Fans Give Controlled And Silent Performance For Classical Festival

Effective pressure control combined with silent operation were the essential demands from Cameron Balloons for the blowers employed for the inflatable dome ...

by Paul Nash | Tuesday 16 October 2012

St Prex Classical Arts Festival Dome
... over the performance area at the 2012 St Prex classical arts festival near Geneva. These criteria were fulfilled by a pair of ‘intelligent’ fans supplied by the air delivery specialist, Air Control Industries of Axminster. The dome had a volume of 5000m3 and a diameter of 25m and provided protection for the performers and audience from the weather.

The fans were ACI’s QB EC units and were supplied with an electronic controller and pressure sensor that was installed inside the dome via a mounting plate attached to the wall of the dome. This fan and control package ensured the dome was always inflated to the correct pressure so it retained its shape and stability without the material being over stressed.

One of the concerns about using an inflated dome was noise which would have interfered with performances and audience appreciation. This would have been an issue if a fan/valve system had been used because there would have been the sound of escaping air from the valve plus the noise of continuously operating fans. However, the ACI system was designed to compensate natural air leakage and adjust pressure according to changing ambient temperatures which resulted in on-demand operation only from near silent fans, overcoming any fears of noise problems.

The inflatable dome was designed and manufactured by Cameron Balloons of Bristol to fulfil a design concept by the architect Dieter Dietz for an amphitheatre style temporary stage and seating construction that accommodated the performing artists and audience at the 2012 St Prex festival.

“We were concerned about possible noise issues resulting from continuously operating fan systems but the QB EC ‘intelligent’ fans from ACI quashed all those fears,” said Dave Boxall, Cameron Balloons Design Engineer. “ACI understood our needs and supplied a package to satisfy them within a very tight time schedule.”


Matthew Forknall
Air Control Industries Ltd
+44 845 5000 501

Tuesday 16 October 2012 / file under Architectural | Construction | Engineering | Hotels | Leisure