As beautiful and charming futuristic design may be, only the architect earns money with it. Anyone who builds a cleanroom makes sales and profits with technological processes.

This main insight should not prevent anyone from constructing beautiful buildings in which people enjoy working and which appeal to customers. But the old principle still applies: Form Follows Function. So first the purpose, then the design. After all, what brings the most beautiful design if it is impractical or, at worst, even counterproductive?

That is why the processes must be in the foreground when planning cleanrooms. The steps required to manufacture a specific product determine the layout of the room. The architecture creates the outer shell for the highly complex processes.

Good planners know that. They therefore ask first about the processes and then about the design. Because they know the technical necessities of building a cleanroom.

Unfortunately, decisions on construction projects are often made at a management level and that is far away from daily practice. This then leads again to these decision-makers being dazzled by the beautiful appearance of a building. They put the demands of technology at the back of the queue. This means that architects are awarded the contract instead of expert engineers.

This always leads to one consequence, which we see more and more often in practice, more costs and a lot of adjustments.

Again, nothing against architects. They play an extremely important role in the entire construction process – but not necessarily the first violin in the cleanroom projects. Unless they are among the rare examples that master the planning and realization of cleanrooms. In this case – which we certainly experience in practice – visually and functionally outstanding buildings can be created.

Nevertheless: If a client personally asks me whether he should rather commission an architect or a competent engineer to plan a cleanroom, I advise the engineer. Unless the architect has proven that he has the necessary cleanroom competence.

The ideal case, however, remains as before: a highly cooperative collaboration between the two scientific faculties.

– Architecture and technology –

Prof. Dr. Gernod Dittel