If you’re responsible for overseeing the purchase budgets of a laboratory, there’s a good chance you’ve have had conversations about lab furniture. Chances are also high that you’ve been asked to compromise on that furniture, probably because of the high cost of so much else in the laboratory.
However, compromising on lab furniture is not a good idea. There are a number of reasons why buying dedicated laboratory furniture will actually be the best bet in the long run, and not just financially. The quality of your results could also be affected by the quality of your lab furniture.
Lab Furniture Safely Handles Lab Equipment
Let’s take, as an example, lab benches for mass spectrometry. Unless they’ve spent a lot of time outfitting labs, the average accountant probably has no idea how big, heavy and noisy mass spectrometers really are. They might think you could set one on an office desk and it will do just fine, when in fact the vibrations caused by the unit’s vacuum pump during operation can disrupt the mass spectrometer’s baseline. Furthermore, the roughing pumps are very noisy, making worker well-being a concern. So depending on non-dedicated lab furniture creates both a performance and safety issue.
Lab Furniture Helps Organize Lab Equipment
Even if strength were not a consideration, the ability to efficiently organize a workspace is another important aspect to bear in mind when choosing lab benches. Lab space is always at a premium, and there are often computers, printers and other devices that need to be connected with your spectrometers and other chemical instruments. There has to be sufficient space on and in the lab furniture to handle these other devices in an organized and orderly fashion.
Lab Furniture Extends the Life of Lab Equipment
Vibrations aren’t just a safety and performance risk; they’re also dangerous for the equipment. For example, vibrations in a mass spectrometer can negatively affect its internal turbo molecular pumps, but dedicated lab furniture like the IonBench MS is specifically designed to reduce 99 percent of vibrations created by a mass spectrometer. Reducing vibrations increases the life of the spectrometer, as well as any other equipment sitting on, or in, the lab bench. A dedicated lab bench of this type will also decrease vacuum pump noise by 75 percent, making your lab a much more comfortable and healthier place to work, and protecting everyone’s ears.
Decreasing vibrations and noise also increase the life of your lab equipment by decreasing the need for frequent maintenance. This is another good argument to offer when budget-conscious administrators start asking questions.
Lab Furniture Is Different for Each Type of Lab Equipment
Dedicated lab furniture is not just for mass spectrometers. Ultrasonic baths cause loud and annoying vibrations that could be an issue with cheaper metal tables. And since the smallest breath or quiet footstep can affect scales if they are set on standard furniture, solid lab bench is essential for getting accurate measurements.
There are some common misconceptions made, especially by those who don’t actually work in labs. It might be suggested that non-dedicated lab furniture is more flexible should you decide to reorganize the lab later. Unfortunately, this can lead to expensive modifications when the cheaper lab furniture is located where the largest, heaviest, noisiest machine needs to go.
The bottom line is that dedicated laboratory furniture is a wise and appropriate investment in the life and accuracy of your lab equipment, and the safety of your staff and the results they produce. For more information about lab benches for mass spectrometry and other types of specialized lab furniture, contact IonBench today.