Choosing the Right Material for Phenolic Examination Tables for Durability and Hygiene

In the bustling world of medical and laboratory environments, one piece of equipment consistently stands out due to its robustness, resistance, and impeccable hygiene properties – the phenolic examination table. This sturdy workhorse, crafted from phenolic resin and a substrate, plays a crucial role in healthcare settings, providing a durable and sanitary surface for various procedures. But what makes these tables so special? Let’s dive in and unravel the hidden virtues of phenolic examination tables.

Key Takeaways

  • Phenolic examination tables, made from durable phenolic materials, are valued for their longevity, chemical and heat resistance, and antimicrobial properties, offering a hygienic surface ideal for medical settings.
  • Various types of phenolic materials such as Black NEMA XX, Black NEMA CE, and Black G10 are available, each offering unique properties like electrical insulation, mechanical strength, and resistance to moisture and chemicals, making them suitable for heavy-duty applications.
  • Proper care and maintenance of phenolic examination tables involve regular sanitization after each use, avoiding abrasive cleaning agents, and damage inspections for signs such as cracks, chips, and discoloration to ensure their longevity and hygiene.

Phenolic Examination Tables: An Overview

Phenolic examination tables, such as the Phenolic Science Lab Tables, are specifically designed with a robust black phenolic resin tabletop. These tables find their place in a variety of settings, most notably in laboratories and operating rooms, where they serve as a reliable platform for a myriad of tasks.

Why are Phenolic Materials Used for Examination Tables

Phenolic materials offer superior characteristics for examination tables, including:

  • Durability
  • Heat resistance
  • Chemical resistance
  • Low failure rate

Their lightweight nature, easy-to-clean properties, resistance to many chemicals, and longevity make them an optimal choice for a wide range of applications, even when taking into account the empty question’s body.

Beyond durability, phenolic materials showcase excellent chemical resistance. Their compatibility with both organic and halogenated chemicals significantly contributes to their longevity and appropriateness for medical settings.

Phenolic materials also boost the hygiene of examination tables with their high resistance to chemicals, stains, corrosion, and abrasion. This feature facilitates easy cleaning and maintenance, ensuring a hygienic surface for medical examinations.

This makes phenolic materials a suitable candidate for public seating options as well.

Types of Phenolic Panels

Phenolic panels, also known as high-pressure or HPL panels, are commonly chosen for examination tables due to their resistance and durability. Their versatility makes them suitable for a variety of applications, regardless of whether an empty invalid email is provided.

Solid phenolic paper panels represent one type of these panels, which are made by immersing paper in thermosetting resins, reinforcing it with cellulose fibers and subjecting it to high pressure and temperature. Their resistance to scratches, stains, and fire, coupled with their easy installation and fabrication make them a top contender for examination tables.

Canvas phenolic panel is another category, which is created by merging multiple layers of canvas cloth sandwiched between resin and fibers, resulting in a durable and high-quality material suitable for a wide range of applications.

These qualities make them an excellent choice for examination tables and operating room table options, meeting the required criteria for such equipment. Before making a final decision, it’s always a good idea to review the specific features and benefits of each table and consider having a review write-up for further analysis.

Key Features of Phenolic Table Materials

Several phenolic table materials exist, each boasting unique features. For instance, Black NEMA XX is known for its excellent machining characteristics and dimensional stability. It’s a cost-effective option for examination tables, providing essential mechanical and electrical properties at a reduced cost compared to other materials.

Atlas Fibre offers volume discounts for large orders of material, further reducing costs for customers and allowing them to increase quantity. Phenolic laminate’s exceptional machining properties facilitate precision and ease during the manufacturing process, and its dimensional stability guarantees the longevity and durability of examination tables.


The versatility of Black NEMA XX stems from its ability to effortlessly complement a myriad of colors and styles. It is a neutral color that can enhance both bold and subtle designs, making it a versatile choice for various applications, including fixed height examination tables. Black NEMA XX is frequently utilized for electrical applications and as a material for phenolic examination tables.

Moreover, Renowned for its outstanding mechanical strength and electrical properties, Black NEMA XX is a phenolic material of choice. It demonstrates resilience across a broad spectrum of temperatures, ranging from cryogenic to elevated levels.


In contrast, Black NEMA CE is favored for heavy-duty applications because of its superior mechanical strength relative to paper, as well as its improved electrical properties and higher resistance to moisture. Black NEMA CE is a cotton-based phenolic laminate that possesses favorable mechanical properties, toughness, and high impact strength. It exhibits good wear resistance and is capable of withstanding temperatures up to 275°F.

Furthermore, Black NEMA CE demonstrates outstanding electrical insulation capacity, making it suitable for use in both dry and high humidity environments.

Black G10

Black G10 is another premium material but differs from the above options in that it has an epoxy base, renowned for its exceptional properties:

  • Exceptional strength and rigidity, thanks to the combination of epoxy resin and glass fiber in its composition
  • Superior resistance to heat and chemicals, making it a superior material in comparison to traditional phenolic materials
  • High strength-to-weight ratio similar to 6061 aluminum
  • Exceptional mechanical strength
  • Favorable dielectric loss properties

Black G10 has the following properties:

  • Retains robust electric strength properties in both wet and dry conditions
  • Well-suited for challenging industrial applications and outdoor settings
  • Strong chemical resistance
  • Lightweight nature
  • Robust strength

Choosing the Right Phenolic Material and Configuration for Your Table Needs

The process of selecting the appropriate phenolic material for an examination table necessitates the consideration of various factors such as:

  • Durability
  • Hygiene
  • Creating a contamination-free environment
  • Resistance to bacteria, fungi, and corrosion
  • Suitability of the material for the climate in which it will be used.

The high durability of phenolic materials makes them ideal for examination tables. They possess the following qualities:

  • Resistance to corrosion, abrasion, and impact damage
  • Low density
  • Good thermal insulation
  • Overall exceptional longevity

Durability and Longevity

In terms of durability and longevity, phenolic materials are distinguished by their impressive resistance and lifespan. They have the ability to resist flames, lack electrical conductivity, and demonstrate strong mechanical properties such as compressive strength. These attributes collectively enhance the material’s robustness, making it suitable for use in medical settings.

Phenolic materials offer several advantages when used for examination tables:

  • Superior longevity performance compared to other materials
  • Exceptional resistance to chemicals, heat, and impact
  • Maintains form and functionality even under heavy use
  • Expected longer lifespan compared to commonly used materials

Rounded and Beveled Edges

Rounded and beveled edges are preferred for phenolic examination tables as they:

  • Increase safety by minimizing injury risks
  • Offer a comfortable surface for patients
  • Facilitate easier cleaning and maintenance, which is crucial for maintaining hygiene standards in healthcare settings.

Rounded and beveled edges on phenolic examination tables augment safety by mitigating the risk of injury from sharp corners or edges. They also contribute to the aesthetics of phenolic examination tables by introducing visual appeal.

Dimensions and Weight Capacity

The choice of dimensions for phenolic examination tables should consider the available space and the intended use, thus ensuring functional suitability. Weight capacity is crucial to ensure that the table can safely support the expected loads, which also affects the table’s stability and durability.

The typical dimensions of phenolic examination tables may vary depending on the particular model and manufacturer. However, standard dimensions for phenolic examination tables generally range around 18 inches in width and 32 inches in length for the operating surface.

Atlas Fibre Produces Phenolic and Composite Sheets for Examination Tables

As a leading manufacturer of phenolic and composite sheets for examination tables, Atlas Fibre utilizing a diverse selection of thermoset materials that are highly suitable for examination tables. They offer custom sizing for their phenolic and composite sheets, enabling them to tailor materials to the specified dimensions according to the customer’s requirements.

Atlas Fibre has the capability to custom-cut materials to a wide range of sizes, offering thicknesses from 0.005 inches to over 8 inches, based on the specific needs of the project.

Custom Sizes Up to 48 x 96″

Custom-sized phenolic sheets offer multiple benefits for examination tables, including durability, hygiene, customization, and resistance to temperature and chemicals. Custom-sized phenolic sheets are frequently utilized in examination tables due to their robustness and resistance to water. They offer a stable surface capable of enduring extensive use and are impervious to liquid damage.

Atlas Fibre is able to ship orders placed before 1:00 PM CT on the same day, including custom cut pieces.

Custom Routing

By enabling precise and tailored designs, custom routing improves the functionality of phenolic examination tables in the following ways:

  • Allows for customization to meet specific requirements, such as incorporating additional features or accommodating unique patient needs
  • Ensures improved functionality, ergonomics, and efficiency
  • Enhances the overall user experience
  • Improves patient care

The term custom routing in the manufacturing of phenolic examination tables refers to the utilization of a router to produce specific shapes, designs, or patterns on the phenolic material, enabling customization and precision in the manufacturing process.

Edge Finishes

Several reasons underscore the importance of edge finishing for phenolic examination tables:

  • It safeguards the material from chipping, cracking, or splintering
  • It facilitates easier cleaning and disinfection of the tables
  • It improves the overall appearance, rendering the table more visually appealing.

The process of creating edges can be done in different ways:

  • Square edges: cutting the material at a 90-degree angle
  • Rounded edges: using a router or sanding tool to mold into a curved profile
  • Beveled edges: forming a sloping edge at a specific angle, typically 45 degrees.

Proper Care and Maintenance for Phenolic Examination Tables

Phenolic examination tables should be routinely cleaned using soft cloths and non-abrasive household cleaning products. To maintain the highest standards of hygiene, it is recommended to sanitize phenolic examination tables after every use.

Damage examination in a phenolic examination table involves visual inspections for cracks, chips, discolorations, and signs of water damage. Serious indicators include severe burns, blistering, or corrosive effects, and they should be promptly addressed.

Cleaning and Sanitizing

Sanitizing phenolic examination tables after each use is a recommended practice. The procedures for appropriately cleaning phenolic examination tables involve:

  1. Using soft cloths and non-abrasive household cleaning products
  2. Wiping the surface with a water and soap solution
  3. Removing any loose items from the table
  4. Wiping up spills immediately using a soft cloth
  5. Performing daily cleaning using a gentle cleaning agent.

It is crucial to be cautious of the following when cleaning:

  • Using the incorrect type of disinfectant
  • Overlooking any areas during cleaning
  • Utilizing abrasive cleaning tools
  • Using excessive water or cleaning solutions
  • Not adhering to the manufacturer’s instructions.

Inspecting for Damage

Damage inspection of phenolic examination tables necessitates careful observation for signs like cracks, chips, stains or any visible damage that could compromise the table’s structural integrity and cleanliness. Damage inspections on phenolic examination tables should be conducted at regular intervals. The specific frequency may vary but should be adjusted based on usage levels and environmental conditions that could lead to blisters, damage to protective finishes, and corrosion.


Phenolic examination tables, with their robustness, resistance, and impeccable hygiene properties, have proven to be an indispensable asset in medical and laboratory environments. We’ve explored the various types of phenolic materials, their key features, and how to choose the right material for your needs. The use of phenolic material in examination tables not only ensures durability but also maintains high hygiene standards, which are pivotal in healthcare settings.

Whether it’s Black NEMA XX with its cost-effective nature, Black NEMA CE with superior mechanical strength, or Black G10 with superior mechanical and electrical properties, there’s a phenolic material for every need. Atlas Fibre stands as a key player in the industry, providing phenolic and composite sheets that can be custom-sized, routed, and finished to meet specific requirements. With proper care and maintenance, these tables can serve their purpose effectively for many years to come.



Frequently Asked Questions

What is phenolic panels?

Phenolic panels, also known as high-pressure or HPL panels, are durable architectural panels made of natural core material layers and thermosetting resins, manufactured under high pressure and temperature.

What is the purpose of a phenolic board?

The purpose of a phenolic board, especially in plywood formwork, is to provide high mechanical strength to withstand the loads and vibrations during concrete pouring, as well as to achieve a smooth and uniform surface finish on the concrete. This helps ensure a high-quality final product.

What are the disadvantages of phenolic board?

The phenolic board insulation has a history of crumbling and can easily crush when walked on, leaving a residue on the decking, which can promote corrosion. But it’s important to note that corrosion can’t form without oxygen, moisture, and a catalyst.

Is phenolic board water resistant?

Yes, phenolic board is water-resistant, making it an ideal choice for areas that may be exposed to moisture. It is also resistant to wear, weather, and scratches.

What are black chemistry tables made of?

Black chemistry tables are typically made of solid epoxy resin, which provides superior resistance to scratching but limited resistance to high temperatures and severe chemicals often found in labs.

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