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By: Sinikka Freidhof on Dec 17, 2019 9:00:00 AM
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Manufacturing integrated circuits (or chips) is a highly complex process that presents unique challenges for industrial piping systems. Toxic, highly corrosive and flammable gases and liquids can compromise a system’s integrity, causing process leaks and premature failure. In addition, few piping materials can meet the high purity standards required for cleanrooms.

In the semiconductor industry, chlorinated polyvinyl chloride (CPVC) duct is used in systems designed to exhaust chemical fumes off the tools that make the processing chips. It is also used in galvanizing and chrome plating applications within other industries such as automotive and aircraft.

Ability to Withstand Aggressive Chemicals, High Temperatures

Nearly 60 different chemicals are utilized during the chip manufacturing process, including aggressive acids and bases such as sodium hydroxide. Facilities that depend on stainless steel pipe and duct generally line the steel with polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE).

Many semiconductor fabrication plants, however, are employing 24-inch (610 mm) and smaller Corzan CPVC duct to replace PTFE systems. Corzan CPVC chemically resists most acids, bases, salts, aliphatic solutions, oxidants and halogens to provide cost-effective, long-lasting solutions for hot corrosive fume and drain handling systems (refer to

Mechanical Properties to Withstand Pressure Conditions

Robust mechanical properties enable Corzan CPVC fume handling systems to withstand higher vacuum loadings and varying pressure conditions compared to traditional materials, especially at elevated temperatures.

Testing conducted at an independent test facility confirmed good performance in the harsh conditions typical in most fume handling applications. During testing, Corzan CPVC duct was taken to extremes under negative pressure conditions to validate the product’s structural integrity at higher temperatures. For performance details, please refer to and

Consideration should be given to the system design, as well as the method of fabrication and jointing, which may require additional system derating.

The use of compressed air or gasses is not recommended for use with Corzan CPVC ducting.

Flammability Resistance for Increased Safety

Flammability resistance enables Corzan CPVC duct to create a safer environment within semiconductor fabrication plants as it meets the American National Standard for Cleanroom Materials Flammability Test Protocol as set forth by Factory Mutual Approval 4910 for ducting, piping systems and sheet products. In addition, it also complies with EN 13501-1:2002 – Fire classification of construction products and building elements. Under this standards, Corzan products achieve a rating of B s1 d0, i.e. low flammability, low smoke development and no burning drops.

With a high Limiting Oxygen Index (LOI) of 60 percent, CPVC duct will not supply fuel for a fire in the form of oxygen under normal atmospheric conditions. The instant a flame is extinguished, the material will self-extinguish, and the burning will stop.