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Commercial Air Curtains and Sustainable Buildings

Admin on August 31, 2022

Sustainable buildings have been defined as those designed to:

  • Reduce the use of critical resources such as energy, raw materials, water and land
  • Avoid depleting critical resources
  • Avoid degrading the environment during its lifespan
  • Create interior environments that benefit the occupants, give comfort to inhabitants, and do not impede on wellness

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has a Better Buildings initiative intended to make commercial buildings, industrial plants and homes more energy efficient. Nearly 1,000 organizations are partners in this program.

How Air Curtains Support Sustainability

  • Air curtains reduce consumption of electricity
  • Air curtains improve Indoor Environmental Quality by reducing odors and helping to remedy moisture-related conditions
  • Air curtains have a long lifecycle which reduce the demand on natural resources and raw materials to produce replacement units

Air Curtains Reduce Electricity Consumption

It is estimated that 30% of energy used in commercial buildings is wasted. An air curtain’s primary role is to reduce the infiltration of exterior air and air-carrying contaminants into a building. In providing this invisible barrier of air, the heating and cooling system in the building does not work as hard and less energy is used. And when less energy is used, money is saved.

When exterior air is not allowed in, the inside building temperatures are not lowered or raised by the outside air. The HVAC system is not triggered to cycle on to restore inside air to the temperature setting. The building operator benefits from spending less to heat and cool the interior.

The Mars ROI calculator can closely estimate how much savings can be achieved in a specific space and how fast the purchase price of the air curtain is returned in savings on electricity.

air curtains
Air curtains contribute to an overall sustainable building strategy while saving energy and saving on the utility spend.

Air Curtains Improve Indoor Environmental Quality (IEQ)

The Indoor Environmental Quality (IEQ) influences the health, comfort and productivity of the people inside. There are two indoor contamination issues that air curtains can resolve.

1. Air Curtains Reduce & Contain Odors

Specialty air curtains fitted with UVV/UVC from Mars can remove the volatile organic compound (VOC) odors. Instead of covering them up with other scents, the UVV/UVC technology will actually destroy odors. At entries, air curtains can also halt the infiltration of emissions and fumes from the exterior. When there are odor-causing processes inside the facility, air curtains can be used to contain them in a space and stop them from penetrating into the rest of the interior.

2. Air Curtains Remedy Damp Conditions

The Centers for Disease Control is clear — respiratory symptoms and illnesses are the result of damp conditions. The lingering moisture can lead to microbial growth (mold, fungal and/or bacterial). Wet conditions can be the result of cold storage or freezer units, processes undertaken inside the facility, intermittent weather conditions, relative humidity and the local climate.

Air curtains can dry unwanted moisture on floors that are hazardous to employees. Air curtains can eliminate the condensation, wet floors, and icing created by cold storage units. Air curtains at the entry can keep humid exterior out. When exterior moisture is brought in via equipment or pedestrian shoes, air curtains can be used to dry slick floors.

All of these means of using air curtains to reduce moisture help to stop the growth of moisture-related microbial growth.

building interior
Moisture is known to reduce indoor air quality and reduce the wellness rating of a building interior.

Air Curtains are Sustainable: Long Lifecycle

Mars air curtains are produced from 100% post-consumer recycled materials and Mars air curtains have a typical lifespan of 20 years.

The long lifecycle of air curtains means they do not contribute to landfill waste which is sustainable because it eliminates the need to replace units that require raw materials and protected resources. In addition, the long lifecycle means the need for raw materials, energy, water and other natural resources are not required in the manufacturing of replacement units.

Final words

An air curtain is one of the most effective and energy-efficient solutions for maintaining a safe, hygienic, and comfortable indoor environment. Whether specified at building design or easily retrofitted to an existing structure, air curtains are highly versatile products that benefit occupants in real-time and benefit the sustainability of the facility. They require very little maintenance and also extend the lifespan of your HVAC system when they reduce the work the system must perform (the HVAC systems cycles on and off less with air curtains at entries).

However, all air curtains aren’t created equal; there are several important factors to consider before you make your choice. The Mars Product Selector is a handy tool that can guide you through your selection process in just a few clicks. If you need more help or information to find an air curtain that best suits your business needs, contact us today.