JS demonstrates the art of humidity control at National Gallery

Nine Neptronic SKE resistive steam humidifiers have been supplied by JS Humidifiers to the National Gallery in London to replace the original resistive steam system. They can provide up to 220 kg/h of steam to the atmosphere inside the galleries of the Sainsbury Wing and the main building to maintain optimum humidity around some of the world’s most valuable paintings. The design and project management was undertaken by Howard Hall of Andrews Reid & Partners, who explains, ‘We need to main 55% RH within the gallery ±5%. We wanted to install a humidifier that was easier to maintain. ‘The previous type of resistive steam humidifier took anything up to four hours to be serviced, whereas the boiling vessel of the Neptronic SKE can be dismantled, cleaned and put back online with a downtime of just 30 minutes.’ The heating elements have a large surface area, so they can boil water with a relatively low surface temperature, thus attracting less scale. They also expand and contract significantly during operation, which sheds scale from they surface of the elements so that it can be flushed away during normal operation. A valuable feature in an art gallery, which can see the number of visitors changing rapidly, is the 0 to 100% modulation of these humidifiers and their ability to reduce steam output within seconds of receiving a signal from the BMS triggered by the room sensor
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