Laboratory & Chemistry
From the very beginning when gloveboxes were introduced to the market MBRAUN defined the industry standards – purity levels of better than 1 ppm for moisture and Oxygen set the base for world-class research for materials and processes which are highly sensitive to the reactive components in air.
For demanding applications in which even the presence of nitrogen is an unwanted process gas, MBRAUN offers as the only glovebox manufacturer active nitrogen-removal platforms utilizing proprietary in-house technology which is based on heated Titanium sponges.
Leading Glovebox Manufacturer - Made in Germany
Since the company was founded, university and industry research institutes have been the backbone of our success. Following the needs of our clients whose research activities are in the area of rare earths, catalysis, organic and inorganic synthesis, fine chemicals, lithium batteries or OLEDs taught MBRAUN how to design the currently highest-performing gloveboxes on the market.
Download our brochure to get an overview about common features for chemistry application:
How does an inert glovebox work?
Part 1: Sealing - Tightness
To prevent oxygen and water from entering the box, it is necessary to have a sealed system. For a MBRAUN glove box with 2 gloves, about 3ppm/h of oxygen enters the system. 60% of this amount is due to the permeability of the gloves. So the more gloves you have on a system, the higher the leakage rate.
Part 2: Closed-loop purification
To achieve low ppm levels by purging a volume exchange of approximately 10-12 times per hour is required. This means for a standard glovebox that 10 m³/h are required to reach and keep the levels of O2 and H2O at a low level (for reference a standard 50l/200bar gas tank contains 10 m³). As a result, purging has a high gas consumption and is therefore quite expensive. In addition, the attainable purity is limited by the purge gas quality.
Using a closed loop purification system reduces the gas consumption to almost zero and even allows to reach higher purities than the supplied working gas. Therefore, the operating cost is low.
Part 3: Gas Purification Unit
The core elements of an inertgas purifier are the integrated blower and the filter(s). The filter(s) contain two different filter beds – a molecular sieve to absorb moisture and a copper catalyst which reacts with Oxygen thus removing it from the inertgas stream. The blower is constantly circulating the working gas between the connected glovebox and the filter(s). As a result, contaminations are continuously removed, keeping the purity levels inside the glovebox below 1 ppm.
The capacities of the molecular sieve and the copper being limited, the filter will be saturated after a certain time. In this case, a fully automatic regeneration program will be carried out. A succession of phases altering vacuum, heating and purging with gas will allow the molecular sieve to be "dried" and the oxidized copper to be reduced into its original state, restoring the full filter capacity of the filter.
Part 4: Transfer via the antechambers
In order not to pollute the atmosphere inside the glovebox, any material which is transferred into or out of it needs to pass through an antechamber. After loading a component from the outside into the antechamber typically a sequence of vacuum/refilling removes air from the antechamber and replaces it with inert gas. MBRAUN recommends performing at least 3 vacuum/refill cycles to before opening the inner door of the antechamber. The time for a complete antechamber cycle for a standard antechamber is around 12 minutes but can be significantly shortened by using a vacuum pump with a higher capacity.
For materials which are not vacuum proof the antechamber can be upgraded with a purge function which allows to replace the air inside with inert gas without evacuating the antechamber.
Part 5: Solvent trap
Solvents are commonly used inside gloveboxes. However most solvents tend to react with the filter bed of the connected gas purifier reducing its filter capacity quickly. Some solvents even irreversibly damage the filter materials which require a replacement of them.
In order to avoid these unwanted side-effects of solvent vapours MBRAUN offers a range of solvent traps as an optional upgrade. Ranging from non-regenerable activated carbon filters to fully regenerable solvent filter units a comprehensive set of solvents traps is available.
Part 6: Analyzer - Atmosphere Purity Monitoring
For monitoring the O2 and H2O concentration inside the box, MBRAUN developed its own analyzers which are specifically designed to be used in combination with MBRAUN gloveboxes. They are specifically sensitive and accurate at lower concentrations of O2 and H2O ( < 1 ppm).
The analyzer is located at the gas outlet of the glovebox, measures continuously and informs the operator when it is time to regenerate the gas purifier. In combination with optional upgrades to analyzers can also be used to instantly purge the system with a high flow of inertgas in case the concentrations of O2 and H2O rise quickly as this indicates a major leak in the glovebox.
It is recommended to re-calibrate the sensors on a yearly base to ensure accurate reading of the O2 and H2O concentrations.
Our recommendations for laboratory:
Easy, Safe, and Fast way to dry and dispense solvents. The Solvent purification system (SPS) can be connected directly to a MBRAUN glovebox or use as a standalone unit. It can purifies up to 7 solvents per system.
The LABmasterpro glove box workstation offers enhanced features and benefits to meet the demands of our clients. As the flagship model, the LABmasterpro can be easily configured with our entire line of specially designed process tools and can be fully integrated with other third party equipment
The MBRAUN Acrylic Glovebox Workstation offers a cost-effective, mobile solution for inert atmosphere applications. A thick, clear, and durable acrylic shell allows optimum visibility and remains impermeable to ambient air. Standard Neoprene gloves provide excellent resistance to abrasion and chemicals. The Acrylic Glovebox Workstation can be configured to meet your project specifications and/or can simply be chosen from a variety of standard pre-defined configurations.