Southeast HVAC News
HVAC Industry's Air
Curtains Expected to Help U.S. Fight Oncoming Mosquito-Borne
The seemingly inevitable spread of Zika virus from South America to
North America through mosquito contact this summer is prompting
additional interest in HVAC industry air curtains by commercial
building managers in the most vulnerable fields, such as healthcare,
hospitality and education.
"We have started receiving questions regarding Zika virus and using
air curtains to prevent mosquitoes from entering buildings," said
Miranda Berner, marketing manager, Berner International, New Castle,
Pa., the nation's leading air curtain manufacturer.
Confirming the public's Zika virus concern is Orkin LLC, Atlanta,
which began fielding mosquito service calls in early April instead
of the typical time of late May, according to Ron Harrison, Ph.D,
Orkin's director of technical services. Orkin, which has more than
1.7 million pest control customers across the globe, provides a
mosquito-specific service consisting of larvaecide and adult
mosquito treatments, but has also recommended air curtains as a
supplemental flying insect deterrent for decades.
Air curtains (sometimes referred to as air doors), which are
typically specified by engineers and installed by HVAC or electrical
contractors for occupant comfort and energy savings, provide a
steady, engineered airstream across an opened doorway making it also
impenetrable by flying insects. For decades food processing and
pharmaceutical manufacturers have used air curtains against flying
insects, such as house flies for sanitary reasons, now the mosquito
and the Zika virus scare has given them a renewed purpose besides
house fly control. ”
continues below ↓
"Air movement is
known to be effective at disrupting insect flight," said Dr.
Jerome Hogsette, lead scientist at the U.S. Dairy Association's
(USDA) Mosquito and Fly Research Unit, Gainesville, Fla. "By
providing direction to air movement to create a barrier, air
curtains protect against the intrusion of mosquitoes, flies and
other flying insects."
Zika virus is spread mainly through mosquitoes. It causes
flu-like symptoms that can be overcome with rest, but the
greatest fear is its ability to cause microcephaly in the babies
of pregnant women, which greatly concerns healthcare facility
managers. Zika virus has a potential to spread in North America,
according to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), which
called it a pandemic last January.
experts recommend passive safeguards such as wearing long sleeved
shirts, using insect repellents, eliminating breeding areas of
standing water and dry leaves, and fixing breaches in screens
windows and doors. Air curtains pose one of the few proactive,
chemical-free deterrents to mosquito infiltration when a door is
"There's definitely a heightened interest and experts are concerned
that Zika virus could be problematic for North America this year,"
said Orkin's Harrison.
About Berner: Berner International Corporation is a
58-year-old manufacturer and a leader in the air door/air curtain
equipment manufacturing industry. Berner is a member of the U.S.
Green Building Council (USGBC), The Green Building Alliance (GBA),
the Air Movement & Control Association (AMCA), the American Society
of Heating, Refrigerating & Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) and
also a certified Women’s Business Enterprise National Council member
(WBENC). For more information on Berner and its products, please
call (724)-658-3551 x419 or visit
LLC: Founded in 1901, Atlanta-based Orkin is an industry leader in
essential pest control services and protection against termite
damage, rodents and insects. The company operates more than 400
locations with almost 8,000 employees. Using a proprietary,
three-step approach, Orkin provides customized services to
approximately 1.7 million homeowners and businesses in the United
States, Canada, Mexico, Europe, South America, Central America, the
Middle East, the Caribbean, Asia, the Mediterranean and Africa.
Orkin is committed to studying pest biology and applying
scientifically proven methods. The company collaborates with the
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and eight major
universities to conduct research and help educate consumers and
businesses on pest-related health threats. Learn more about Orkin at
is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Rollins Inc. (NYSE: ROL). Follow us
on Facebook and Twitter.