may not affect the
ultimate attainable purity of contained gas environment, the gas
purifier will be required to take up contamination at a greater
rate and be exposed to more frequent regenerations.
The standard range of stainless steel glove boxes designed and
manufactured by Glove Box Technology Ltd, are all "High Grade"
Specification bolted construction with a maximum leak rate of 0.05%
of container volume per hour.