Vacuum gates and doors
designed for up to 0.7 bar.

Special doors for the terraXcube research center in Bolzano. Company Esto supplies negative pressure doors and gates designed for up to 0.7 bar!

terraXcube is a research infrastructure in Bolzano that can simulate the most extreme climatic conditions on earth: from snowstorms on the peaks of the Himalayas to the sweltering heat of North African deserts. In climate chambers, the terraXcube at the Eurac Research Center can be used to study how extreme climates affect people, ecological processes and technical products .

The climatic chambers differ in size and equipment. They can accommodate people, plants, and other living things for extended periods of time and can accommodate even very large machines and products.

The complete range of climate parameters can be combined in the terraXcube with different altitudes of up to 9000 meters. This allows research into how humans and nature react to environmentally induced stress and how extreme climatic conditions affect the performance of materials and products.

The company Esto received an order for the terraXcube research center to develop and supply high-quality, temperature-resistant and pressure-resistant gates and doors.

Most extreme pressure conditions =. Highest demands on doors and gates.

On the part of the operator, very high demands were already placed on the gate systems in advance. The compressive strength against the overpressure had to be certified or verified. All doors must be tested according to UNI EN 14351-1 (CE certification) and it was necessary to achieve at least tightness class 4 according to UNI EN 12207.

All sliding gates and doors had to be designed without a floor threshold, with a floor groove for the guide rail and additional sealing. Furthermore, it should be possible to drive over the bottom groove/guide rail when it is open.

A sliding door with a viewing window for the “Large Cube” negative pressure chamber:

A vacuum of up to 700 mbar, applied in 1500 s, prevails in the chamber. The sliding door with a clear door opening of 4000 x 3600 mm is subjected to negative pressure on one side. The resulting force acting on the entire door leaf is approx. 110 tons. The gate system is electrically operated in deadman mode and the travel speed is approx. 1.5 m/min.

The scope of supply also included various sliding doors with viewing windows, designed as airlocks with negative pressurization possible on both sides (suction and pressure) for the “Small Cube” and several revolving doors designed for one-sided negative pressurization. one-sided pressurization.

In addition, the door systems must be able to withstand the demands of extreme temperature ranges from -20°C to +50°C. The sealing system was designed as a circumferential inflatable seal with a heated frame body. (risk of icing due to condensate and up to – 20 °C in chamber). Furthermore, the doors have thermal insulation against the applied temperature level and heated viewing windows against icing, fogging and condensation.

All door systems were required to be manually unlocked and opened from the inside and outside, and electronically interlocked to prevent accidental opening in the event of a pressure differential between the two chambers. This electrical control is provided by the customer.