Modern Fume Hood Systems Require Modern Test Methods

Thomas Smith, 3Flow

Fume hoods serve as the primary ventilated safety device used in labs to protect people from overexposure to airborne hazards. Adding variable air volume controls and features such as sash closure devices and occupancy sensors can help with efforts to conserve energy but only if they work properly. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requires all laboratories to ensure proper functioning of fume hood systems and they require appropriate test and maintenance methods. Face velocity tests alone are insufficient to verify and maintain proper performance. This presentation will describe modern fume hood systems and the tests required to enable safe, energy-efficient and sustainable performance.

Learning Objectives

  • Identify components of modern fume hood systems that enable safe and energy-efficient operation;
  • Identify factors affecting safety performance;
  • Specify appropriate tests methods to evaluate different types of modern airflow control methods; and
  • Understand the testing requirements to adequately evaluate and confirm performance of modern laboratory fume hood systems.


Tom Smith is the President of 3Flow. Mr. Smith has worked for more than 30 years helping facilities ensure proper performance of labs and critical workspaces. He holds degrees in Mechanical Engineering and Industrial Hygiene. Mr. Smith serves on numerous ventilation safety committees and serves on the I2SL Board of Directors.


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