Laboratory and Field Testing of an Aerosol-Based Duct-Sealing Technology for Large Commercial Buildings
Laboratory and field experiments were performed to evaluate the feasibility of sealing leaks in commercial duct systems with an aerosol sealant. The method involves blowing an aerosol through the duct system to seal the leaks from the inside, the principle being that the aerosol particles deposit in the cracks as they try to escape under pressure. It was shown that the seals created with the current sealant material can withstand pressures far in excess of what is found in commercial-building duct systems. We also performed two field experiments in two large-commercial buildings. The ASHRAE leakage classes of the systems were reduced from 653 down to 103, and from 40 down to 3. Methods and devices specifically devised for this application proved to be very efficient at (a) increasing the sealing rate and (b) attaining state-of-the-art duct leakage classes. Additional research is needed to improve the aerosol injection and delivery processes.