Verify the truth behind it!
To be honest, I am not sure about the introduction of air curtains in India, it is nowhere mentioned in Indian history, probably it was introduced in India after independence otherwise a zealous king would have installed it in his palace before anyone else. I’m guessing this is because Indian kings used to buy all such advanced technology from Europe like cars, elevators, gramophones and even airplanes to show class to the guests. If we talk about common people – such air curtains were first seen at airport and then in some prestigious properties in late 70s!
History – As you may have seen in old Hollywood movies, by the early 20th century people were installing revolving doors to keep dust and pollutants out of commercial buildings, but such doors use to slow down the peoples’ movement. They were not effective for maintaining temperature and were also useless for buildings with movement of large material or trollies.
In 1904, van Kannel who was also the inventor of the revolving door, registered a patent for a device to address the issue of cold draft, this roughly described the concept of an air curtain. The design was slightly different from the air curtains of this era, and many inventors and companies worked on improving on that idea after that. The Air doors became popular in the 1940s, several years after the death of the inventor. During the same period, parallel research was underway to invent automatic doors, but that too was not as useful as the air curtain.
Outlined revolving door entrance with group of people
Table of Contents
What is Door Air Curtain?
Air curtains, also known as ‘Air-doors’ in some parts of the world, are required for entrances where the doors remain open for the movement of people or trolleys, material handling equipment or other types of vehicles. The purpose of an air curtain is to create an invisible wall of air, between two areas that have different temperatures or levels of pollution. It protects the target area from the negative characteristics of another area. You can consider it a perfect replacement of plastic curtains which is still in use in many properties.
How do Air Curtains work?
The door air curtain is a device that circulates a continuous wide cascade of air downward at the entrance to an air conditioned space. It minimizes the entry of insects and outside air into an air conditioned space by creating an air stream at the entrance. The effectiveness of air curtains can vary according to the design and technical characteristics, as far as preventing infiltration through the entrance is concerned, it will be between 60 to 80%. Hence it becomes very important to look at the technical details of air curtains while procuring it.
Exploded view of a typical automatic curtain
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What are the advantages of installation air curtain at the entrance?
We can divide the advantages of installing air curtains in to 4 parts:
1. Related to ‘Atmosphere and ambience’
2. Related to ‘Energy and environment’
3. Related to ‘Impact on visitors’
4. Related to ‘Safety of staff and visitors’
Atmosphere and Ambience:
It forms a protection layer to maintain a better environment which helps in having better health and hygiene inside the workplace:
Dust Pollution: One of the major advantages of air curtains is that it protects the target area from the ingress of dust and pollutants. This ensures that employees and visitors are safe and sound in the harsh conditions of the outdoor environment.
Temperature: Most people install air doors to maintain the temperature in the premises. Having glass doors or some other arrangement at the entrance may not help in maintaining the temperature like door air curtain.
Insects: Some areas especially large kitchens or food manufacturing units are bound to be concerned about insects, this air curtain forms a barrier against flying insects like mosquito, fly and fruit-fly.
Germs and Viruses: The threat of various germs and viruses has increased in the modern era and every time a new version of the old virus comes along to scare, this device also reduces the penetration of airborne viruses.
Contamination: In some areas such as hospitals and pharma units where the risk of contamination is highest, the air curtain forms a protective wall between the two areas to protect the target area from contamination.
Odor: Since it is creating a transparent wall of air, it also protects the working area from smoke, fumes and bad odor from the surrounding or outside areas.
Productivity: Since the work is not disturbed by the external temperature and pollution, it helps in maintaining the working environment which ultimately increases the productivity of the workers of the organization.
Energy and Environment:
It may surprise you, but a device like door air curtain can play a vital role in saving electricity for you as well as helping the environment for the future:
Energy: Unlike normal doors this reduces air displacement with every movement through the entrance, it reduces energy loss from air-conditioned rooms and reduces cooling costs by up to 80%. An air curtain can pay for itself in just a few years of installation.
Running Cost: Such savings impact the business positively and also affect the operating cost of the unit in the long run. The sensor curtain plays a vital role in improving the health of the business.
Environment: See, reducing the use of energy reduces the demand for fossil fuels thereby reducing the level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Installing air curtains in general not only saves electricity but also effectively reduces CO2 emissions.
Impact on Visitors:
In the eyes of the visiting customer, the door curtain is one of the most comfortable feature of the outlet:
Comfort: In the store or place where the air curtain is installed, the customer does not need to check the push-pull indication door. They can walk-in the shop freely.
Visibility: Since this is a transparent layer of air between the visitor and the outlet, they can see inside the showroom even if they are passing through the street. It also gives an attractive open door effect which increases the chances of walk-in of the customer.
Space Saver: The installation is above the entrance, so you’re not wasting any ground space, which can be used for furniture display or placement.
Hassle Free: Even if the hands of customers are occupied by carrying the bag, mobile etc., they can still enter without any hassle. It also helps for easier access for women having babies in stroller and differently-able people – on wheel chairs.
Safety of staff and visitors:
It has been found that there are fewer accidents in properties with electric curtains as compared to buildings with other types of gates:
Reduce accidents: Many accidents are caused by improper visibility of the other side of the door, especially in hospitals, restaurants and manufacturing units due to high-speed movements. Since there is no door or physical barrier in the case of air-doors, it improves visibility and reduces accidents.
Safer floors: If we talk about cold room or warehouse, the installation of automatic curtains reduces dry-mist and reduce slipperiness on the floor, such sensor curtains are highly recommended in food and milk related industries.
Emergency exits: In the event of an earthquake or fire or any other disaster, many exit doors of buildings get blocked. Installing electric curtains helps to evacuate the building quickly and safely.
How to choose perfect air curtain? What are the functions of air curtain important to watch?
Many brands are supplying air curtains of various shapes and sizes, some selling online and others at electronic stores; I recommend you to consider the following features before buying an door curtain:
Construction: The construction should not be bulky, a sleek design with metal casing is better according to me.
Powerful: The role of the fan is most important in the automatic curtain, please note that the fan must be powerful and can generate enough jetting of air that can reach the floor.
Fire Resistance: Since it is a critical asset of the property in case of fire accident, please check whether the door curtain is fire resistance before placing an order.
Sensor: Must have good quality automatic sensor to function properly for years to come.
Easy to open: Equipment that is cleaned always performs optimally with minimal maintenance, see if the electric curtain you are buying is easy to open for cleaning and maintenance purposes.
Support: Many marketing companies only focus on sales, you tend to compare prices and place orders, you should also check online / offline service support!
Tests: Check if the supplying company confirms about the running test of the motors fitted in the device. In case of electric curtain the design of the motor tested for 3000 to 5000 hrs continues run by many organizations like Hygienedunia.
Heating: There are models of air doors available in the market, which are equipped without or with a heater to heat the air, you can check whether such a feature is required for your space. Non-heated automatic curtains are often used with cold storage and refrigerated room.
What technical air curtain features should be considered when comparing different models?
It’s important to compare not only the width that matches your entryway, but several other features, check all the feature before placing the order:
Width: The sizes available in the market are ranging between 900 to 1800 mm, which can be selected according to the entrance door. Some companies are also making non-standard sizes, but in such cases the cost is much higher.
Power: The wattage of the motors depends on the width of the air curtain, it can be 450, 600, 750W or more, compare wisely.
Air Velocity: This is a very important technical characteristic to check. Air velocity between 15 m/s to 21 m/s is excellent for equipment such as air curtains.
Air Flow: If the air flow is low the air jet will not reach the floor, the high air flow ensures to create a proper stream of air and creates a proper barrier for unwanted air to enter the target area. Normally the air flow in 900mm width should be above 1500m3/h, which can go above 2500m3/h (in case of 1800 mm Air-door)
Noise level: In many properties like hospitals, IT sector, research institutes, educational institutions, old age homes etc., low noise devices are always preferred. In case of air-door, the noise should be less than 70dBA, quieter is better.
Blowers and Motors: The design and size determine the number of blowers and the number/type of motors. As a standard, the number of blowers can be between 3 and 5 and the motors can be 1 to 3. Motors can be single shaft as well as double shaft.
What are the places where it is almost mandatory to install air curtain?
Automatic curtain is useful almost everywhere, let us divide the applications in to segments for better understanding:
Shops and Showrooms
Malls and Cineplex
Milk and Food processing units
Yoga center, and
All religious places!
Ready to get started!
Door curtains available to fit your needs with the best prices and online service support – visit Hygienedunia.