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New "Pulse" Device Could Replace Blower Doors as a Fast, Easy Way to Test Airtightness

Posted by Matt Power, Editor-In-Chief

Jan 25, 2016 2:29:13 PM

The unit creates a short low-pressure pulse that can measure building leakage in about a minute.Pulse-airtightness-green-builder.jpg

Researchers at the University of Nottingham and Elmhurst Energy in the UK have been working on the device in one form or another for about 14 years—and it's finally ready for prime time.

The researchers say they created the device as a way to improve both the accuracy and usability of airtightness testing. As a bonus, it allows for pre-emptive adjustments to the building shell.

They note that most homes are only tested at the finishing stage. With this easy, portable unit, tests can be made at various stages of construction, to make sure no major leaks have been missed. Testing requires no penetration of walls or complicated setup. Unlike blower door tests, which require skilled technicians, you just wheel the thing in and press a button.

The device is functioning well but the next step may be the most challenging: bringing it into commercial production. According to Eurekalert.org, however, there are many players that want to make that happen:

"The University is currently in negotiations to license the technology to a joint venture, consisting of Elmhurst Energy, National Energy Foundation and Absolute Air and Gas -- to make the PULSE test a commercial reality."

Visit the Pulse Website

More information: Ed Cooper, Assistant Professor, Department of Architecture and Built Environment,  Edward.Cooper@nottingham.ac.uk; or Emma Lowry, Media Relations Manager, The University of Nottingham,  emma.lowry@nottingham.ac.uk


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