An air curtain uses a fan mechanism to force a curtain of air in a downward direction. The forced air creates an invisible barrier that helps to regulate temperatures by preventing hot or cold air from getting into a doorway or building at an opening. Air curtains are also installed to keep contaminants such as insects, dust, pollen, and other debris, from entering an inside space.
Air curtains provide an ideal alternative to traditional doors. They limit the flexibility of contaminants and environmental factors to enter an area while allowing people to walk freely between the areas.
How Do Air Curtains Work?
The downward air current acts as a barrier that limits the airflow between the two areas. The airflow must be robust enough to push potential contaminants down and removed from the opening the curtain is supposed to protect.
Air curtains are available in two types:
1. Heated air curtains
Heated air curtains shield from contaminants like dust and pollen, however, their primary purpose is to prevent the heat from escaping through an open door. They're ordinarily used in applications where temperature control is a priority, such as the entrances of shopping malls and stores. A heated air curtain pushes heat back to a building and in winter months rather than allowing it to escape, which can provide significant energy savings for the facility.
2. Unheated air curtains
Unheated air curtains are installed in areas where the main concern is controlling the entrance of contaminants. The downward airflow of the air curtain prevents dust and air particles from freely moving between areas. Unheated air curtains are often used in areas where air quality is critical such as hospitals, body shops, and kitchens.
Air Curtain Applications
Air curtains are the best solution for controlling temperature and airflow between two areas. Their versatility and reliability make them perfect for a wide range of applications.
Air curtains improve a customer’s comfort as they enter and exit a restaurant by eliminating heat or cold areas caused by leaky doors. An air curtain can also save money on heating and cooling costs by eliminating heat and cooling losses associated with the opening and closing of the door.
An air curtain at a drive-thru window keeps staff comfortable regardless of the weather outside while eliminating air exchange due to the opening and shutting of the window.
Shopping Malls and Brick and Mortar Stores
Maintaining an optimum temperature within large commercial shopping centers is often a challenge. An air curtain at the entrance of a commercial store ensures that customers and the working staff feels comfortable inside no matter how extreme the temperature is outside.
Kitchens and Walk-In Freezers or Coolers
An air curtain prevents cold air from rushing out of walk-in freezers or coolers whenever the door is opened. It also prevents insects and dust from entering food storage areas. Preventing the loss of cold air from these units saves money on the energy used to run them and also can positively impact maintenance by lessening the time it takes the unit to recover after opening the door.
Auto Body Shops
Auto body shops must keep certain parts of the shop dust-free, such as areas where detailing or painting happens. Air curtains restrict the movement of airborne particles from the shop area to the paint booth.
The Shipping and receiving areas in the warehouse are usually in bad weather with frequent back and forth traffic. Air curtains on dock doors and other storage openings can significantly reduce the pressure on heating and air conditioning systems.
Hospitals and assisted living facilitiesAir curtains in hospitals not only provide comfort for patients and staff, but also protect sensitive areas in hospitals or nursing facilities from external pollution that may harm patients. The virus falls outside the door and stays away from the virus that causes critical areas such as the intensive care unit or operating room …