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When you deal with instruments that need to completely sterilized, either for medical use, clean room use, or just need to be clean for work, simply washing the instruments with soap & water simply won’t do. For real sterilization what you will need is an Autoclave.

An Autoclave sterilizes by using high-pressure steam to blast the instruments & tools for about 15-20 minutes. The temperature is usually about 121 degrees C. To put that in perspective consider that a kitchen dishwasher rarely goes above 75 degrees C, and usually operates at much lower temperatures.  This high temperature steam completely ensures that even the most stubborn and tough bacterias, virii, fungi are dead or dormant.

At Spectrum Scientifics we sell several models of Autoclave. The first is BenchMark’s Mini research Autoclave the BioClave:

This unit is small enough to fit on a lab bench (the overall size is 20″ L x 13.5″ W x 12.9″ H). yet large enough to have a chamber that is 6.7″ x 12.5″. You can see the chamber is able to hold a decent number of tools and other items:

The controls are automatic and easy to use. A second setting with this model allows the temperature toe run at 134 degrees C for tough jobs or stubborn items. The unit also features safety features such as a locking door that remains locked until pressure is equal – you wouldn’t want a face full of hot steam!

But maybe you need something bigger? For that BenchMark makes (and we sell it!) the 16L BioClave research autoclave. This autoclave has a larger 9″ x 13.75″ chamber that you can stand larger glassware up in if needed.

Same automatic controls with choice of temperature settings, as well as the larger chamber:

The Bioclave 16 can be attached to an optional thermal external printer that can provide a record of sterilization parameters.

Both models come with a 1 year warranty. The standard model operates on a 115V US current, but models that operate on 230V (British or European plug) are also available.


Comments on: "Autoclaves" (2)

  1. Hi,
    What is the difference between the BioClave Mini and a device like one of these autoclaves ?

    • The ‘stovepot’ style of Autoclave is not the best choice for many laboratories because the clamp-style lid holders often lack safety features. The unit you have linked to does seem to have safety features on the handles, but many lab technicians would prefer a door lock. The BioClave door cannot be opened until pressure has reached safe levels. The BioClave is easier to fill as the door is on the side, not filling from the top. The footprint is also smaller than most stovepot-style models. Also, the lack of breakable parts (valves and gauges sticking out) make the BioClave easier to maintain and move.

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