Environmental Health & Safety Video Training Series 




This video provides guidance for the safe use of centrifuges. It will introduce new staff to good laboratory practices and provide a meaningful technical review in safety for the more experienced laboratory worker.

Centrifugation isn't as simple as it appears. It requires a series of choices critical to both safety and effectiveness.

  • Which centrifuge?
  • Which rotor?
  • Which tubes and adapters?
  • What speed and for how long?
  • What level of containment?

It also requires skillful technique and safe work practices.

  • Avoid overfilling tubes or bottles.
  • Check to see that the rotor is seated on the drive hub correctly.
  • Balancing is critical.
  • Don't overload beyond the rotor's maximum mass.
  • With horizontal rotors, ensure all buckets are hooked correctly.
  • Do not run the rotor beyond its rated maximum.
  • Keep equipment clean and dry.
  • Apply vacuum grease to the seals at least weekly.
  • Make a habit of inspecting rotors.
  • Maintain rotor logs.
  • When centrifuging infectious materials always use aerosol containment tubes and rotors, load and unload rotors in a biological safety cabinet, and wait ten minutes before opening the centrifuge
Viewing time:  9:00 Minutes - Click here to view this video

Produced by Schumann Productions for the Howard Hughes Medical Institute Office of Laboratory Safety 


Used with permission