Fabric producer: Heytex
Engineer: Lee Barnfield, Lindstrand Technologies
Design: Lee Barnfield, Lindstrand Technologies
Fabrication: Lindstrand Technologies
Project manager: Kevin Williams, Flood Sense
Installation: Kevin Williams, Flood Sense
Photos: Lee Barnfield
Please describe the project specifications.
We were approached by Flood Sense with the goal of manufacturing a range of inflatable flood defense systems that could be used in domestic and commercial applications. Using our experience in inflatable structures and double wall fabrics Flood Sense looked to us to create a prototype structure for testing with a view to progressing to a full production range of flood defense systems.
What was the purpose of this project? What did the client request?
Flood Sense produces a range of flood defense and flood protection solutions and had been researching the possibility of a quickly deployable solution for domestic and commercial applications that could be made from a textile material. Looking to our expertise in inflated structures they had the request of a rapidly deployable system that would challenge peoples preconception about inflatable structures. Flood Sense also requested the panel stay inflated for as long as possible.
What is unique or complex about the project?
We utilised their experience in using double wall fabrics and jointing technique to achieve a 100mm thick panel that could be inflated to high pressures. Using an inflated system allows the panel to be stowed when not in use and then quickly deployable when required. The high pressures achieved gives excellent resistance to high water depths and challenges people to believe that the finished inflated panel is actually an air filled product. The flood protection panel sits within a C channel that would be incorporated into a door way and is assisted in its travel along the channel by rollers fitted to the sides. The lower edge has a keder fitted to hold the panel down when submerged under water.
What were the results of the project?
The project has produced the first prototype ready for testing in a simulated flood environment. The panel is inflated to 15psi giving the impression of a solid panel. Test panels achieved burst pressures in excess of 60psi. The prototype panel achieves excellent air retention, staying near full pressure after 2 weeks. Flood Sense are extremely pleased with the prototype flood protection panel at this stage and are looking to progress with further testing of the product with a view to looking at full production versions of the concept.
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