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Biosafety Level 4 Laboratory Tour

Biocontainment Suits and Biosafety Cabinets

Researchers in biocontainment suits conjure up images of danger. However, highly trained laboratory personnel in suits such as these perform their research day in and day out without incident.

Photo of a researcher working in a BSL-4 lab
Researcher working in a BSL-4 laboratory. (Source: U.S. Army)

Some Facts About Laboratory Safety Measures and Equipment

  • The airtight, pressurized suits have dedicated life-support systems that include redundant breathing air compressors, alarms and emergency backup air tanks, and a HEPA air filtration system
  • Work stations called biosafety cabinets serve as additional barriers protecting the worker and the environment. With their own inward-directed and HEPA-filtered air systems, these cabinets are designed to prevent potentially dangerous microbes from escaping

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Last Updated December 14, 2006