Pharmaceutical Fume Hoods

Flow Science pharmaceutical fume hoods are not for everyone!

But for those with the correct pharmaceutical materials they are hands down the best! Let’s find out why.

Most of Flow Science business is primarily driven by anti-cancer research. As with the research, custom projects continue to get more comple for compounding laboratories.


About Flow Sciences

Flow Sciences Corporate BuildingFlow Science has been in business for a little over 32 years and was established by Ray Ryan, who still runs the company, acting as president and CEO. Ray is a veteran, and Flow Science is a veteran-owned business. All products are designed and manufactured at the Flow Science facility in Leland, North Carolina. Leland is right outside of Wilmington on the Cape Fear River and the Atlantic Ocean. Flow Science makes standard products and custom engineered products. About half our business is in the standard product. Still, half of it is in custom-engineered or purpose-built solutions, where there’s engineering content to deliver a product to the customer.

Flow Science is a well-established company catering and supplying sophisticated pharmaceutical fume hoods to many industries, with the primary market being the pharmaceutical market.

  • Established by Ray Ryan, President and CEO in 1988
  • Veteran Owned and Operated Company
  • All Products are Designed and Manufactured in North Carolina
  • ISO 9001:2015 Certified for Manufacturing Quality

pharmaceutical Fume Hoods Industries Served

Pharmaceutical fume hoodsThe pharmaceutical market is divided into three levels. 1) Drug discovery, which is compounding laboratories level and the scale-up with a pilot plant they would use when they have the drug refined. 2) When the new product is defined, they’ll start making larger batch quantities, and they’ll start to prove to themselves that they can produce it on a larger scale. Sometimes scale-up and the pilot plant will also support clinical trials. They’ll make enough of the product at that level to support the clinical trials. And 3)  Full-blown manufacturing when there are containment pharmaceutical materials required. We also get into the pharmacy and in the hospital marketplace. It is a secondary market, but hospitals have compounding laboratories, and there is also an emergence of independent, for-profit specialty compounders all over the country. Compounding pharmacies are the ones that make specific medicines.

Specific drug lots for the hospitals would be in smaller batches and smaller quantities than commercial manufacturing. Flow Science also provides pharmaceutical fume hoods to a variety of other markets. The common ground is they’re making something in a compounding laboratories powder or a crystal form that’s going to have a high toxicity. Protection for the operator and the laboratory, and the cleanroom is paramount.  And that’s where Flow Science fume hoods come in. With the pharmaceutical enclosure that do this.

  • Flow Sciences Market PenetrationPharmaceutical Market Place
    • Drug Discovery
    • Scale Up/Pilot Plant
    • C-GMP Manufacturing
  • Pharmacy Market Place
    • Hospital Pharmacy (Non-Sterile and Sterile)
    • Pharmacy Compounders
  • Personal Care / Cosmetics
  • Additive Manufacturing / 3D Printing
  • Soaps and Detergent Manufacturers
  • Paints and Coatings Manufacturers
  • Exotic Hazardous Chemicals Manufacturers
  • Beryllium, Cobalt, Lithium and Other Hazardous Metals Manufacturers
  • Pesticide/Agricultural Products Manufacturers
  • Animal/Veterinary Products Manufacturers

NIOSH’S Hierarchy Of Controls

A little bit of background. NIOSH is the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health. It can be called the compounding laboratories arm of OSHA. These folks are chartered with establishing exposure limits for many different materials and substances, whether they’re industrial materials, medical materials, or pharmaceutical materials. And they do that through a lot of compounding laboratories work and a lot of toxicity studies. NIOSH will establish the exposure limits and exposure bands that are permissible in the workplace. They have what is referred to as a hierarchy of controls. Flow Science participates here in the middle ground. It’s the engineering controls or the engineered solutions to protect people and or the compounding laboratories. Less effective than that would be PPE, where people are wearing masks or are in gowns and gloves to protect themselves from pharmaceutical materials.


Flow Science offers pharmaceutical fume hoods allowing clients to get away from the PPE in many cases and work with pharmaceutical enclosure or containment products. In the pharmaceutical environment, it’s very, very difficult because what we’re protecting against is actually the product. Clients can’t substitute the product for something else when they’re trying to refine it so that they can make it. In these cases, they’ll go to an engineered solution. That’s Flow Science.

Risk Assessment for Containment Pharmaceutical Materials

Once we know the exposure limits and the exposure bands that come out of NIOSH and out of industrial hygiene societies, then we can start to know the type of product that that is going to be best suitable to protect the operator or in the compounding laboratories. There’s a report referred to as OCB bands 1 – 5. Flow Science product’s come into play at OTB 3, which is moderately hazardous through OEB 5, which is very hazardous and can be extremely hazardous. This is the band where we start to build pharmaceutical enclosure and hoods and invented balance enclosures to protect people and the facilities.

OEB Health Hazard Chart

Risk Assessment Involves Many Factors Before a
Containment Recommendation is Made

The Consideration of the Application Includes Potency of
Material, Quantity, Task Duration, and Composition

The second element we want to understand the quantity. We ask questions about the test duration and then also the composition. Is the analysis an hour-long, or does it take a full day to do? That’s important to understand. And once we ask these questions and do the risk assessment, then we can start to match the appropriate pharmaceutical fume hoods for the application.

OEB of pharmaceutical fume hoods

In one case, we might have a standard product. Maybe it’s a single HEPA unit, or it could be a situation where it’s slightly more a toxic compound that they’re working with, so we may go with a pharmaceutical fume hoods dual HEPA top-mounted configuration. And then, if it’s an extremely toxic material, we may go to a dual HEPA configuration with a convertible hybrid isolator. A glove panel provides yet another layer of protection. It’s part of our job to support our clients in understanding what these hazard levels are and what these EBR bans are. So OEB stands for occupational exposure bans within each of those bands. There will be an L, which is referred to as an occupational exposure limit, and that’s an actual number. And it’s usually expressed in micrograms per cubic meter.

It’s a standard metric for determining how hazardous pharmaceutical materials. We ALWAYS ask for that number. Different companies take liberties with these bans. Merck Pharmaceutical, for instance, has its own OEB structure, and it might be slightly different from one of the other big guys. So if the customer says OIB for well, that’s helpful. But what actually is the number is that one microgram per meter cubed or a half a microgram per meter cubed. It’s something that we like to get into.


Vented Balance Pharmaceutical Enclosure

There are thousands of single pharmaceutical fume hoods HEPA units around the world. There are also the dual HEPA units. 

  • Many Exhaust Configurations
  • Vibration Elimination on the Work Surface
  • Balance Stability to 7 Places
  • 4” Pleated HEPA Filters for Low Cost of Ownership


Vented Balance Pharmaceutical Fume Hoods

So we’ve added a primary, and a secondary configuration that happens is in series that gives the customer another level of protection. In this case, it’s a classic application. It’s a weighing application. That’s a pharmaceutical fume hoods analytical balance here. And this customer is going to be bringing in, say, a half a kilo or maybe hundreds of grams. And they’re going to be weighing products out into smaller quantities for further analysis.

Vented Balance Enclosure- Dual HEPA
  • Many Exhaust Configurations
  • Vibration Elimination on the Work Surface
  • Balance Stability to 7 Places
  • 4” Pleated HEPA Filters for Low Cost of Ownership
  • Recirculate into Lab for USP 800


Hybrid Isolator Pharmaceutical Fume Hoods

This is another level of product. It’s the hybrid isolator. We also show a glove shield here. In this case, the customer might be working with something that’s very toxic. Maybe they’re working with half a kilo or 500 grams, and it could be, say, one hundred nanograms over a cubic meter of exposure. We help clients specify this equipment. This is a fully sealed glove box.


• Removable Glove Panel for Different Applications
• Two-Speed Fan Adjusts Face Opening Air Velocity
• Surrogate Powder Testing Below 50 ng/m3
• Polypropylene Frame with Acrylic or Glass Panels
• Master Port Accommodates Waste Chute,
Continuous Liner, RTP, and More

HYBRID ISOLATOR Glove Panel Glove Box pharmaceutical fume hoods


Glovebox Pharmaceutical Fume Hoods

We also make pharmaceutical fume hoods glove boxes as well. In this case, they’re working probably in nanogram per meter, cubed toxicity, very toxic stuff. No exposure whatsoever is allowed.  We also make standard configurations. As I mentioned, we make multitask work assembly for highly toxic material. It’s less than 10 nanograms, four meter cubed. We make we make purpose-built equipment, milling, applications of vacuum of an interfaces oven built with a flange into our unit so that when they open the vacuum up, there’s no there’s no breach of containment.

Glove Box pharmaceutical fume hoods
  • Designed for HPAPI and Oncology
  • HEPA Inlet Lateral Airflow Provides Interior that Meets or Exceeds ISO 5 Environment
  • Surrogate Powder Testing to Sub Nano Levels
  • Polypropylene Frame with Acrylic or Glass Panels

Multi-Task Systems Pharmaceutical Enclosure

Joined Systems for Continuous Process Applications


<10 ng/m3

Everything is contained in the end of the unit, Malverde and Sympatico. Buki Spray Dryer large part of our business is integrating various types of equipment into containment so that they can do the milling, where they can do the drying, where they can do the analysis totally into containment. And isolators as well.

Pharmaceutical Fume Hoods

Flow Science has become very busy in 2020 building pharmaceutical enclosure for a company called Broke and Elmer a leading instrument manufacturer globally.

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