Here is a short tutorial on how to sterilize your equipments, materials, media and glassware using the big autoclave machine located in building 28 at RUC. The video below briefly introduces the autoclave machine, and presents the instructions that must be followed step-by-step throughout the process.
Watching this video however does not eliminate the fact that you must initially, be introduced to the machine by a technician before use.
Furthermore, this machine is only allowed to be used by RUC students and staff under the supervision of a technician, except in special cases.
Start off by reading the manual located above the autoclave door (shown below):
The Autoclave Machine Sterilization Procedure:
1) Initially, make sure the green arrow is pointing towards you (down), thereafter press on the door sign button (the square icon)for the door to open.
2) Place the wagon in front of the door and attach it to the machine by turning the handle.
3) Wear the heat-resistant gloves, push the autoclave rack out and fill it with the trays containing equipment, materials, glassware, media and waste that need to be autoclaved. However, organize it in such a way that all the liquid-containing samples (media, water, liquid-waste...) and all the non-liquid-containg samples (empty bottles, non-liquid waste...) are autoclaved separately each with its own program as shown in the Manual picture above (program 2 for Dry stuff and program 3 for Liquids).
4) In case you are autoclaving liquid-containing samples, place the Thermosensor in a bottle containing demineralized water of volume approx. the same as your largest liquid sample. And in case you are autoclaving Dry stuff, simply leave the Thermosensor laying inside the machine.
5) Now, push the rack back inside and press the door bottun to close the door. Thereafter, find the right program by pressing on the program bottun (the file icon).After you have chosen the right program,press the start button (the Ø icon) to start the cycle.
6) Fill-out the small booklet located next to the machine with the date you used the machine, the time, the cycle number and your name/group name.
7) After the cycle is over, which usually takes approx. 1.5-2 hours, an alarm sound will go-on. Accept it by pressing on the "Correct Character" (shown in the picture bellow)and then open the door to empty the machine.
Do not completely seal, close, the lids of the bottles to-be sterilized (keep them open, and slightly loose). This is done to avoid pressure from building-up inside the bottles and thus to avoid them exploding inside the machine.
Transfer all the waste into the big black bag located next to the machine.
Place everything in trays before putting it in the machine.
If unsure, confused or in doubt of anything, do not proceed with the process, instead ask a student assistant or a technician. Do not risk breaking down the machine, the entire building, several researchers and technicians depends on this machine to do their everyday job. Do respect this, and don't do anything unless you really really know what you are doing.