Understand air for a better float experience
We pay a lot of attention to the solution temperature but really that’s easy. The only hard part of that is that individuals vary in their core temperature and preferences. In the future float solutions will be able to slowly adjust within a degree or so,
But the air is much more complex because of humidity.
Air can hold a lot of water vapour, not much at freezing point but it rises with temperature. If we had no ventilation, apart from preventing Oxygen replacement we would soon reach the level of water vapour that the air can hold at that temperature.
That is 100% Relative Humidity.
It is quite comfortable to breath 100% humidity provided the temperature is not too high but we do not want that condition. Any local lower temperature, such as at walls, will immediately cause water to condense out. Condensation is very bad news, it encourages mould growth.
We want to set the air to a comfortable temperature and RH. There is a range of possibilities because of the trade off between the two. The target RH is 80% not higher because of condensation risk. But lower RH can be comfortable if the temperature is raised.
At very low RH a comfortable temperature might be higher than the water, not a good idea because it will heat the water.
So there is a range of comfort values.
In open pools this really means air heating and the best silent method is with various hot panels, not with blown air because of noise.
The hot panels can be electrically heated, flat , metal wall mounted panels. That is the cheapest solution and recommended at the rate of 2 KW for most open float rooms. It can be one or two or three panels depending on the room space and although the power is useful to heat from cold, at steady state the air heat power will be much less because the water contributes so much.
But you can also choose more adventurous heaters such as hot rocks or heated mirrors or glass panels. (not mirrors you can see yourself in those cause delays!)
The Floataway Air product is a corner mounted fan unit that draws air down from the ceiling and distributes it lower down.
If you just add heaters the hot air rises and makes the upper third too warm and the lower third too cold, where the floater is.
The fan operates only during the pumping period between floats to avoid noise. In practice the air once mixed does not separate out again for at least an hour, so twenty minutes fan work is enough
The thermostat for the system should be at floater nose height, Floataway sets that up with a small control box that also measures the RH there.
The RH value is normally displayed and control is achieved by an extractor fan which is adjusted to arrive as close to 80% as possible. There must be ventilation as explained already.
Or the Floataway system can be augmented to automate RH but this depends on the room. When there are ceiling ducts, it may be necessary to fit square covers which are motorised to limit the airflow. They are normally two feet square.
Otherwise it is just a fan with a duct and again this can be arranged to shut off during float session.
Each system must be designed to suit the room if automation is required but this will in general be much cheaper than a normal contractor cost because they are used to dealing with HVAC at normal temperatures and will frown at a spec. For 93F and 80% RH but actually it’s easy with silent heat and a fan.
Just ask Floataway.