Why Every Cannabis Grow Room Design Should Incorporate an Air Shower

TRADELABOR has more than 20 years of experience in the control and treatment of air, working with an experienced and qualified technical staff and with the most advanced technology in this area, which together guarantee the quality of the services provided.

 

 

 

Prevent Cross Contamination of Spores and Mildew

Fungi cause many problems in grow rooms, specifically powdery mildew and bud rot. Because mold spores often cling to garments as workers pass by, an air shower provides a last barrier against spores which originate from outside the grow room. Also referred to as “air locks”, these corridors serve as additional measures against mold spores and insects.

“Air lock entrances with interlocking doors are useful not only for controlling access to the facility via key cards, but also serve as an additional control for highly mobile insect vectors. The vestibule at the entrance to a growth room can be enhanced to prevent vector entry or escape by the use of high temperatures, or controlled lighting so that the vestibule is always darker than the containment room thus discouraging insect egress due to light attraction.” – Plant Biotechnology Journal

How Does an Air Shower Work?

Air showers feature high pressure air jets which induce a flapping effect on clothing, thus vigorously shaking and expeling particles, including those derived from humans (cells, dandruff, mucous), while also combating mites, pollen, and fungal spores. Air showers for cannabis grows feature an industry standard HEPA filter which capture 99.99% of spores, bacteria, and pathogens at 0.3 micron or larger. The operator steps into one side of the shower, which automatically seals the other side to create an air barrier. Upon entry, all the air in the corridor is evacuated, HEPA filtered, and then recirculated. Air showers have optional key card and passcode readers that prevent unauthorized access to grow rooms as required by most state laws.

What Are the Advantages of Air Showers for Cannabis Grows?

Reduce Trace Moisture in Cracks and Crevices

Air showers help evaporate water in the crevices of transport carts, crates, or stacked items such as pots and bags. Particularly, reducing moisture on wheels or contact services helps keep the facility cleaner and reduce floor cleaning labor.

Pass Through for Large Items

Most cannabis facilities prefer large air showers, as transport carts and pallet jacks are often required at the beginning and end of grow cycles. Large items like carts or shelving have many crevices and cracks which harbor debris, spores, and plant material. Extra large pass-through air showers allow the passage of pallets, soil bags, pots, carts, and other large items.

Prevent Mold and Fungus Spores

Air currents are the primary method of distribution and procreation for mold spores. Mold spores are small, generally between 0.3 – 100 micron. Small particles become buoyant and stay airborne for much longer than larger particles, sometimes up to 48 hours. It would not be unusual for mold spores to be carried from general working areas or corridors near outside entrances.

Maintain Tighter Control of Air Pressure

When a door is opened, air exchange and pressure equalization results in turbulence and air jet streams. In negative pressure grow rooms, dirty and unconditioned air from outside spaces is constantly sucked into the grow room. This not only allows the possibility for opportunistic spores, but also influences temperature variation in the grow room, and therefore humidity levels.
Depending on how many people enter and exit the room, how large the doorway is, and what the difference between ambient pressure is between adjacent rooms, the impact on grow room climate varies between subtle and dramatic.

Reduce Temperature Changes

Indoor-outdoor temperature difference is a dominating factor when calculating air exchange rates. The air change rate, also referred to as ACR, is an indicator of how quickly a room introduces pre-conditioned air from a heater or air conditioner, and how fast it exhausts the air.
Anyone who has sat next to an outside entry during winter months knows that constant influx of cold air turns an otherwise well insulated room into a dry freezer.

Stabilize RH Readings

Uncontrolled air flow not only influences the physical dynamics of air throughout the canopy, but also the makeup and temperature of the air. Depending on the placement of your hygrometer probes, these variances may over/under exaggerate the compensation to achieve ideal temperature and humidity. A greater degree of control over air inputs and outputs ultimately help the grower make better evaluations and adjustments than do rooms with unpredictable and aggressive air flow patterns.

Reduce Spider Mites and Insects

“Air lock entrances with interlocking doors are useful not only for controlling access to the facility via key cards, but also serve as an additional control for highly mobile insect vectors. The vestibule at the entrance to a growth room can be enhanced to prevent vector entry or escape by the use of high temperatures, or controlled lighting so that the vestibule is always darker than the containment room thus discouraging insect egress due to light attraction.” Plant Biotechnology Journal

Air Shower Designs

Standard Air Showers

Air showers quickly and effectively remove particles so that they will not be carried into your grow room. These decontamination air showers feature rugged construction and adjustable, high velocity air jets.

Pass-Through Air Showers

Pass-Through Air Showers offer  remove particles from large materials as you transfer them into the grow room. They are used with carts, conveyors, pallets and continuous-part operations.

Low-Profile Air Showers​

Low-profile air showers have a side-mounted blower assembly, HEPA filter and electrical components, making them ideal for retrofits or where ceilings can’t be penetrated.

Air Shower Pricing – What to Know

Air Shower Application

Although most air showers for grow room and cultivation applications just require the basics: enter, cleaning cycle and exit, there are many custom options. For grow rooms or cloning and micro propagation operations, explosion-proof blower cabinets, key card access, fire alarm integrations, and motion sensor starts.

Air Shower Throughput

We refer to the number of people to be processed at a single time as throughput. For most grow rooms, a single person air shower with a 30 second cycle time is adequate for efficiently getting people in and out of the cleanroom.

For larger grow rooms where several people need to enter simultaneously, a single person air shower may be impractical. For these applications, we can create a tunnel air shower. Tunnel designs allow people to pass through the air shower in a single file while continuously moving, as multiple air shower sections have cycles triggered. The dwell time for each person is the same as the single person air shower, allowing many people can enter the cleanroom in the same amount of time.

Approx. Space Available

We refer to the number of people to be processed at a single time as throughput. For most cleanrooms, a single person air shower with a 30 second cycle time is adequate for efficiently getting people on and out of the cleanroom.

For larger grow rooms where several people need to enter the room at once, a single person air shower may be impractical. For these applications, request a tunnel air shower. Tunnel designs allow people to pass through the air shower in a single file while continuously moving, as multiple air shower sections have cycles triggered. The dwell time for each person is the same as the single person air shower, allowing many people to enter the grow room in the same amount of time.

Important Installation Considerations

Most common air showers have a blower cabinet that must be suspended at 8′ while the side wall air chases are attached. That means there will have to be some lifting mechanism to hold it in place, most often a forklift. You must account for not only installing the air shower in its final location, but also having a device capable of accessing that area.

Specify Layout

The most common type is straight through, where people simple enter in one size and exit on the other. To accommodate other requirements, we can make 90° turn air showers, or air showers with three doors. We can also build air showers approved for ADA applications.

 

Continue at:  https://blog.gotopac.com/2019/03/26/why-every-cannabis-grow-room-design-should-incorporate-an-air-shower/

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