Containment 101: How STARC Systems Compares to Other Containment Methods

Renovation and construction projects often begin by separating sensitive occupied areas from the work site with a containment system. Healthcare infection preventionists, general contractors, and facility staff need to be confident in temporary wall containment systems that eliminate the introduction of dust and pathogens, can be easily installed and dismantled and allows for operations to continue without disruption. And, for healthcare and life science/biotech facilities, exceeding ICRA Class IV requirements is of critical importance.

There are many different options for containment/barrier management. Choosing the right solution for your project requires a good understanding of the options. See why RealWall™ and LiteBarrier™ are the most advanced, most innovative temporary containment solutions that outperform all other options available.

Modular Containment

  • Reusable modular temporary containment has been one of the fastest growing segments of the containment market. Modular systems are preferred because they are reusable and provide on-going costs savings over time. There are two categories of modular systems; lightweight and sound attenuating. Containment systems in the lightweight category are typically made of polycarbonate which isn’t very durable, doesn’t blend into the existing environment and can be difficult to install. There is only one option in the sound attenuating category of containment – STARC System’s RealWall – which established the category.
  • STARC Systems is known and trusted by leading companies in all 50 states for delivering premier great looking reusable temporary containment solutions with innovative design, superior engineering, and best-in-class customer service. Our solutions are being used in a variety of verticals including healthcare, office space, airports, higher education, life sciences/biotech and data centers.
  • STARC Systems current system — called RealWall™ for its real wall appearance and construction — reduces renovation noise by up to 50%, exceeds ICRA Class IV requirements and features unmatched durability and superior stability that’s backed by a 3-year warranty. With RealWall, you have the premier temporary containment solution.
  • STARC Systems continues to provide exceptionally engineered temporary containment solutions with our newest system called LiteBarrier. Featuring a slimmer but durable aluminum frame and fiberglass reinforced polymer panels, LiteBarrier was developed to be the most durable solution in the lightweight containment category. 
  • With RealWall and LiteBarrier™ modular containment, STARC Systems delivers the premier solutions in both the lightweight and sound attenuating containment categories. Both systems are far more than just panels. They are great looking, extremely durable and a completely integrated system that exceeds ICRA Class IV and ASTM E-84 requirements. The modular wall systems can be installed, moved and reconfigured over and over again. Because both systems are so durable, they can be reused hundreds of times over many years and are more environmentally friendly than drywall containment that gets thrown out after every use. Typically STARC’s systems pay for themselves after just 3-5 uses virtually eliminating future containment costs.

Drywall Partitions


For years, drywall barriers have been the traditional option for contractors and facilities needing temporary containment. These walls are typically constructed out of metal studs and sheetrock and take hours, sometimes days to erect and are extremely disruptive to the occupied areas. Often a barrier of poly sheeting must be erected to contain the dust and debris generated during the construction of the drywall partitions. After each use, these partitions have to be broken down and thrown away requiring a new structure be installed for each phase of work. Costs rise due to excessive labor hours, materials, and disposal fees that comes with drywall solutions. These barriers cannot be reused for other jobs and the waste adds to our landfills.

Polycarbonate Plastic Systems

polycarbonate partitions

Polycarbonate partitions are sometimes used as a dust barrier in infection control containment solutions. Typically, these systems are not very durable, and the frames can warp and rack over time compromising the ICRA requirements. Additionally, the panels can easily be bumped out of the frames and the cam attachment system is easily jostled loose over time further impacting ICRA effectiveness.

While polycarbonate panel systems are cleanable and reusable, they are not very durable or stable options, and most do not seamlessly integrate into a facility’s look and aesthetic. They also do not reduce renovation noise.

Plastic Sheeting Partitions

Plastic sheeting

Plastic sheeting containment is commonly constructed using metal studs, PVC piping or telescopic poles as a barrier frame then covered or wrapped with thick plastic sheeting. The process of erecting this kind of containment requires the measuring and cutting of sheeting to fit the area that needs to be contained.

Like a tarp, plastic sheeting is easily damaged and must be repeatedly inspected for rips and tears. The sheeting is not easily cleanable and does not provide any sound reduction, and cannot meet ICRA Class IV requirements, which is necessary for healthcare applications. It also doesn’t hide the renovation work and looks sloppy. Upon completion of the project, the plastic sheeting must be disposed of, the structure dismantled, and rebuilt with new sheeting for the next phase of work.

RealWall™ & LiteBarrier™